IATA utilises Rackspace Technology as airlines look to the clouds to modernise post-Covid

James has more than a decade of experience as a tech journalist, writer and editor, and served as Editor in Chief of TechForge Media between 2017 and 2021. James was named as one of the top 20 UK technology influencers by Tyto, and has also been cited by Onalytica, Feedspot and Zsah as an influential cloud computing writer.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is working with Rackspace Technology to utilise Amazon Web Services (AWS) technologies as well as DevOps best practices for its members.

A review of the IATA’s stack saw ‘legacy applications [that] were hindering [its] digital transformation’, but noting that by using containers and serverless technologies from AWS could ‘achieve its goal to becoming leaner, greener, and use meaningful data.’

Alongside this, the association looked to lower operational costs as well as increase efficiency for its developers. The former was achieved through moving to a flexible cloud services consumption model, as well as utilising VMware-owned CloudHealth for AWS, while the latter involved incorporating DevOps processes.

Airlines, incorporating the wider travel industry, have understandably been one of the worst hit by the Covid-19 pandemic. The IATA cited statistics which found airlines have on average been working at 30% capacity in 2020 compared with 2019. Speaking to sister publication MarketingTech in May, Carolyn Corda, CMO at data co-op ADARA, noted how it was an ‘incredibly challenging’ time for travel clients, emphasising the need to help through real-time information dissemination among other tools.

For those who will come out the other side, the need for modernisation and innovation in IT processes is very much apparent. Pascal Buchner, director of ITS and CTO at IATA, said the association did not expect to return to pre-Covid levels before 2025.

“The pandemic accelerated the need for us to work towards becoming leaner and meaner, in a way that can be learnt from and replicated by our members that are also struggling with the massive impact of Covid-19 on the aviation industry,” said Buchner. “This means taking advantage of a modern architecture and removing legacy technology and processes from the equation.”

Elsewhere, another association is looking towards modernisation. Star Alliance, which represents 26 member airlines, used Nagarro, an India-headquartered IT services provider, to upgrade its mobile app. This included biometric facial recognition and new search-and-book functionality.

Photo by Johny Goerend on Unsplash

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