TOP 4 things you need to know about the IATA Airline Retailing Maturity index

October 27, 2021

The transition to true retailing with richer customer engagement and dynamic offer creation, is more than ever, a top priority for airlines. Airlines are now compelled to fast-track and prioritise their retail transformation and the digital innovation required to make this a reality. To deliver a robust digital retailing strategy that is centred around the customer and driven by intelligence to deliver exceptional customer experiences at scale.

Yesterday at the IATA Digital, Data and Retailing Symposium in Madrid, IATA launched a new Airline Retailing Maturity index (ARM), the aim of which is to align airlines and the key value chain partners towards reaching the shared goal of true airline retailing, at scale and delivering superior retail experiences as quickly as possible.

Ahead of Datalex’s imminent placement in the index, we have summarised some of the key take-aways regarding this new Airline Retailing Maturity index.

As an airline - here are the top four things you need to know:

1. What is it?
The new Airline Retailing Maturity index combines the previous NDC and One Order certifications. These previous certifications helped with the initial uptake and adoption of these messaging standards at a technical level. The new ARMi looks at all the retailing capabilities using Offers and Orders of the IATA programs of NDC, One Order, Settlement with Orders, Dynamic Offer Creation and Future of Interline. It is structured around three key pillars:

  • Technical / Capabilities verification – Across NDC, One Order and Settlement -what capabilities are enabled?
  • Partnerships Deployment – Scalability across the value chain and what capabilities are live with partners.
  • Value Capture Compass – A strategy & roadmap view and analysis, so that airlines are better equipped to move forward with an advanced airline retailing strategy.

2. What distribution capabilities do you support?
The previous certification method was based on measuring functional message support, but it didn’t accurately identify if airlines were using these APIs to strategically focus their retailing capabilities. The new ARM index takes the focus off the technical xml messages, and puts the focus on the business workflows and associated business outcomes, that an airline wants to implement and achieve.

3. How are your Partnerships working?
This new index looks at the relationship between airlines and sellers (i.e. travel agencies) and how well they are working together to drive retailing reach and volume. It helps an airline to understand which of their partners have better connections or reach to their end customers. And it helps sellers to provide feedback to the airline on the airline’s ease of integration, seller support and capabilities across business flows.

4. What is your Retailing Mindset?
Importantly, the ARMi allows an airline to assess the maturity of their retailing capabilities and how they can use this to inform their future retailing strategy. It also maximizes how airlines create value and capture value through the use of digital retail technology, a retailing roadmap, and organisation structure. Knowing where you are today allows you to plan for the future.

Today airlines need to not only become market-leading digital retailers – they also need to keep pace with ever-evolving digital retail trends, meeting the needs and expectations of today’s, and tomorrow’s, digital centric customer.

At Datalex we are working with airlines worldwide to supercharge their retailing strategy. With greater digital retail differentiation fuelled by more content, more control, more flexibility and more opportunities to digitally engage and service customers – across all touchpoints and all channels.

Datalex is a gold sponsor of the IATA Digital, Data and Retailing Symposium taking in place Madrid this week where we are showcasing our leadership in all things digital retail including our AI Based Dynamic Pricing solution and roadmap to Dynamic Offer, our market-leading, airline controlled Datalex Merchandiser to help airlines drive increased ancillary revenue, Datalex NDC for retailing across all channels and Datalex Direct, which puts power in the hands of the airline to drive revenue and profit as digital retailers.

Meet us at Booth 31 at the IATA Digital Data and Retailing Symposium today.


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