I joined myairops a little over 4 1/2 years ago at a time when our parent organization wanted to execute a major new strategic plan. I have always been passionate about aviation and have worked in and around the aviation industry for the last 25 years, in both military and commercial aviation. Since joining myairops, I have built a phenomenal team of people who together have created some of the most modern cloud capabilities in the aviation market today. Together we have established a close working relationship with a global customer base through a broad portfolio of products and services.
Can you explain what myairops is and why it exists?
myairops exists to fulfill a simple mission: to provide a suite of advanced technologies to the aviation industry that can be used by any organization, regardless of size. We believe that our strength lies in our team, the ideas generated by our clients and our experience in the aviation sector. We set out with a clear vision to put automation and data at the heart of everything we do. You can’t automate if you don’t have the right data, and to get data into the system you need an open, scalable architecture that offers data interoperability through APIs and cloud-based technologies. We use the Microsoft Cloud for cognitive services, scalable applications and infrastructure, and global coverage to enable our customers to meet their data sovereignty requirements. When we started our mission, we knew that automation was key. Too many tasks rely heavily on people working on different systems. The complexity of the processes is growing, which means an increase in workloads. A global shortage of skilled workers within the industry compounds this problem. Having systems that can make decisions on behalf of users, while experts are involved at the point of need, means organizations can achieve greater efficiency.
Can you explain what problem you are solving in the aviation industry and why?
myairops solves the efficiency problems that all organizations face. What we have recognized is that different organizations have different problems and there is no one size fits all solution. This means that we have focused on ensuring that our products are the most interoperable on the market. In a nutshell, data integration is paramount, but looking What that this data is integrated is important. The first approach is to move data between systems. This eliminates the initial challenge of having to enter data more than once. However, myairops goes further, we look at the business process from end to end, we analyze where inefficiency and waste are present and we optimize it. This is a highly configurable process, and we care about every click as it can add up to repetitive tasks that are wasteful.
Automation takes the form of processing everything that doesn’t need a human to be involved. Imagine a situation where today you are continually reviewing everything related to a flight, changes to travel details, changes to passenger manifest, crew fatigue and service restrictions, weather and maintenance considerations around the aircraft. This can become overwhelming, especially with smaller teams, large fleets, or complex, high-volume operations. Our solution digitizes and automates the decision-making process, in this scenario alerting the human operator to assess only those items that are now close to or outside of operational parameters and need human intervention. This significantly reduces the overall workload.
For many years, aviation software was disconnected from other business software and solutions. We have ensured that our solutions fit seamlessly together and allow information and business intelligence to flow freely throughout the organization.
The breadth of our capability also means that we can control and adapt the business process from end to end. Take our myairops flight and myairops fbo products as an example. The first is designed for aviation operations, such as staffing, flight scheduling, and maintenance (to name a small subsection of its capabilities), and the second product is for organizing FBO facilities, such as ramp handling, parking, and servicing. . We are already combining these products to solve challenges in new and emerging sectors of our industry. eVTOLs and the vertiports from which they will operate will be high-performance environments that will need to make critical decisions about when to unplug and load, when to swap crews, and other such decisions. For those decisions to be efficient, it is necessary to combine all intelligence and operational information into a single operational picture. Now add our myairops camera maintenance tracking software and our store and inventory capabilities and you can see how we can help businesses, whether it’s taking a single product or a set of connected products. Of course, we cannot accomplish everything on our own and we have established close working relationships with others in our industry. Always putting operational data workflow and business process automation at the forefront of everything we do.
What changes have you seen in the industry in recent years and how have you adapted?
COVID has put a lot of pressure on the aviation industry. Closing borders and restricting the flow of movement meant that companies that were already in existence with thin margins saw their revenue streams cut off instantly. Even with the support of governments, we saw an unprecedented level of people choosing to leave the aviation industry and we are yet to see a strong recovery of that workforce. When people come back, there is still lead time for the delivery of the training. Another important trend is consolidation, not only in the form of mergers and acquisitions, but also through the growth of partnerships. There are some amazing companies out there that, within their specific area of expertise, we’ve seen some innovative approaches to certain problems. Organizations need to work together like never before and I think the commercial aviation industry has been under-invested in technology to this point. If you combine the challenges and opportunities around sustainability, financial control, and a thirst for data insights, it means that even established providers have had to completely rethink their strategic imperatives. We have seen divestments and certainly a major change in technology. We are also on the cusp of a very exciting evolution within our industry stemming from the need to solve mobility challenges differently than they are solved today. eVTOL/VTOL and drone technologies for the movement of goods and services will bring new opportunities as well as significant new challenges for regulators and the way we use airspace.
AI and machine learning are currently hot topics when it comes to technology. What technological advances do you see happening in the aviation industry?
Yes, they are hot topics, just like blockchain was a couple of years ago, which I still don’t think has been properly leveraged within our industry. The same goes for AI and machine learning. We need to be careful about their application and relevance or else the industry will see them as technology fads that have little relevance or are reserved for only the largest companies, commercial carriers or OEMs. We believe these are essential capabilities and our mission is to make them accessible to everyone. We see applicability in several key areas: data processing using image recognition, fuel optimization, schedule and roster optimization. The first is based on neural networks and learning. We have applied these solutions for problem spaces like validating or reading paper aircraft records, MEL, invoices, etc. This problem space deals with repetition, memory and neural networks, since they are ideal for this type of problem. The rest are best solved by genetic computation, and we’re partnering with PerceiverAI to do just that. In very simplified terms, a machine can process a large number of potential scenarios based on data and desired results.