Today’s post was written by Susan Doniz, Qantas Group chief information officer.
March 2018 marked an historic event for Qantas and the aviation industry: our inaugural direct Perth to London flight, the first nonstop connection between Australia and Europe. Back in 1947, this “Kangaroo Route” took four days and seven stops. Today, our Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner carries 236 passengers in one 17-hour flight that rides the most favourable winds to make the 14,498-kilometer journey—currently the longest Dreamliner flight in the world.
Technology makes many of these innovations possible: from analyzing a decade of seasonal wind patterns to creating meals that maintain hydration and reduce jetlag, managing the logistics of loading 21,000 items on each flight, and ensuring passenger safety and comfort. When I joined Qantas, I was impressed with the airline’s drive to use technology to deliver the best customer experience. In the complex ecosystem that is an airline, each employee plays a key role in the value chain that contributes in some way to differentiating Qantas within the industry. We use Microsoft intelligent cloud-based business services to empower our 30,000 employees in more than 100 locations to connect with each other and to access information easily. These capabilities are critical for helping everyone at Qantas to be creative about improving our customer experience.
I’m very excited about the promise of reducing complexities across the company through easy-to-use tools that give all employees a voice. We’re encouraging a culture that fosters one global corporate conversation. Intelligent communication apps like Microsoft Teams, one-click video calls, and the Yammer social enterprise network go a long way toward opening dialogue that may have been restricted for a regional airport in the outback. The more we empower people with a voice, the more we can expect creative collaboration that leads to innovative contributions from right across the company.
The other cultural change as we evolve our workplace comes from providing better access to information. Today, customers have more and more digital information available, and it’s only fitting that the same should be true of our employees. Instead of having to search through disparate systems to find answers, we’re putting valuable, targeted information at employees’ fingertips so they can quickly make decisions and provide efficient, proactive customer service.
Easy access to relevant data makes a huge difference to our Firstline Workers. And because Microsoft 365 works with other Microsoft tools, such as Cortana and HoloLens, I can imagine scenarios where we can better collaborate between teams to streamline and enhance the work we do. For instance, engineers might visualize a mechanical part during the design process, then collaborate with others, store and share files, and brainstorm ideas—all using Teams.
A strong identity management service provides the foundation for our new modern workplace. To ensure our 30,000 employees have the information they need without compromising data security, we’re using the integrated set of security-enhancing capabilities in Microsoft 365. These, in addition to the security features embedded in the Office 365 apps, boost our security posture while simplifying how IT manages and secures work environments.
If I could sum it up in one sentence: we want people to be able to say they are doing their best work at Qantas. With Microsoft cloud-based business tools, we are helping them do just that. It’s one very important way that we continue to deliver better customer experience, one flight at a time.