The New BagAssist Business to Customer Modules: Empowering the Passenger to Solve Baggage Incidents

There is nothing more frustrating for a passenger than a baggage incident at the end of a journey. The way in which the incident is treated can easily undermine customer loyalty.

Until now there was no alternative but to queue alongside other angry and frustrated passengers, eventually to meet a lost and found agent only to be handed a piece of paper with some hand written numbers on it. Here, whatever good feeling the passenger had gained from his travel experience evaporates in seconds.

The new BagAssist release will finally change this situation by giving the hurried traveller an alternative. In three simple steps he will be able to declare his lost luggage on a dedicated PC by filling in intuitive screens with flight information, baggage description using the IATA baggage identification chart and contact details.

Ultimately, almost all lost luggage is reunited with its owner, but the overall process is usually disruptive, and the service recovery process must provide passengers with access to status information whenever they request it. At the moment, passengers have the option of using the Internet to find static lost baggage status, or make a phone call to the airline or its handling agent.

The second step in empowering the passenger will be made after the baggage has been received at the airport: from any internet connection worldwide, he will be able to verify on-line the incident status, but more importantly once the baggage is ready to be delivered he will be able to organise delivery, at his convenience, through simple steps that take care of all required airline restrictions.

Both initiatives are perfectly in line with IATA ‘Simplifying the Business’, which intends to streamline air transportation processes and be more transparent and communicative towards the passenger.

It also perfectly balances BagAssist’s two main visions and philosophies: increase the productivity of the lost and found department and agent flexibility while at the same time raising the overall service quality for the passenger and the handled airlines.

ABOUT THE BAGASSIST SUITE OF PRODUCTS

The BagAssist suite of products allows ground handlers and/or airlines to differentiate themselves from their competitors by raising overall service quality standards to gain a clear competition advantage in the marketplace.

There is a global basic baggage tracing system in use called WorldTracer™, from SITA. WorldTracer however, requires extensive agent training – as long as two weeks for basic agent training, and another two weeks for management training. Cost and time often prevent baggage agents from attending training sessions and knowledge of this non-intuitive and complex old-fashioned legacy system has dramatically decreased, and is now mainly restricted to WorldTracer coordinators and a few supervisors.

The BagAssist software suite was designed to change all that by getting bags to passengers faster and with greater security. Users of BagAssist are delighted by its simplicity of use and by how its automated functions and intuitive graphical user interface cuts down training time for the agents. The short training time allows the use of interim agents during peak periods. In line with Sky Assist policy, the users can also uniquely influence the direction of BagAssist through their active presence at the product user conference and its result in the yearly release, and ensuring BagAssist meets current business and industry needs. BagAssist’s product strategy is to address market needs, and deliver enhancements and new functionality quickly.

BagAssist has date syntax validation, verification of mandatory fields, help tips and warning messages, virtually anticipating and eliminating human errors before sending the information to WorldTracer. The airline information pages increase operational efficiency and by having data available on-line, agents are always up-to-date with any changes or special restrictions they need to know about, making training and integration of new agents much easier.

Sky Assist is also listed in the SITA WorldTracer communication channel database, even though not a customer of SITA, and was invited to the last WorldTracer conference in Miami as an observer. This ensures that all basic changes made to WorldTracer are incorporated into the BagAssist product suite and that the BagAssist customer community not only stays aligned with the latest industry wide tracing requirements, but also provides official company recognition to the ground handling market.

The BagAssist suite of products brings a new level of quality and productivity for airport ground handlers and airlines that ground handle themselves. All the necessary output documents for the passenger are professionally produced in a dynamic way, as are baggage labels and documents for delivery companies.

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