Software as a Service (SaaS) solutions, such as MTrust, are being increasingly utilised in the Airport sector, due to the flexibility and reduced infrastructure costs that they offer. However, not all SaaS providers are the same, so what questions should Airports ask before they engage a SaaS provider?
Is the product currently live and operational in other Airports?
This is a key requirement for most Airports. Although most SaaS products will undergo internal testing before deployment, it is vital to know that the product you are selecting is live and has been proven to work in an Airport environment and at a comparable scale.
For example, MTrust is the only Airport ID management and issuance solution live and operational in an Airport. In fact, 20,000 people (and growing) are part of the MTrust Community, including Authorised Signatories, ID Centre Agents and Applicants across London Gatwick, with three further Airports joining the MTrust community over the next four weeks.
Has the product been developed in-house?
SaaS lends itself to start-ups who can quickly create 'cool' looking apps, but can fail as quickly as they succeed. Sometimes that failure will be during a project, as they do not have the knowledgeable resources to deal with a large customer project. SaaS may scale easily but companies cannot.
Suppliers who have developed the product themselves also have a greater understanding not only of their product, but also the industry they are selling to. With a 50 strong team behind it, MTrust was developed specifically for Airports and HRS have over 10 years of experience of working with the leading airports. Over the last 12 months we have invested over 15,000 man hours to ensure MTrust has all the functionality to suit an Airport’s needs – and we continue to listen and add new functionality to constantly improve MTrust.
Can the supplier adapt to your needs and offer any additional products?
Suppliers need to demonstrate in-depth knowledge and a long-term commitment to an Airport's needs. Not every airport is the same and each has their own particular set of requirements. Although designed to help standardise the ID pass application process, MTrust can be configured to meet specific form and workflow requirements, so business as usual will not be affected.
We can also help Airports improve the passenger experience and operational efficiency with MFlow, the world’s only passenger flow measurement solution that utilises facial recognition.
What level of support and security can you expect?
Airports are a 24/7/365 days a year operation and it is vital that the SaaS solution is hosted on a class leading platform with resilient infrastructure and support. MTrust is hosted within the secure ISO 27001 approved Amazon AWS cloud infrastructure (as used by NASA, Pfizer and Netflix), all MTrust services and data are maintained within Ireland across 3 disparate data centres and multiple levels of data encryption are delivered to ensure complete security of all data and information. This security has been tested both in-house, by airport information technology and information security experts as well as external testing, including independent penetration testing to the highest standards.
It is also vital that your SaaS providers can support you when you need them. At Human Recognition Systems (HRS), customer support is a vital part of our business. All our customers can contact our support team directly and speak to a real person during normal office hours. For our Airport customers we offer full out of hours support to ensure our SaaS solutions are always available, any time, day or night, functionality that has never before available to the ID Pass Processing community.
How long has the provider been in business?
75% of software start-ups fail. 20% of SaaS implementations fail.
Both these scenarios leave companies reliant on the SaaS solution stranded, proving why it is so vital that Airports select the right provider.
Airports need to work with companies they can trust and build long-term relationships with. A good indication of whether this is feasible with a potential supplier is how long the company has been in business and operating in the industry in its current incarnation. Some companies will claim many years of experience, but on closer inspection this experience was in a previous incarnation of the company and often in an entirely different field.
With over 200 years of combined experience in the Aviation industry and a 10 year successful track record, we provide airports, airlines and their stakeholders with trusted and proven passenger flow management systems and ID Pass management solutions. Our wealth of experience ensures you are in safe hands for such business critical processes.
Our proven security, access and measurement solutions are enabling airports to deliver unique and personalised passenger experiences; while increasing operational efficiency, retail conversion and airside/landside security.
If you want to find out more about how MTrust is reinventing the Airport ID pass management and issuance process, contact us or call +44 (0)333 456 2001.
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