Elenium Automation Builds on Touchless Technology Investments
- 30 Nov 2020
Despite air traffic being at a standstill, the pandemic has provided opportunity for technology development and implementation to expedite. World Business Partner Elenium Automation’s Chief Commercial Officer, Mr. Ilya Gutlin, recently caught up with Jeannie Wong, our head of communications and events, to talk about some of the challenges and opportunities.
JW: What was the biggest challenge for Elenium this year, given air travel coming to a practical standstill? How have you had to interact differently with your customers, in Asia-Pacific and elsewhere?
Early on we had concerns about COVID-19’s impact on the aviation industry. We made a conscious decision to build on the investments that we made in touchless technology – to make self-service more intuitive for Passengers with Reduced Mobily (PRM) - quickly moving into Vital Sign Detection. This meant learning about solutions that can make a difference in people’s lives, po
tential competition, creating a new product line and a different way to distribute by certifying value-added partners around the world. The Elenium team came together to make this a success.
JW: Can you give examples of a particular technology which you didn’t expect to implement so quickly but had to expedite arising from COVID-19? How will these change the face of how an airport operates and interfaces with the traveling public?
Touchless. We had developed the technology and thoroughly tested it but the need to avoid viral and bacterial transmission made the solution relevant for passengers beyond PRM’s. Making the airport’s self-service process from end-to-end across multiple channel touchless became our focus. Our patent-pending innovations like voice interaction, movement detection and remote passport recognition added value to the passenger experience.
Vital Sign Detection is a brand-new product and direction for the company due to the pandemic. It allows our clients to keep all the stakeholders reassured and safe with no intrusion to their privacy. We have filed for government certifications in several jurisdictions, becoming a medical device company.
JW: Do you anticipate any new trends or habits for the traveling public?
Becoming germophobic, people will look for more touchless interaction and the use of mobile during the passenger journey. They will be more attentive to the well-being of people around them, so physical distancing will be a concern. In the short-term, international flying will become more expensive, reducing the number of people at the airports. Paper boarding passes and paper bag tags will disappear and camera technology and sensors will be more prevalent.
Vital Sign Detection is a brand-new product and direction for the company due to the pandemic. It allows our clients to keep all the stakeholders reassured and safe with no intrusion to their privacy.
JW: What is the new normal for you and your team at Elenium these days?
Video calls and frequency of scheduled communication. I have a scheduled 1-2-1 calls with each member of my team twice a week and a weekly catch up for the sales and marketing team. The Elenium senior team has a daily stand up. We have a scheduled bi-monthly townhall. Customer and partner calls are done anywhere between 6 am and 11 pm, letting people you barely met “into” your home. Working from home and living at work has become completely blurred with my youngest trying to make a cameo appearance in the calls when he is home from school.
Having said that, being “forced” into the video call culture and maintaining it over months will have a pervasive impact on our industry.