The latest part of British Airways’ £6.5bn initiative to enhance the customer experience is that each of its 15,000 cabin crew members will be issued with iPhone XRs to help them offer a more personalised service to the more than 45 million customers that travel with the airline every year. This cabin crew programme follows a successful trial of iPads for senior cabin crew on board every flight.
The iPhones will be loaded with a selection of apps to help crew offer customers instant additional assistance during their journey. The apps will enable cabin crew to provide flight and airport information, confirm requests for airport assistance, confirm details of new bookings when onward flights are delayed or cancelled, book special meals and amend personal preferences. The apps will also give crew access to each customer’s preferences, enabling them to personalise interactions.
Bradley Smith, 27, one of the first cabin crew to receive one of the cellphones, says they will enable a step-change in customer service. “Recently, when a customer realised that he had forgotten to order a special meal, he was really impressed when I quickly took out the phone, logged onto ba.com and ordered a meal for his return journey – all within a matter of minutes in the middle of the flight.
“It felt so rewarding to be able to immediately resolve the situation for the customer. All my crew reference guides are also loaded onto the phone, so everything I need is in my pocket throughout each flight; it really has made a huge difference already.”
The rollout of these devices is the latest initiative to enhance customer service at British Airways. Earlier this year, the airline launched Help Me; a new section of ba.com to help customers make changes to their bookings and find out more about their consumer rights if their journey doesn’t go to plan. The airline also announced a multi-million-pound investment in training for its staff based at London Heathrow, with every agent now trained to help customers with a range of different queries and personally reach out to them at the airport using iPads loaded with a host of specialist apps.