The last couple of months have been very interesting for MindTree in the Travel industry with successful stints at the Travel Distribution Summit Europe and Travel Distribution Summit North America. Our business teams were in attendance at both these events, and even had speaking slots, sharing our decade long experience in the Travel Domain. As the head of the Knowledge Services Business Unit, where our primary focus is Analytics, I am often asked the question – how has the Knowledge Services unit fared and contributed to the Travel domain in this economic downturn? So, here are some insights:
MindTree’s odyssey with the Travel industry started over 10 years ago, and we now have an incredible track record of delivering IT solutions to global customers across the Travel Supply Chain. Our experience across all sections of travel has given us great exposure to the most critical element for driving new growth for companies in a down economy … data.
During the economic downturn, many of our clients were looking for new avenues to improve top line and bottom line. And what surfaced was the “wealth of data” these companies are sitting on. The application of Analytics over the vast volumes of quality data has indeed proved to be a boon in making decisions that impact top and bottom line. For example, at one end of the spectrum Analytics is being used to understand the cost aspects and contribution of various factors towards driving profitability. While at the other end, we are using Analytics to help companies understand the customer and develop better targeted marketing initiatives.
In the Travel Analytics space, we are doing work in areas such as: Customer Loyalty Analytics, Occupancy Analysis, Customer Segmentation, Demand Forecasting, and so forth.
Let’s take Loyalty Analytics for example. Organizations need to continuously innovate and deliver services to enhance customer loyalty. In this market, no one can afford to lose a profitable customer. But, customer loyalty programs are typically under-leveraged (and under-funded) in most travel companies because they do not correlate all the data points that make up a true customer profile. When doing Loyalty Analytics, it is critical to not only analyze transactions, but also bring in behavioral and demographic aspects. When all of these aspects can be correlated then Analytics can be used to help provide insight into the real 360 view of the customer.
Another big thing we are seeing in this space is Information Monetization. Again, Travel companies are sitting on mountains of data and they are not effectively leveraging it to help create new and / or larger revenue streams. Analytics is the key to unlocking the hidden treasure troves within these organizations. Just think of the monetization opportunities of knowing when a customer books a flight, a car, a hotel room, etc. Let’s take the airlines for example. They are pretty good about offering customers opportunities to also book hotel rooms and cars when a flight is booked, but how much further could the knowledge of when and where someone is traveling be taken?
With the right data and good Analytical Modeling, the opportunities for Information Monetization are tremendous.
At MindTree, we are helping companies tackle these exact problems / opportunities. We have the unique advantage of possessing domain, technology, data, and analytics skill-sets and knowledge. This leads to lots of fun projects and tangible results for our clients. It is pretty cool stuff.