10th Asian Ground Handling International Conference

Ground Handling International’s tenth Asian event, held in the Marina Bay Sands hotel, saw almost 400 delegates attend.

Three days in total, the magazine’s tenth handling conference marked two numerical milestones: as well celebrating a decade of handling conference provision in the Asian region, GHI’s event also recorded the largest ever attendance. With 30 exhibitors providing ample background in terms of GSE, IT and other services, delegates had no reason to be concerned about their time out of the office. Added to that were the One-to-One meetings, an incredibly popular element of the conference: this year almost 1,500 were logged.

Aside from the more traditional papers, the third day of the Asian event was given over to specialist streams, by popular demand: GSE safety advances, care of the ULD, negotiating skills and e-learning were all covered in these specialist workshops, which rounded off the whole event.

FIVE THINGS WE LEARNED FROM THE EVENT

Investing in leadership will give more value to an operation
To Jetstar’s Head of Operations, Todd Chapman, this is a mantra. How is he so sure? The answer is easy: when an employee decides to sleep in his car, parked under the wing of an aircraft that is due to fly out first light, such passion for the job says it all.

Airlines want ISAGO - yet are still swayed by price
Carriers are still pushing ISAGO yet a non-ISAGO handler may well win a contract through a cheaper price. Mark Edwards at dnata Singapore bemoaned the reality that allows this to happen, mentioning an example of a third (non-ISAGO) handler at Changi who undercut the other two providers significantly to secure a contract. Six months later the third handler had to pull out of the arena, citing an untenable position…

A-CDM is not a system; rather, it’s a culture change
Kris de Bolle, an expert in the area of Airport Collaborative Decision Making, was able to explain to the audience, with the help of a panel, the huge advantages of adopting this approach to the concept of the turnaround. With all stakeholder parties aligned, greater operational efficiency is assured.

The best negotiation is done before you get to the table
How often does the handler complain of an overloaded contract signed for modest returns? If your answer is all too often, then swotting up on negotiation skills should be on your agenda. Kevin Ryan delighted the audience with his carefully chosen body language and weighted conversational remarks to achieve what he wanted from a role-playing accomplice.

Asia is expected to be a growth engine for the next few years
KPMG’s Ashwin Noronha was under doubt about the potential of the Asian region. The Indian continent is looking extremely promising, for example, and even though a complete picture of the region is difficult to assemble because of the fragmentary nature of the available data, all the signs are that enormous growth is on the horizon.
To conclude, as always, GHI would like to express its thanks to the conference’s sponsors. For 2018, the 11th Asian Ground Handling International Conference will take place at the Centara Grand, Bangkok, over March 27-29. We hope to see you there.