Airport summer readiness

In this major European airport, grounds handling resourcing plans were spread across five handling agents and poorly evidenced. In previous years, insufficient handling agents were recruited, leading to service failures and reputational damage to the airport.

Our Solution

An Excel model that processes flight schedules and engagement standards, generates demand profiles and calculates workloads for each handling role and agency.

A Microsoft Power BI tools that enables the resilience of each handler’s engagement standards to be understood and compared, using data visualisation techniques.

An associated Excel model that simulates the impact on staffing numbers when different assumptions are used for leave, sickness, productivity and use of overtime.

Tracker tools that monitor progress towards peak readiness, including the progress of newly recruited agents through training and security clearance.

Features and Benefits

The flexibility of the model enables a range of potential scenarios to be evaluated, such as new airlines joining the airport or airlines switching from one handler to another.

The rigour within the models ensures a high quality of planning across all handling agents regardless of their internal capabilities and builds confidence in the results.

Embedding analytics into the planning process has encouraged managers to use evidence-based information as the basis of resourcing decisions.


The new models were incorporated into business as usual and have been used to assess summer readiness and proactively deal with potential shortfalls, for the past three years.