The ACI Airport Customer Experience Accreditation is the first and only program in the airport industry which guides the airport ecosystem in becoming customer-centric and ultimately improving overall airport experience. The objective of the Accreditation is to help airports improve their practices, promote a direct positive impact on customer satisfaction and to assist airports to meet evolving customer expectations.
For SIA the Accreditation reaffirms the efforts being done by SCAA and its stakeholders to elevate the experience of its customers. The airport is the backbone of the tourism industry, and it is the point where guests formulates their impressions of our islands. Making it imperative for SCAA to take steps to ensure that it gets to know its customers’ needs and wants and giving above and beyond to create joyful moments.
The Chief Executive Officer of SCAA, Mr. Albert noted that this accreditation represents the realization of one of SCAA’s core values being its customer. In receiving the accreditation, he said that “we have put a lot of focus on customer experience within the airport community to instill a customer centric culture in the way we do business. This Accreditation is a direct result of the hard work of the entire airport community and not just SCAA. We are proud of all the efforts made thus far and we have a lot more to do, to uphold and elevate our standards, it truly takes a village to realize such an accomplishment.”
In congratulating Seychelles for the Accreditation, the Director General of ACI, Mr. Luis Filipe de Olivieira, said “We congratulate your airport for achieving this status within this program and we look forward to enabling you to reach further achievements in airport customer Experience Management.”
To prepare for the Accreditation, SCAA had to partake in ACI’s Airport Service Quality (ASQ) Survey during the first quarter of 2023. This allowed for the country to benchmark services at the International Airport with others in the region and globally. The results highlighted that Seychelles International Airport ranked remarkably well with an overall score of 4.01 in terms of courtesy and helpfulness of airport staff, including information and maintenance staff, this compared to a score 4.37 globally and 3.82 in Africa. In addition, the best performance recorded from the survey was at security screening, with a score of 4.17 compared to 4.36 globally and industry average of 3.76 in Africa. Feedback from border and passport control was also of importance with waiting time recorded at a score of 4.17 compared to 4.30 globally and 3.75 in Africa.
The impressive score from the survey is a direct result of efforts to improve airport facilities as well as continuous steps to train and empower airport employees through the Lospitalite programme. Importantly, the introduction of the Seychelles Electronic Border System (SEBS) which resulted in the rapid processing of passengers has also contributed to the excellent overall score and the recognition.
The Accreditation program has a total of five levels and to date there are only two airports globally who have achieved level five accreditation, one being the Incheon International Airport, South Korea, and the other being Quito International Airport in Ecuador.
With the Accreditation well in hand, SCAA aims to work with all airport employees and agencies to strengthen its collaboration and engagement. This is quintessential if the Authority is to have more synergy with its stakeholders in terms of elevating customer experience standards. It is in recognition that the airport is not just a transportation facility, it is part of the destination, where they create lasting memories.
Future plans to improve customer experience at SIA includes Free WIFI, improved wayfinding, décor and entertainment.
Renaud Irminger, CEO of Travizory Border Security, said: “With the launch of the Seychelles Electronic Border System, Seychelles now has one of the most advanced Border Security Systems in the world and achievements such as this Level 1 Accreditation are testament to the hard work that has gone into the project over the past three years. The Seychelles International Airport is the first in Africa to introduce walk-through biometrics and passenger clearing times have drastically reduced as a result. Travizory is extremely proud to have contributed to this milestone and we look forward to continuing on this journey with our Government partner.”