Fixed Based Operators (FBOs) are an essential part of the General Aviation industry, supplying vital services to aircraft operators, including fueling, maintenance, ground support, crew and passenger accommodations, and other support services.
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The FBO market is expected to grow significantly due to the increasing demand for business and general aviation services. According to a report by MarketsandMarkets, "the global FBO market size is projected to grow from $14.7 billion in 2019 to $21.2 billion by 2025, at a CAGR of 5.8% during the forecast period."
As technology continues to advance rapidly, FBOs need to keep up with the latest trends to remain competitive in the market. So, what benefits does technology investment have on the FBO’s future?
Efficiency and Productivity: Technology can significantly improve the efficiency and productivity of FBOs. By automating processes, such as fueling and maintenance operations, FBOs can reduce turnaround times and increase the number of aircraft they can handle in a given time. For instance, the use of RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) technology can automate fueling operations, reducing the time it takes to fuel an aircraft significantly.
Customer Satisfaction: Investing in technology can enhance the customer experience, which is essential for FBOs to remain competitive. Technology can help FBOs provide their customers with real-time updates on their aircraft's status, including arrival and departure times, maintenance schedules, and fuel levels. Additionally, FBOs can use technology to offer online booking and payment services, providing customers with a hassle-free experience.
Safety and Compliance: Safety is a top priority in the aviation industry, and FBOs must follow strict safety regulations. Technology can help FBOs ensure compliance by automating safety checks and inspections, which can help prevent accidents and ensure that aircraft are in good condition. For instance, the use of drones can help FBOs inspect aircraft, runways, and other infrastructure for potential hazards.
Cost Savings: Investing in technology can help FBOs reduce costs overall. By automating processes, FBOs can reduce labor costs and improve resource allocation. Additionally, technology can help FBOs optimize their inventory management systems, reducing the cost of storage and planning. For example, the use of IoT (Internet of Things) devices can help FBOs monitor inventory levels in real-time, reducing the risk of overstocking or stockouts.
Competitive Advantage: Investing in technology can give FBOs a competitive advantage. By adopting the latest technologies, FBOs can differentiate themselves from their competitors, offering better services and experiences to their customers. Additionally, technology can help FBOs stay ahead of the curve, expecting market trends and adapting to changes quickly.
FBOs need to invest in technology to remain competitive in the aviation industry. By improving efficiency, enhancing customer experience, ensuring safety and compliance, reducing costs, and gaining a competitive advantage, FBOs can position themselves as leaders in the market. Therefore, FBOs should prioritize technology investment to ensure they are equipped to meet the evolving needs of the aviation industry.