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Agent exclusively using Aero and not SHARES

Agent exclusively using Aero and not SHARES

Old Sep 24, 17, 3:49 pm
  #1  
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Agent exclusively using Aero and not SHARES

Was waiting to board a flight at LAX yesterday and was in one of those new queues that swing behind the podium, so I had a good view of the agent at the customer service position (versus the gate reader) and what she was doing. I noticed that Aero was the only program open on her computer. I thought that most gate agents use both Aero and the SHARES terminal and prefer using SHARES since it's faster. Are there gate agents using Aero exclusively now? I also know there's a third application used at the gate reader that deals with the actual boarding of crew and pax.

Sorry for the wonkiness, I find airline IT stuff super interesting.
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Old Sep 24, 17, 4:02 pm
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I could be wrong, but I thought AERO was just an overlay on top of SHARES.

MatthewLAX had an article the other day on how Oscar was doing rounds and speaking to front line employees and what frustrates them most, Aero being one.

Aero is the front-end system United airport staff use to process flights and rebook customers. Many employees have complained about its speed and functionality that hampers the efficiency of handling customers and delays. I can certainly add that it takes a ridiculous amount of time to rebook compared to the old fastair system prior to the Continental merger.
http://liveandletsfly.boardingarea.c...s-gate-agents/
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Old Sep 24, 17, 4:12 pm
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Originally Posted by JHake10 View Post
I could be wrong, but I thought AERO was just an overlay on top of SHARES.

MatthewLAX had an article the other day on how Oscar was doing rounds and speaking to front line employees and what frustrates them most, Aero being one.



http://liveandletsfly.boardingarea.c...s-gate-agents/
Right, same system, just different ways of accessing. Usually I see agents using Aero and the green on black terminal (which is how they access the GG codes) this agent was only using Aero, which I was surprised.
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Old Sep 24, 17, 5:20 pm
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It wouldn't surprise me if new hires are only trained on Aero. In general, it seems that an agent's skill in using native SHARES is directly proportional to their time working for CO.

Similar thing happened at US, when they started using the Qik overlay over SHARES after the HP merger.
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Old Sep 24, 17, 7:17 pm
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In about another 10 years Aero is planned to have the same speed and functionality that Fast Air/Apollo had pre merger. SHARES = Back to the Future
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Old Sep 24, 17, 7:58 pm
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AA has done the same thing. New agents only trained on its overlay. The overlay also limits front line agent discretion and enforces fare rules and penalties in the same way that Concur acts as an overlay for commercial booking software to enforce corporate compliance rules.
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Old Sep 24, 17, 8:53 pm
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I heard that progressively, United is (smartly) making some important functions only accessible in Aero not SHARES. I know it's a big change for those who have spent years using green screen commands and not a mouse-based point and click GUI, but if the system works quickly, and the menus and screens are intuitive, which is not easy to design, then I think Aero is the right thing to be focusing on. SHARES can only do so much.
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Old Sep 24, 17, 9:03 pm
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Originally Posted by worldtrav View Post
In about another 10 years Aero is planned to have the same speed and functionality that Fast Air/Apollo had pre merger. SHARES = Back to the Future
--------------
Wishful thinking that United should have stayed with (never left) Fastair in the first place. By now they could have trained thousands of ex-CO agents inside of two weeks with a system that was way ahead of it's time and STILL would have been efficient, FAST and useful - and they would have loved it. What a shame.
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Old Sep 24, 17, 9:15 pm
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Like AA and DL, United intends to shift all front-line employees over to GUI use exclusively at some point. I think it would have already happened by now were it not for the epic challenges and delays the airline has faced in crafting and implementing a new crew scheduling program for the combined FA workforce.
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Old Sep 24, 17, 10:09 pm
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I remember this like it was yesterday...

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Old Sep 24, 17, 10:13 pm
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Originally Posted by DetroitFlyer View Post
I heard that progressively, United is (smartly) making some important functions only accessible in Aero not SHARES.
<snip>
SHARES can only do so much.
Uhhh... call me old-fashioned, but I'll disagree with that in the strongest terms. Aero is an overlay on SHARES. If you're suddenly building important features only into your overlay, and restricting them in your core system, that's a recipe for disaster, not progress!

... and SHARES only being able to do so much is equally a problem. If it's your core system, SHARES should be able to do _everything_. Whether staff are trained and competent to do so on the system is a separate argument altogether.

The issue here is that trained/experienced agents can pop-out of the overlay and actually solve problems within SHARES if they know how to do so. If Aero is the only interface available, then when there's a bug or something that Aero doesn't do well or at all, there's no fallback. I can't even count the number of IRROPs and re-routing/re-ticketing issues I've encountered since the merger that were only resolved by a supervisor coming over, dropping to SHARES, and hammering out the solution.

If UA IT were to restrict that functionality by building in blockers such that Aero was the only tool available, they're not empowering staff... they're tying one hand behind their back, and ensuring that their best/most-experienced agents get dragged down to the level of their worst/newest.
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Old Sep 25, 17, 2:00 pm
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It certainly feels like AA's GUI push last year (or was it 2 years ago?). I don't think they've gone to the extent of locking out native SHARES yet, but I wouldn't be surprised to see that be the next step, once they've had some time to work on Aero.

I just hope it doesn't prevent a more experienced agent from getting the job done quickly (like AAgents at ACs complained about at the time).
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Old Sep 25, 17, 3:14 pm
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Originally Posted by eklapper View Post
I remember this like it was yesterday...

that looks like a smartly laid out interface when adjusted for then current technology capabilities

a dash tiny bit of United Connection memories arise in fact upon viewing that screen shot.
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Old Sep 25, 17, 4:02 pm
  #14  
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FastAIR could do an OAL rebook and reissue in less than a minute, it would take the SHARES agents at least 30 minutes to do the same work.
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Old Sep 25, 17, 5:59 pm
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I believe they are restricting Native Shares for some functions. Has anyone tried to get added to a VDB list from a different station? You used to be able to feed the command to the agent at a different airport (who insisted "you could only be added at the gate"), but I have now tried twice in the last month, and both agents typed in //ovs/vol/... and got an error message. My conclusion is that management has disabled this capability which is a total shame! (Perhaps because they are moving to auction style?).

And agree on fastair. I still remember taking a VDB at IAD, and running while the ticket was being reissued, getting to the new gate just as they were closing boarding and got checked in and boarded. Then a month later taking an overnight VDB and spending 45 mins for a supervisor to rebook me SFO-LAS at the little rebooking center in the 80s gate area. Both of these were all UA metal.
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