Millennium Tower
Weena 690 – 16th floor
3012 CN Rotterdam

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines

February 28, 2019

How a custom-built digital workforce of software robots optimizes critical processes for a leading airline.

One of the world’s oldest and most respected airlines, KLM has been providing memorable travel experiences since 1919. The company serves millions of passengers each year and continues to grow, demanding an ongoing focus on the speed, precision and scalability of its many business processes. KLM knows that expanding its RPA (Robotic Process Automation) is a key way to meet its customers’ and employees’ needs, and has partnered with Ciphix in this high-impact initiative.

KLM enlisted Ciphix together with KLM Digital Studio to help streamline the process of exchanging airplane components in need of cleaning or maintenance using a platform called aeroexchange.com. With more and more orders coming in, this work – crucial in keeping 200+ aircraft in top condition – was becoming increasingly time-consuming and error-prone. Component exchange requires the rapid completion of repetitive tasks with complete accuracy, making it burdensome for a human workforce… and an ideal fit for a digital one.

By automating parts of this process, KLM sought to reduce the task time per component from one hour to 15 minutes. This was an ambitious goal – just the type we love to take on. Armed with the tools to build and implement a fully customized RPA solution, Ciphix was ready to jump into action.

What we built

The project began with in-depth discovery, during which we carefully assessed KLM’s component exchange process and the best opportunities for automation within it. A close examination of the “as-is” process – the way employees perform the work prior to the implementation of RPA – allowed us to identify numerous tasks that could be reassigned to software robots. With a focused strategy in place, we set out to build KLM the most tailored and robust solution possible.

Ciphix leveraged UiPath in combination with custom development to create and deploy a workforce of advanced software robots, each designed to increase efficiency by minimizing human effort. This robotization eases several phases of the exchange process: when a new order comes in, a robot generates a return tag for the client to use in shipping the component. Upon the shipment’s arrival, other robots scan the barcode and process the component through a terminal application to update the history and the financial administration application.

Our RPA also validates client-provided data, offering KLM valuable insights into the process. Because each robot logs and reports all statuses, human operators have the control and visibility needed to improve efficiency on an ongoing basis.

The impact

Ciphix’s software robots have been hard at work for KLM Royal Dutch Airlines for almost six months. expertly handling a variety of tasks that were previously performed by hand. This digital workforce, which KLM can smoothly scale in response to changing volumes, sharply reduces time and costs while freeing employees to focus on more engaging tasks.

Having already added significant value, Ciphix has been asked to help optimize additional parts of KLM’s business processes working closely with the KLM Digital transformation. This ongoing partnership taps both our teams’ strengths, making it even easier for KLM to continue raising the bar for safety, efficiency and exceptional service.