“Alles neu macht der Mai” is a German saying that translates into “May makes all things new.” Though not quite ‘all things’, IAG Cargo nonetheless recently communicated two items of news that form part of the foundation for a strong future: the announcement of a new Chief Transformation Officer, and the official launch of its new state-of-the-art handling facility at London-Heathrow.
By the look of things, higher education Math and a prior career in Transformation at British Airways (BA) are what make for the perfect Chief Transformation Officer over at IAG Cargo. Both Jenny Critchley and her predecessor, David Rose, hold degrees in Math and hail from British Airways’ Transformation team. David Rose, who was previously Head of Transformation – Operations at BA, was recently appointed Director of London Operations in IAG Cargo’s Executive Team, having been its Chief Transformation Officer since SEP21.
Digitalization and Sustainability
Following 10 years in various strategy, customer service and analytics roles at British Airways, before becoming its Head of Transformation in MAR21, Jenny Critchley joined the IAG Cargo Executive Team as Chief Transformation Officer in MAY23. Naturally, her focus in the role will be on continuing to drive digitalization coupled with greater sustainability efforts. These include new digital opportunities, and the ongoing shift to paperless AWBs and an expanding electric vehicle fleet. The results should set IAG Cargo up for increased productivity, new business solutions and further growth opportunities.
Jenny Critchley, Chief Transformation Officer at IAG Cargo, commented: “I’m delighted to join IAG Cargo, after many years on the passenger side of the industry, during my career, I have focused on designing future business strategy, much of which is underpinned by digital, customer-centric, and sustainable transformation. I believe we have a great opportunity to build upon the excellent work that has been achieved so far, to enhance the end-to-end experience of our customers and I am delighted to be leading this exciting, business-wide transformation.”
David Shepherd, Chief Executive Officer at IAG Cargo, stated: “At IAG Cargo, we are driving digital transformation throughout the business, whilst pushing our sustainability efforts and our Chief Transformation Officer plays a key role in achieving this. Jenny will support the business to evaluate the prospects of new opportunities, champion key strategic initiatives, and deliver on our multi-year transformational priorities to deliver a better service for our customers.”
Premiering the New Premia
“Faster, smarter, bigger, better, temperature-controlled, and game-changing” are the adjectives emphasized in IAG Cargo’s 30-second intro video published on LinkedIn this week. Double the size of its predecessor (the “old” Premia), which one ex-employee described as already “pretty good,” the new facility is geared to meet the changing requirements of premium (hence its name) shipments. For that reason, it incorporates a larger dedicated Constant Climate Quality Center (CCQC) with temperature-controlled building for the appropriate quality handling of pharmaceuticals. The latter is in good hands given that the new facility has been certified under IAG Cargo’s Good Distribution Practice (GDP) and WDA licensed by the UK Medicines & Healthcare Regulatory Agency. The CCQC houses 29 dedicated cool cells and temperature facilities offering +2°C to +8°C (COL), +15°C to +25°C (CRT) and -20°C (FRO) temperature ranges. The +15°C to +25°C (CRT) chamber includes two dedicated break and build workstations.
Putting the speed into loose-shipment handling
eCommerce is of course the other fast-growing segment that New Premia has been equipped to deal with. The new 10,000 m² facility is semi-automated and comes with 20 break and build workstations plus 11 rapid-rise, landside delivery doors. Seamless efficiency is the goal. Not only do more stations and doors allow for faster drop-off and pick-up, but New Premia’s throughput is processed and monitored using bespoke IT systems which have been fully integrated into IAG Cargo’s existing Warehouse Management System – according to IAG Cargo, this “is the first time globally that this integration has been delivered”. Also, the 20 new workstations are operationally connected by four large ‘transfer vehicles’, which pass through the rapid-rise doors, autonomously transporting cargo through the facility and into storage in preparation for their next journey step, whether import or export.
Pivotal milestone for IAG Cargo
Cargo chief David Shepherd said: “The opening of New Premia is a pivotal milestone for IAG Cargo - the benefits it will bring both to our customers and our operational teams is huge. We strive to provide the best service for our customers and the investment into our IT systems will improve our operational performance, optimizing the movement of cargo to support global trade. I’m proud of the entire team that have made it possible to officially launch today – it represents a truly exciting time for us as a business. I look forward to seeing New Premia now run at its full potential.”
That full potential is underpinned by training and the creation of new positions: “IAG Cargo staff have received targeted training over the last 18 months and this training continues as normal operations takes place at the facility. New roles have also been created such as six new Planning Managers, who work closely with the Operations Duty Manager and are fundamental in delivering the day-to-day operations”.
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