The rising value of APIs in a troubled travel industry
While APIs (application programming interfaces) are not new, they are a critical component of any organization’s digital presence. Now that our business and social lives are largely happening online, the value of APIs and their strategic importance can’t be overlooked.
Linking data, processes, and people
Well-developed APIs can serve as a connectivity tool, linking data from multiple internal sources as well as data from business partners, saving costs.
Even though the airline industry was not among the early adopters of APIs, their strategic value is well-recognized. Many organizations are leveraging APIs not only to improve their operational efficiencies, but also to tap into new markets and to provide a better customer experience. For example, Expedia uses API technology so they can implement changes quickly, like recent rebookings during the crisis. While APIs are on the back end making magic happen, they serve a critical mission on the front end by linking volumes of data, processes, and people.
Getting data to all destinations
At ATPCO the operational reliability and the timely distribution of airline content around the world is our core focus, and APIs are playing a significant role in fulfilling this essential need. The entire airline pricing and shopping ecosystem relies on this content to create and enhance products, make pricing decisions, and build new solutions. Recognizing the innovative power of APIs, we continue to build and evolve our own portfolio of APIs—content that can be easily consumed and distributed everywhere people buy travel.
Iteration beats initial perfection
As the airline industry started building with the latest technology and using many versions of APIs and schemas, the complexity increased exponentially. To help each unit work with the next, the industry needed additional layers of functionality, such as API management, enrichment, and integration. These tools help connect the dots, enabling connectivity between airlines and their partners regardless of their platforms, data structures, and underlying technologies.
Making the distribution process more efficient in time and cost is more important than ever. Now might be the right time for your organization to explore more deeply what APIs can do for you—and it doesn’t have to happen overnight. I am a strong believer that when it comes to new solutions development and implementation, iteration beats initial perfection. Start small, iterate, and scale later.
The innovative power of APIs
Another well-known, positive impact of APIs is their ability to spur innovation. They serve as the building blocks for developing new solutions quickly. For example, at hackathons where bright minds play with data and functionalities that are enabled by APIs, incredible new solutions are created nearly overnight.
A recent example—ATPCO’s Reassurance UPA API was developed to help airlines communicate their health and safety measures during the COVID-19 crisis. This API was used by multiple teams, including a couple winning teams, at the <Trave/Scrum> Hackathon. Additionally, our Bridge Labs participant Pilota incorporated this API in their solution that is already available to travel shoppers. All these innovations happened within the last three months and are already serving market needs to restore traveler confidence.
While not all APIs provide equal value, the possibilities are endless with a well-designed, documented, stellar API when all important aspects like governance, management, and security are in place.
To learn more about the value of APIs and how they can help your organization, reach out at email@example.com and explore ATPCO’s catalogue of APIs.