Aviation Consulting

Aviation Consulting

March 28, 2024

How to overcome challenges and step into the future of aviation

The aviation industry of today bears little resemblance to that of decades past. Competition within airlines has intensified, blurring the lines between legacy and low-cost carriers, necessitating a transformation to ensure survival. Airports, too, have undergone significant shifts in their business models, evolving into multifaceted entities encompassing retail, real estate, and IT services, in addition to serving as airline hubs. Sustainability has emerged as a pivotal concern, poised to shape the future of aviation.

aviation consulting
The aviation industry stands on the cusp of a new era, with transformational processes now weaving through every segment.

The MRO (Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul) sector, whether integrated within airlines or operating independently, is poised for dramatic transformation in the coming years. Changes in OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) business models, especially among engine manufacturers, alongside the introduction of modern aircraft and challenges related to skilled personnel and overhaul capacity, present unprecedented opportunities for industry players.

Meanwhile, suppliers across various sectors, such as IT providers, navigation services, and ground handlers, face distinct hurdles, including a shortage of qualified personnel, emerging competitors, diminishing monopolies, and evolving IT infrastructure.

The aviation industry stands on the cusp of a new era, with transformational processes now weaving through every segment.

Our services

#1 Strategy and transformation

Roland Berger is the only European strategy consultancy with worldwide experience and relevance. Our consulting expertise helps businesses around the globe to shape their path into the future of aviation. Strategy is the core of any company, it needs to be wisely developed and well implemented. With rapid changes in the aviation environment, transformation is of the essence. No longer a buzz word, companies need to carefully adapt their business models to sustainably produce sustainably profit margins.

Efficient data usage is essential to developing and implementing a successful strategy. Roland Berger’s aviation consulting practice offers comprehensives support on strategy formulation and data-driven implementation, enabled by our data management framework and data processing experts from our digital team. We support aviation businesses along the entire value chain and across diverse operating models, from regional airports to national flag carriers.

"The aviation sector may have largely recovered from the Covid-19 pandemic but it faces a number of new challenges. Companies along the entire value chain must transform their business to step into the future of aviation."
Portrait of Florian Dehne
Zurich Office, Central Europe

#2 Commercial airline function

We have extensive experience in network, revenue management and distribution. With ONE Offer (and Order) set to change the industry over the next decade, we continue to enable our clients in setting up their offer management, optimizing their commercial network, and in formulating meaningful alliances. Our extensive consulting experience and global network means we are well positioned to help carriers and suppliers optimize their commercial offerings. Modern airline retailing revolutionized how carriers address their customers and sell tickets. Efficient modern retailing enables airlines to tap into new revenue sources such as ancillary revenues. Our consulting teams have implemented projects across multiple continents in which we helped clients to formulate new product offerings and deliver a smooth retail experience.

#3 Operations

Our aviation consultants advise clients on all aspects of daily operations. Given the vast number of volatile developments affecting supply and demand in aviation, resilience is paramount. Carriers, service providers, airports, and other stakeholders must safeguard the quality of their operations to avoid unnecessary costs. Risks must be tracked, mitigated, and quickly tackled to ensure stability and operational efficiency. Our aviation experts help players along the global value chain to mitigate their risks and increase the integrity and therefor stability of their operations.

#4 Cost management

In an industry in which it is hard to predict revenues, effective and strategic cost management is key. Rising uncertainty regarding passenger and freight-forwarder demand as well as supply of personnel and energy is forcing aviation players to focus on efficient processes, digitalization and streamlining of procedures and automation. We believe ONE Order will be a game changer for the entire ecosystem and a key initiative to transform the industry for decades to come.

#5 Customer experience

The aviation industry is more transparent than ever. As well as price, carriers now compete across the value chain to offer a seamless experience for their customers. Indeed, customer experience is one of the most important factors in increasing revenues, creating an imperative for carriers to deliver on their promises. We support our clients in formulating and establishing their key processes to consistently deliver high-quality experiences.

#6 Sustainability

Customers are putting an increasing focus on sustainable travel, with aviation on the cusp of transition over the coming decades. Financing the transition to sustainable aviation and finding a comprehensive pricing strategy will be particularly challenging. Whether emissions tracking, offsetting programs, or sustainable fuel research and implementation, Roland Berger's aviation consulting equips today's carriers for tomorrow.

#7 Workforce management

We have vast experience supporting clients in rightsizing their workforce, selecting service providers, and assisting in negotiations for future collective labor agreements. Reaching agreement between all stakeholders while ensuring competitive costs is key to being financially equipped for the future and avoiding delays and cancellations through strikes. Airlines must effectively develop their workforce across all hierarchies to increase employee retention and educate tomorrow’s aviation leaders.

Sign up for our newsletter

Further readings
Our global network
Portrait of Matthias Hanke
Senior Partner, Managing Partner Switzerland, Central European Head of Transportation
Zurich Office, Central Europe
+41 79 372-3945