Why I Started a New Airline Software Company Six Years Ago

As Zulu celebrates 5 years in the market, our founding purpose has become more important today in these turbulent times of uncertainty and rapid change. Zulu was started with the purpose of bringing big airline capabilities to every airline, large and small, using cloud technology and flexible development plus Zulu’s expertise in scheduling best practices.

Before Zulu, airlines had 2 basic choices.  First, simple PC-based software for small teams that required many manual workarounds.  Or, second, huge investments in complex and expensive solutions.  Neither option offered much in the way of support or customer success.  Worse yet, the optimization and forecasting tools required experienced OR specialists and even with those, the large airlines struggled to use those tools effectively.  The complexity and costs were too high.  Zulu has put three key elements together in one product requested by most airlines:

  1. Modern Technology – what is new about Zulu’s technology and why should that matter to customers? Zulu’s technology is the same generation as the largest tech companies like Amazon, Google and Facebook.  Like those tech leaders, Zulu’s technology scales to the largest data and allows fast development and deployment.   Today’s software and cloud technologies leverage the experience of thousands of developers for more reliable and secure solutions.  Why does the speed and flexibility matter to customers?  Requests for new capabilities revolve around what users need rather than how much they can pay.  These new capabilities are ready in weeks not months.  New users can learn the system because it behaves like the smart software they use outside of work.  The cloud hosting and support make it affordable and secure for all airlines.
  2. Key Features and Affordability – What feature or functionality does Zulu have that would make switching worthwhile for you? Besides the ease-of-use of modern technology, Zulu is a solution with all the capabilities of the big airline systems at a price scalable for any size airline.  Zulu provides:
  • Business Intelligence – all the information you need is right in the system without having to manipulate it in Excel or update a data warehouse. This saves a lot of time in creating professional reports and dashboards for management and other areas.
  • Commercial Data – incorporate bookings, forecasted demand and historical profit into your schedule to improve analyses and support confident decision-making.
  • Sophisticated Automation – solve complex problems quickly and effectively with easy-to-use optimization to build better schedules and react quicker to changes.
  1. Customer Support from Experts – Do the words “Customer support” for airline software elicit a rolling of eyes and frustrated laughter from your team? Zulu has made it a key part of our product to put the customer back in customer support.  Our Customer Success team assures that problems are resolved quickly.  Answers to your questions on how to most effectively use the software can be found 24×7 by asking our team members, experienced airline planners who are fluent with the Zulu system.  Training for new users and the new functionality in upgrades is provided by our customer support team also. We also have a searchable Knowledge Base in the system with answers to most frequently asked questions (FAQs).  For enhancement or new functionality requests, we turn around our upgrades each month and our team does them in the cloud without interrupting your workflow.  No more waiting for years or being dependent on your IT group.

Put these three factors together, modern technology, intelligent solutions and customer success, and Zulu delivers the flexibility and tools to quickly adapt to a changing market and operation not just today but well into the future.  Best of all, it is all included in a single affordable software-as-a-service (SaaS) fee.  There is no longer a huge upfront capital cost.

For those airlines looking to improve their effectiveness and efficiency, airlines can transition to Zulu’s system in a matter of weeks with minimal disruption to the team.  The system can be set up in a day with training and integration over just a few days.  The interface is easy to use.  Integration with other systems can be quickly and easily configured.  Internal IT groups are surprised that they don’t need to dedicate any resources to the new system.  Modern technology and customer success from Zulu make the legacy experience something to put into the past with the goal of quickly moving to the type of system and expert support your team will need for rebuilding the future.