The Air Cargo Excellence Survey was established in 2005 and is carried out and published annually by Air Cargo World . The survey is based upon a rating system that measures airlines and airports on specific criteria and subsequently ranks them to identify above or below average performance. There are two surveys — one for airlines and one for airports — based on their performance during the previous 12 months.
Airlines are rated by freight forwarder subscribers on:
- Customer Service
- Information Technology
Customer Service: Claims handled with expedience; problems solved in a prompt and courteous manner; professional and knowledgeable sales force
Performance: Fulfills promises and contractual agreements; dependable; accomplishes scheduled transit times
Value: Competitive rates; rates are commensurate with required level of service; value-added programs
Information Technology: Tracking and tracing of shipments; electronic commerce capabilities
Airports are rated by Airlines on:
Performance: Fulfills promises and contractual agreements; dependable, prompt and courteous customer service; allied services — ground handling, trucking, etc
Value: competitive rates; rates commensurate with service level required; value-added programs
Facilities: Apron, warehousing, perishables center; access to highways and other modes
Regulatory Operations: Customs, Security, FTZ
Rather than highlight winners, the survey shows an airline or airport exactly how they are performing against an industry average. This is particularly meaningful, as the results provide a standard on which to improve as well as highlighting the areas in need of improvement.
Methodology and Purpose of the ACE Survey:
The surveys are completed by Air Cargo World subscribers located throughout the world. Airlines are rated by subscribers identified as a freight forwarder, cargo agent or 3PL; the airports are rated by subscribers identified as working for an airline. The purpose of having two survey groups is to ensure the integrity of having the actual customer rate their service provider rather than opening up the survey to the general audience.
An email notification for each survey group is sent to the subscriber asking for their participation. The email contains a summary overview of the survey, its purpose and a link to access the survey online. Two follow-up emails are sent as a reminder to those subscribers who have not participated to that point.
The survey asks the participant to only rate the airline(s) or airport(s) they have conducted business with during the past 12 months. They are asked to rate those qualifying airports or airlines in the four areas of measurement noted above on a scale of 1 to 7, with 7 being the highest.
The airlines are grouped by annual freight tonnes carried, and the airports are grouped by regional location and sub-grouped by annual tonnage handled. These groupings are done within the survey’s analytic structure and are not known to the person who is rating the airline or airport. The purpose in grouping the airlines and airports is to provide an equitable rating system in establishing the surveys’ results.
The average rating for each measurement is calculated within each group, and that average is indexed to a value of 100. Ratings for airlines and airports are presented as an Indexed Score, relative to the average, to allow for easy comparisons. Scores greater than 100 represent an above-average performance. Scores less than 100 represent below-average performance. Scores of 100 represent exactly average performance.