Amsterdam Airport delays: how do airlines communicate internally?

how do airlines communicate internally during such disruptions like the Amsterdam Airport delays?

A few weeks ago, Schiphol Amsterdam Airport experienced significant disruptions to operations due to a refueling system failure, resulting in the cancellation and delay of hundreds of flights, with many thousands of passengers being sent home or finding themselves stranded at the airport for hours on end. 

In total, 250 flights were canceled and 450 were delayed, a further 100 flights were canceled on Thursday following the impact of the disruptions.  


Travel agencies are already preparing claims, and have commented that Schiphol didn’t manage communications to passengers appropriately. 

“Travel organizations are also critical of how Schiphol communicated during the disruption. With all the “modern means” at its disposal, Schiphol’s information provision really should have been better, Oostdam said to NOS. “Travel organizations were also not told anything. If you are a call center employee, then you did not have nice days.”

Quote via

But it’s not just passengers that experience the frustrations of such disruptions: this counts for airport staff and airline crew too. 

How do airlines communicate internally during situations like the Amsterdam Airport delays?

When asking crew affected by the disruptions last week, we discovered they experienced poor communication from their airlines, with many crew members reporting they were alerted to the serious delays by hearing it on the news first and not from their employers. We asked crew to rate their communication experience, and the average score was 5.5 out of 10.


Amsterdam Airport delays: Airline operation disruptions need swift communications

Big disruptions affects many flights and crews and swift communications are necessary to prevent a ‘domino’ effect.

Fast communications can save hundreds of crew members reporting for canceled of delayed duties.  




…But accuracy and relevancy of information above haste

When informing crew it’s not just the speed of communication that is important: having the correct and most relevant information available is of even more importance. It’s no good sending out a message within half an hour of disruptiosn when it is:

  • Incorrect or incomplete
  • Not relevant to (part of) the intended crew audience
  • Includes outdated information


The tools to manage communications quickly and securely

The combination of swift yet correct communications with a specific group of crew members makes the use of classic communication methods either cumbersome, inefficient or otherwise not the right tool for the job. For example:

  • A phone call is very inefficient and can cause misunderstandings due to bad call quality
  • An email can land in the spam box, can be left unread without the sender knowing
  • Publishing on intranet/crew portal can mean too many or too few people reached
  • WhatsApp doesn’t meet business GDPR compliance regulations


An airline would need a modern platform that provides all the right tools to communicate:

AAL operations control center charlotte

Next step for airline communications: an all-in-one platform to support daily operations

What does every single member of your airline crew have in their pockets?

A smartphone!

RB Connect harnesses the power of modern mobile technology and through our well-loved Crew App, RosterBuster, we empower your airline crew with a user-friendly app on an enterprise and secure level. With RB Connect for airlines, crews are better connected to the operational processes, bringing significant cost savings and higher crew engagement to the airline. With big disruptions like the Amsterdam Airport delays, quick and correct communications between operations and crew is vital.


Learn more about RB Group


Meet the team

Explore career opportunities