Case Study: Denver International Airport

Denver International Airport use online training to provide a common baseline understanding of airport issues

The Customer

Denver International Airport (DEN) is the 20th busiest airport in the world and the 5thbusiest airport in the United States (US). Over 61.4 million passengers pass through DEN each yearmaking it one of the busiest hubs in the world. This airport connects to over 200 destinations around the globe. DEN generates over $26 billion for the state of Colorado annually and is currently the primary economic engine. In 2018 DEN was rated as the 29th “Best Airport in the World” by Skytrax – making it #1 in the US.

The Challenge

Airports operate in one of the most challenging and dynamic industries in the world. More and more pressure has been placed on airports to keep up-to-date with ever-changing technologies and in turn industry regulations. Compounding these challenges is the fact that an airport’s workforce is made up of staff who are highly skilled in different fields and have a wide range of experience. This means that the varied workforce does not necessarily have a mutual understanding of airport operations, maintenance, business and customer service.

The Solution

In order to ensure that staff had a shared understanding of the various components of airport operations and the same baseline of knowledge, training was rolled out through the Online Learning Centre (OLC).

The first course to be undertaken by the Airport Operations leadership team was OLC’s Airport Operations Diploma Program (AODP). The Diploma program was then rolled out to the Managers and Supervisors in the Airport Operations division.

The Results

The training through the OLC helped staff from all areas of Airport Operations to be more aware of the many activities involved in airport management. It gave each unit a greater appreciation of the diverse set of skills that are needed for an airport to run effectively. The training also gave the Operations Division the opportunity to have productive discussions and collaborate on major projects.

Dave LaPorte, Senior Vice President of DEN’s Airport Operations division, commented that:

“I have a talented team in Airport Operations, but with their varied strengths and backgrounds I wanted to make sure we were all able to approach conversations with at least a minimum common baseline understanding of airport issues. The training allowed us to ensure that common baseline understanding.”

Steve Lee A.A.E., the Director of Operations Support, who completed the training remarked that:

“Most of the training was a helpful review of the areas I work with on a regular basis. However, it made me think more about areas I don’t directly deal with frequently. I found myself better understanding what is important to my colleagues in other Divisions.”

Furthermore, the rolling out of online training meant that the staff could complete the training at their own pace and within their different work schedules.


The ACI Online Learning Centre would like to thank Denver International Airport’s Operations team for taking the time to assist the OLC in developing this article.