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Photos: Singapore Airlines launches digital innovation lab for staff

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Note: This story has been updated with exclusive responses from an SIA spokesperson containing further details about the KrisLab and LIFE festival.

Singapore Airlines yesterday (29 January) launched its digital innovation lab, KrisLab, as well as the Learning and Innovation For Everyone (LIFE) festival for employees.

In a media release, the airline noted, KrisLab will serve as a collaborative workspace for SIA Group staff to develop innovative ideas and co-innovate with external partners, start-ups, established incubators and accelerators, enabling the SIA Group to fully embrace digitalisation and technology in all aspects of its business operations.

The opening of KrisLab at the SIA Group Sports Club was officiated by Minister for Trade and Industry, Chan Chun Sing, in the presence of representatives from key partner organisations.


The unveiling of KrisLab is in line with the airline’s Digital Innovation Blueprint. Launched in 2018, under the blueprint, SIA is working to develop and nurture the digital aviation and travel technology community in Singapore, through collaborative partnerships with organisations such as the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), National University of Singapore (NUS) and other partners, together with support from the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) and the Economic Development Board (EDB).

Singapore Airlines CEO, Goh Choon Phong, said: "The launch of KrisLab is a significant step forward in our digital transformation journey and encapsulates our ambition to be the leading digital airline in the world. We are fully committed to further enhancing our digital capabilities by providing the right tools and infrastructure for staff to develop their ideas, as well as collaborating with external partners and start-ups to help solve business challenges."

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In the digital innovation lab, staff will explore technology - such as blockchain, mixed reality devices, artificial intelligence and data analytics, among others - as they develop their digital initiatives. All employees across the SIA Group may submit ideas and solutions for evaluation by the Digital Innovation Lab (DIL) team.

Ideas will be evaluated and approved based on technological and implementation readiness, as well as market and strategic attractiveness. Once an idea has been approved, seed funding along with expertise provided by the DIL team is provided to help further develop it into a prototype, before moving to the implementation stage.

Aside from helping employees develop their innovative ideas to fruition, the DIL team has been working with research institutions such as A*STAR and NUS on research in deep-tech areas. This will give SIA a competitive edge in areas such as revenue management, smart seats, virtual training, and predictive maintenance for aircraft, among others.

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The KrisLab was designed by students from LASALLE College of the Arts in a competition intended to help nurture young design talents and provide students an opportunity to translate theories learned in the classroom into practical industry experience.

Update: In response to queries by Human Resources, about hiring plans in line with the KrisLab launch, an SIA spokesperson said: "SIA is always on the lookout for talents – people with the expertise, skills and experiences to enrich the talent pool within SIA."

The DIL team currently has a strong base team of nine members in a variety of roles - in the areas of technology development and research, engagements, and partnerships - collaborating with both internal SIA contributors and start-up partners.

The spokesperson added: "We are on the lookout for the right talents to join the passionate and dynamic DIL team, to work together to catalyse SIA’s digital ambition to be the leading digital airline.

As DIL scales in line with the growing digitalisation of SIA’s business operations,  there will be more opportunities to join DIL and KrisLab."

Learning and Innovation For Everyone festival

To nurture digital mindsets in staff as part of the digital transformation coinciding with the opening of KrisLab, SIA has also launched the LIFE festival for SIA Group employees.

The three-day learning festival seeks to celebrate and strengthen SIA’s innovative culture and encourage employees to embrace continuous learning through training and apply these new skills and competencies in their workplace and daily lives.

During the LIFE festival, employees can participate in workshops and attend talks by a host of industry leaders who are paving the way forward in their respective digitalisation journeys. They will also be able to experience and learn from their peers at an interactive showcase featuring digital and new technologies that are being adopted across the SIA Group.

Update: The LIFE festival will be held from 30 January 2019 to 1 February 2019.

The talks will include the following topics:

  • Business transformation
  • Disruption and innovation
  • Data driven value creation
While the interactive workshops include topics such as design thinking, as well as agile and blockchain.

They will also be able to gain further insights into ongoing initiatives across the company through learning showcases.

During the event, staff will also have the opportunity to experience the KrisLab tour and LIFE showcases on the future of aviation and travel with SIA.

Photos / Singapore Airlines

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