Stop by and say hello!

We will be attending a number of events in the next few months. We would love for you to stop by and say hello.

Interested in setting up a time to connect? Feel free to email us at ask@ciswired.com to schedule an appointment or email any of the attendees directly.

We look forward to seeing you soon! 

 

Sabre STX

April 9-12, 2018

Dallas, TX

Mat Orrego, CEO

Email Mat

Lauren Wolters, Director, Marketing

Email Lauren

Mark Abdoo, Director, Product

Email Mark

Jacob Wheeler, Director, Engineering

Email Jacob

 

BCD Travel Affiliates Spring Meeting

April 9-11, 2018

Cancun, Mexico

Michael Kell, Director, Business Development

Email Michael

 

GBTA Ladders Summit

May 14-16, 2018

Miami, FL

Lauren Wolters, Director, Marketing

Email Lauren

 

Phocuswright Europe Conference

May 15-17, 2018

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Mat Orrego, CEO

Email Mat

 

Travel Leaders National Meeting

June 12-16, 2018

Las Vegas, NV

Staci Harris, Global Account Manager

Email Staci

 

GBTA Convention

August 11-15, 2018

San Diego, CA

We’re getting ready for GBTA Convention! Email Lauren Wolters to connect with the Cornerstone team.

Get The Most From Our Products

Education is an essential component of our platform’s offerings. Our technology continues to evolve, with new functionality and capabilities released regularly. To that end, we have expanded our team to evolve our services to serve our customers better.

One of our primary goals is to provide constructive, initial and ongoing education and training for our software solutions. While most of our clients work with our team as part of their delivery and implementation process, they might not be aware of the opportunities for continuing education and training. Currently we offer more than 15 classes for our clients.

 

In-Person Training

Our onsite training covers the most commonly requested training for our solutions. The training goes across iQCX®, iBank®, and TravelOptix®. We recognize that not only do our clients hire new staff that needs training but with recent consolidation, there is larger scale training needs as well.

We also find it critical that current and long-time users refresh their training. With our regular updates and enhancements to the solutions, many users find that there are better and more productive ways to get what they need from the software. We also introduce new features – many of which that have been requested through the years by clients. Without proper training, most users do not take advantage of these features leaving their companies without the newest and best tools to manage their business.

Much of our training has historically focused on the end user since they are the ones who truly work with every button and screen in the software. However, we have worked to expand the audience for training.

Many of the new capabilities, especially in the TravelOptix platform, have advanced configuration options and functionality. In the case of TravelOptix, this means that the business team, who might be involved during the initial setup and then turn over operations to an operations center or technology team, need to be engaged again. Discussions regarding new data feed(s) available, new report types, and broadcast capabilities need to engage this distinct audience.

In addition to the classes available, we also offer custom education for you. Our trainers will work with your account manager to develop a training curriculum based on your unique blend of solutions and specific company needs. These services enable us to provide the class – or series of classes – best suited for your team.

We find that onsite training allows for not only more attendees but also for different mixes of attendees, ensuring that the business, operations, and technology teams are working together with the solutions to achieve their company objectives.

 

Online Training

We recognize that in-person training may not be an option for all our clients, and we are expanding our online training sessions with more than 10 classes available. These classes, all under two hours, are designed for one person who needs to brush up on their skills or learn a new part of the tools. It is great for those who need a refresher or wants to know how to best leverage a new capability.

Online training is available on your schedule. We recognize that it is not possible for everyone to visit our team in Bloomington, Indiana or host our team at your office. Online training lets you and your organization access the education you need when you need it.

To learn more about our Education Services Department and schedule your training, please contact your Account Manager or Jim Ehinger.

Blockchain – A Technological Paradox

block·chain

ˈbläkˌCHān/

noun

a digital ledger in which transactions made in bitcoin or another cryptocurrency are recorded chronologically and publicly.

 

Blockchain has emerged into more conversations last year and has become synonymous with Bitcoin in the mainstream media. Don’t believe us? Watch actor Michael Keaton get asked about bitcoin by the paparazzi as he left a restaurant in December.

We’re seeing conversations about blockchain pick up more speed in 2018. But outside of technology teams and gurus, what does it mean for the bigger picture?

Let’s start with answering a key question. What is blockchain?

Blockchain is not a new technology. Blockchain is a new way of leveraging existing technology. It’s taking a Lego playset and building something new with it. When we look at the speed at which our industry will adopt this new structure, we need to look back.

In 2000, almost twenty years ago, we had similar conversations cross our industry regarding APIs and web services. While blockchain is promising, it’s important to remember that changing core technological infrastructure takes time.

 

What makes blockchain so promising?

The paradox of blockchain is that it makes data more secure while making it more accessible. Usually people trade security for increased access. Think about everything Facebook quiz someone takes. People hand over a large amount of personal information to find out what type of cheese they are. They trade security for information they want. Blockchain flips this process.

With blockchain, data is decentralized and distributed across a structure. Data is secured in each block, and the blocks are connected. Blockchain allows for access to a single general ledger – think of the world’s largest Google sheet – available to all parties at all times. This single, shared general ledger is why blockchain has gained traction in cryptocurrencies, especially Bitcoin.

The shared, single ledger streamlines communications and workflows, driving greater efficiency and accuracy. In practical application, blockchain reduces errors and discrepancies because the source contract is singular and shared.

When we look closely at our industry, there is a clear analogous example with travel bookings. The general ledger becomes the master trip record, with all parties able to see and access the latest information regarding a booking or set of bookings. The unicorn of travel challenges.

The general ledger as a master trip record means access to more data. The entire concept of Big Data shifts. It’s not the act of storing all the data in single data lake and accessing the data that’s the challenge any more – the challenge is understand that the data analysis occurs in the lake as more data is fed into it.

With blockchain, we could access a single set of flight information. We’ve all experienced discrepancies between what the airline is saying about a flight, what the airport says, whatever travel app you might use, and even the agent at the gate. A single source for all flight information, used by all parties, would eliminate this problem. Completely. We would all see the same information. SITA Lab, the research arm of SITA, recently published a white paper on FlightChain, a blockchain process they’re testing to create “a single source of truth for flight data.”

 

Where’s the catch?

The challenge with blockchain is this – how do you control distributed systems when all regulations were created to function in a regulated system?

We have long worked together as an industry to protect data, followed protocols set forth by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council and the EU General Data Protection Regulation. These are protocols designed to keep information secure and protect individuals.

We think that there’s an exciting future with blockchain. It’s the first time that a technology can move our industry closer to the single, global traveler PNR.

There is an opportunity, and there needs to be an expectation, that IATA and SITA will work together on blockchain standards across travel from flight information to traveler details in order to create a future where data is both more accessible and more secure.