Meet Our AiQ Team – Managing Director – Derek Allen


Derek is our Managing Director, overseeing the business on a non-operational level. In the next part of our Meet The Team series we talk about what he brings to AiQ and the next steps for the company.

What is a typical day like at AiQ?

Although I don’t work on AiQ projects full time I do oversee the figures, and work with the rest of the management team at the monthly board meeting. We look at finance, projections, sales pipelines and marketing campaigns, both on- and offline.

The Cranfield University Airport Planning and Management post graduate course, has been a venue good source of mature, post graduate level people for our recruitment. We have established close links with the course tutors on the course and they have been a pleasure to work with.

I work with the people in the business, looking at resourcing issues and whether we need to recruit. We work very closely with Cranfield School of Management so I sit on the board and review final dissertations for the students on the postgraduate Airport Planning and Management course.

My core business is the 12-partner, 25 year old this year, national business consultancy called CMC Partners. We have worked with thousands of companies throughout their life cycles to improve their performance. At this level I treat AiQ much like a client. As well as being very clever at what we do, we need to ensure good corporate and commercial guidance at all times.

What’s the best bit of your job?

Seeing the rapid growth of AiQ, tapping into a new market, especially with the speed of online marketing on a worldwide business. 25 years ago there was just the Yellow Pages and a fax machine, but now it is literally a global village.

What is it like working alongside your talented team members?

Every day is different but working with high calibre people – not just regarding software or physics – their whole view of the world is challenging. They are clever people producing simple, elegant solutions with the use our bespoke software Transvison AiR. They define and solve customer problems with quick and accurate answers, and ensure that stakeholders buy into the solutions.

Do you have a passion for aviation or consultancy?

I have always been fascinated by airports and the hive of activity – logistics, people, queues etc. This interest probably routed from an early age with watching the impressive 707’s along the flightpath above my grandparents house in Heston. Interestingly, my grandmother worked in Heathrow after the war when many of the terminals were tents!

My passion is for the consultancy. We set the business up as a management consultancy and that consultancy approach is key to AiQ as its not just about providing engineering and technical solutions. We don’t produce solutions for the sake of it – we provide simple solutions and buy in. It is management consultancy and delivery in a way that is elegant to the user.

What does the future hold for AiQ?

We have defined a niche clearly and we plan to extend that service. From talking to our clients, it is clear that we provide a respected service and software model that they find very valuable.

When we provide solutions, especially concerning our unique 2D modelling software Transvision AiR, we do so on a different model to competitors. You don’t buy the tool, but the service.  This ensures that the service is affordable and relatively hassle free. There’s no need to train up staff or spend thousands on your capital expenditure budget. We provide specialists that are Best in Class, as and when you need them. Our ownership model allows you to produce and maintain seasonal plans very simply with a retainer fee, without investing in equipment, software and training.

This is something that our clients have found very useful, and we plan to focus on this approach in the future.

Click here to read about how we work and about Transvision AiR