Business intelligence goes deep underground

London Underground (LU) has undergone significant restructuring to support the Public Private Partnership (PPP), which will see...

London Underground (LU) has undergone significant restructuring to support the Public Private Partnership (PPP), which will see it being divided into four companies, three of which will come under private ownership in 2001.

To support this restructuring and the management of LU's £1bn annual spend on maintenance and development, LU has implemented WebIntelligence, the integrated query and reporting solution supplied by Business Objects' solutions provider Blueprint Management Systems.

Procon, one of the specialist application service providers for LU, extensively redeveloped traditional reporting structures with the aid of Blueprint. "Blueprint's training and skills transfer ensured we were self sufficient in the technology very quickly," says Rob Chambers, IT business manager at Procon.

Business Objects has proved extremely valuable to LU, giving its management up-to-date on-line information. In the past there was a three to four day delay in producing management statistics. "It takes seconds to find out how much work a specific contractor is doing across LU," says Chambers. "That information would have meant painstaking manual investigation in the past." Other business benefits include:

  • Reporting on financial forecasting and project planning

  • Reporting against key performance indicators for the Treasury

  • Cross database reporting

  • Rapid ad hoc information querying

  • Improved information quality

  • Improved information sharing


Working with Blueprint, LU is now looking at using WebIntelligence and is currently using the solution for piloting the publishing of information on an intranet. This will open up information access across LU to an even broader range of users. It will also help support the increased need for information sharing as the companies move into PPP.

"There is a clear need for co-operation between companies," explains Chambers. "Whatever direction LU decides to take, Blueprint has developed future-proof technology to support that."

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