Honours go to code pioneers

Effective and profitable re-use of systems, code and facilities was a strong theme among the winners of The Infrastructure...

Effective and profitable re-use of systems, code and facilities was a strong theme among the winners of The Infrastructure Forum's (Tif) Excellence in Business 2002 Awards last week.

IT managers at British Airports Authority (BAA), advertising agency Grey Worldwide, Nationwide Building Society and Bupa, all earned accolades from their peers.

  • Overall winner was BAA's nine-month Heathrow-based project to consolidate its UK-wide computing. The project, which reduced 16 computer rooms to two, was completed eight days early and more than £100,000 under budget, bringing savings of over £1m a year, plus a 28% improvement in systems performance.

    Mark Ryan, infrastructure projects programme manager at BAA, said, "We are proud of the achievement in synchronising a demanding IT consolidation programme with the tight building construction project timetable. The Heathrow Datacentre was a challenging programme involving major construction work, IT systems insourcing and the development of IT infrastructure."

  • Grey Worldwide's intranet for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, drawn together using the company's library of reusable code, won the Tif award for innovation.

    "The most positive part was having a really good working relationship with the business team. The award is as much for the business team as for the IT team," said chief information officer, Anne Marie Wolfe.

    "The technology challenge was videostreaming TV ads to offices in places like Kenya and Slovenia," she said. "We wanted them to see award-winning work across the network, so we needed low, medium and high bandwidth viewing streams. My biggest challenge was to make the content exciting, to balance features with quality and comfort," she added.

  • Bupa's installation of a platform to grow its telesales system was highly commended for profitability. The system paid for itself quickly by increasing business by 5% with 5% fewer staff, while retention rose by 1%.

  • Also commended was the Nationwide Building Society's multi-device customer access, which involved heavy use of reusable objects to future-proof the system enabling Nationwide to launch Europe's first pocket PC banking service.

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