BA is considering deploying a company-wide ERP system to help it cope with increasingly tight margins in the air-travel industry.
The system would be one of the biggest ERP deployments in Europe, if the project gets off the ground.
BA CIO Paul Coby told Computer Weekly, "We have standalone ERP systems in our engineering and human resources departments, and are now considering a company-wide deployment to help maximise efficiency."
He said, "Any such system will have to wash its face in terms of justifying itself as a company-wide roll-out, but we expect to make a decision by the end of the calendar year."
The two ERP supplier companies in pole position for a BA company-wide roll-out would be SAP and Oracle.
BA completed a six-year project to deliver ERP in engineering and maintenance in 2006.
The project involved replacing 150 legacy applications with SAP, which now controls aircraft maintenance in 26 hangars and at 142 airports worldwide. EWS also controls engineering staffing, spares supply and airworthiness data.
BA said the benefits of EWS included improved accuracy in tracking maintenance requirements and quicker processes for ordering parts.
Oracle is used to power the airline's HR function.
Coby was speaking at the annual SITA Air Transport IT Summit. At the summit, IATA director general Giovanni Bisignani said airlines would have to optimise their ERP systems, as part of a raft of measures, to make sure their IT was in good enough order to ride the oil price crisis plagueing the industry.