Business Intelligence in the Local Public Transport
AMT Genova started using BI tools from the beginning of the 2000s, with a pilot project in the area of personnel. Subsequently, the use of BI has spread within the company as a standard tool to cover all data analysis and reporting needs for the different business areas (sales, service coverage, management control). The pilot project was started using Business Objects Full Client, thereafter to migrate to the WEB version.
AMT has operated for over a century in the service of Genoa, guaranteeing for 365 days a year the connections to users who use public transportation to get around town by bus, subway, ship, funiculars and lifts.
The AMT’s mission is to move the city with a widespread quality service, connect the center to the suburbs, the hilly areas with the coastal area on an inherently hard territory. To ensure the moving throughout the Genoa area, AMT has developed over the years a multimodal system adapting its availability and skills to the needs of the city.
Bus, metro, funicular, rack railway, lifts, connections by sea, rail and minibus respond in a widespread and efficient way to the needs of mobility of the Genoese, overcoming the orographic difficulties of the city territory. The entire network runs for about 900 kilometers, there are 142 bus lines with a fleet of about 684 buses, of which 17 trolley buses; AMT totalizes approximately 54,000 annual subscribers, while 372,000 are the monthly subscriptions sold in a year; the number of passengers is over 360,000 per day.
The Business Intelligence tools, the control of business processes through continuously updated KPI’s allow us the best leverage of our data and to effectively keep costs under control, optimize revenues (pricing and fines) and achieve the best possible economic margin in compliance with the service contract.
Head of Information Systems, AMT
Historically, companies operating in the LPT (Local Public Transport) operated under principles such as service coverage and guarantee. The entire company reporting was developed with a view to verifying the parameters to be respected in terms of KM traveled, service coverage and working hours.
Today, due to the changed historical – economic – political conditions, it is also necessary to think about profit (understood at least as economic sustainability of the business); the service must therefore be interpreted and analyzed through this lens, even if the profit for a company operating in the LPT cannot be separated from its service function. Various management dashboards have therefore been developed that allow you to keep all KPIs under control, both in terms of costs and margins.
The sanctions process was also brought under control with ad hoc analyzes. The system is also used as a tool for improving business processes, in terms of effectiveness and efficiency; in fact, it is from the comparison and overall analysis of the data that it is possible to highlight any anomalous situations.
Why SAP and Iso Sistemi
In 1997 the company, first of the LPT companies in Italy, selected SAP as its ERP system and over the years implemented the various modules to manage business processes related to the areas of administration, finance, control and warehouse, as well as vertical solutions for the management of the service contract and of the sanctions process. A few years later, having collected a large amount of consistent data, the need to deploy a Business Intelligence tool emerged, and the choice fell on the market-leading software that had the following characteristics:
- Ease of use: users can be autonomous in the creation of reports and have several graphic templates at their disposal
- Navigable data within the levels of analysis
- Ability to interface with heterogeneous systems (SAP and non-SAP)
- Integration with the SAP Portal in use at the company.
In these years, AMT entrusted to the partner Iso Sistemi the realization of the most important projects, for its ability to follow all the steps of a Business Intelligence project, starting from the analysis of the processes, progressing through design and development of the solution, until testing and training of the users.
Already in the year 2000, the need emerged to make use of an analysis tool that would allow to control many of the parameters involved in the world of Personnel. AMT has more than 2,000 employees, of which many vehicle crews or maintenance workshop workers, with precise shifting schedules to be covered and respected. In those years the need to control business costs and to optimize the service had become even more pressing.
The journey began from consolidation and certification of data with the creation of the Data Warehouse for the Personnel area that also led to a review of some operating procedures. It then continued with the development of a simple reporting system using SAP BusinessObjects to automate the extractions repetitively generated by the internal Information Systems. The end users gradually became familiar with the instrument and began to independently develop their own analysis and their own reports without recourse to IT resources, which were then used on more technical fronts.
As time went by user needs have evolved, the Data Warehouse has been extended to handle data from different processes and the company moved from simple reporting for control purposes to the need to visualize all data relevant for the management of the company in few dashboards, created with SAP Dashboard, and to provide in-depth analyses of the results highlighted by the dashboards and reports.
SAP BusinessObjects has become an integral part of the Information Systems of which the users now make daily use: the data resident in the Data Warehouse and processed with SAP BusinessObjects are those that are considered as certified. The Data Warehouse is populated daily with data either from SAP and from other business systems.
Downstream the deployment of the Data Warehouse, the identification and sharing of the KPI’s and the related calculation methodology have been fundamental; in collaboration with the users, the IT resources have developed dashboards that are published monthly on the SAP Portal, the official reference for the company. Additionally, the users can independently develop analyses and reports for the specific requirements of their respective function.
The main benefits identified by AMT are:
• Certification and sharing of information and process indicators
• Prevention and elimination of any mismatch between the various business functions
• Dissemination of information
• Timeliness of response times
• Enhanced control of the company’s progress.