The Go-Ahead Group, one of Britain’s major transport companies, is employing Microsoft’s Power BI and cloud-based platform Azure to collate data in a single place so it can benefit its passengers.
Operating rail and bus services across not just the UK but in Ireland, Germany, Norway and Singapore as well, the transport company is using a host of Microsoft tools including Azure Data Lake, Databricks and Data Factory to hold and analyse information from all its operations.
Through utilising Power BI in order to visualise its anonymised data gathered from two million individual passenger trips made using its buses each day, management teams at Go-Ahead can acquire new insights like demand for certain services and the time estimated before a bus turns up at a designated stop.
This in-depth study can help Go-Ahead have the correct vehicles in the correct places exactly when they are supposed to be. The research also helps the travel company spot the bus stops used less frequently, allowing them to reroute services to cover increased demand at busier locations.
Interim Group IT Director for G0-Ahead, Kanwar Brar explained:
“We wanted to be able to see which parts of our network are busy in real-time, and Azure enables us to do that. We have been able to implement Azure, Office 365 and Power BI quickly and they fit really well together. As we have broken down data silos at Go-Ahead, we have been able to grow our use of technology without a huge effort and at a lower cost. Azure is much cheaper than our on-premise data storage solution was.”
Every year, approximately one billion individual passenger journeys are undertaken using Go-Ahead’s services and the company is also London’s largest bus operator. Providing nearly a third of all UK train journeys, the transport company also has the busiest rail operation in the country.
Go-Ahead currently employs around 30,000 people across the UK and is now undergoing a full digital transformation designed to benefit both its staff and the travellers its serves. The company has recently rolled out its Go-Check application. Running on Azure, it allows its drivers to assess and ensure that their bus is always road safe.
“We can identify any vehicles that may not have been checked, to ensure we always have a safe fleet of buses on the road.”
The app allows drivers to log details, as well as capture digital images of vehicle defects before sending them to officed-based support teams who schedule any repairs necessary.
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