Airbus rolls out KDS system

Airbus has completed its organisation-wide rollout of u.go, its KDS-powered travel reservation system. u.go, which is now live in Spain as well as France, Germany and the UK, manages an average of 4,000 bookings per week for over 60,000 employees and subcontractors, making it the busiest-ever application of KDS’s on-demand travel technology.

Airbus selected KDS because of its ability to integrate the management of all European air and rail travel, including low-cost providers and Airbus’s own charter flights between major European centres. It also wanted a system able to deliver financial savings, improved policy compliance and which could be tailored to the individual requirements of all its European locations.

Since u.go’s launch in October 2005, Airbus has achieved significantly reduced average ticket prices.  By highlighting ‘best buy’ travel options and potential missed savings, the system encourages users to make the optimum travel choice.  As a result of ticket price savings and increased efficiencies, Airbus was able to fully recoup its investment in u.go within just six months.

The success of u.go reflects the high adoption rates achieved across the organisation.  At launch, Airbus was targeting 60 percent adoption across all travel, but surpassed this within six months when adoption reached 70 percent.  By April 2007, user adoption had reached 80 percent as a result of the emphasis that Airbus has placed on internal communications throughout the change process.

James Westgarth, travel technology manager at Airbus, said, “u.go has proved a great success for Airbus and, by providing the ideal technology platform, KDS has played an important part in this.  Together, we have been able to deliver a system that gives a far more rational and efficient basis to our travel and has fully surpassed our initial goals.  We are now targeting 90 percent user adoption across all travel and anticipate further important savings in the coming years.”