11/10/2003 - Fujitsu’s STAR, Station Terminals for Advanced Rail-retailing, has been formally accredited for use in UK station ticket offices by Rail Settlement Plan Ltd (RSP). RSP is the central controlling body that coordinates the collection and settlement of the £3bn per annum of train fares paid by the travelling public.
STAR has been specifically designed to help the UK’s 26 Train Operating Companies (TOCs) improve the speed and quality of service provided to passengers at station ticket offices. Being a modern retailing solution, STAR can also help TOCs simplify back office administration tasks and reduce operating costs.
Unlike the railway’s legacy ticket issuing systems, STAR is designed to be fully compatible with the new Chip & PIN technologies, which will make credit and debit cards transactions more secure. TOCs, in common with other retailers, must be Chip & PIN ready before January 2005, or face increased merchant charges from banks and a higher risk of credit card fraud. This deadline means that TOCs must modernise their ticketing systems in the next 12 months, requiring an investment of over £50m for ticket offices alone.
STAR is a new system, borne out of Fujitsu’s extensive experience in both the rail and retail markets, and it is integrated with the national Rail Journey Information System (RJIS), used by all Train Operating Companies and operated by Fujitsu. STAR brings greater retail functionality than current industry systems: as well as selling rail tickets, it can support new marketing initiatives and promotions and allow retail services such as cashback and loyalty schemes to be offered to passengers.
Richard Dickson of Fujitsu Services said, “This is a huge opportunity for train companies to enhance customer service. As the Government seeks to build a new railway for the 21st Century, the Strategic Rail Authority (SRA) is demanding improvements in customer service and reductions in queuing time for passengers. STAR will help TOCs deliver on these commitments. It supports a streamlined sales process, allowing ticket clerks to serve customers more quickly, and provides them with more and better information. Most importantly, it cuts down time spent on administration processes, allowing staff to spend more time focusing on passengers.”
About Fujitsu Services
Fujitsu Services is one of the leading IT services companies in Europe, Middle East and Africa. It has an annual turnover of £1.86 billion (€2.8bn), employs 13,100 people and operates in over 20 countries. It designs, builds and operates IT systems and services for customers in the financial services, telecom, retail, utilities and government markets. Its core strength is the delivery of IT infrastructure management and outsourcing across desktop, networking and data centre environments, together with a full range of related services, from infrastructure consulting through integration and deployment.
Headquartered in London, Fujitsu Services is the European-centred IT services arm of the Fujitsu Group. The Fujitsu Group is a US$38 billion (€35 billion) leader in customer-focused IT systems and services for the global marketplace. Fujitsu Services website: http://uk.fujitsu.com
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