Computer Reservation Systems Auditing Headaches in the Airline Industry Case Study

The Real problem
Can we really help?!
‡ By Evon Abu-Taieh Computer Information Systems Department Amman-Jordan Phone:-962-6-5858822, Fax: 962-6-552-7233 Email:Evon2k@yahoo.com

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Kindly hold your questions till the end of presentation

"If small businesses wish to increase their profitability and gross sales then they are well advised to consider not only putting into place good strategic measures but to computerize accounting and recording systems as these are also related to sound preparation of operating budgets which contribute to financial effectiveness." ‡ Dr. Monir Zaman , Central Queensland University
‡ http://www.bus.cqu.edu.au/Faculty/News/november2001/serzamangadenne.htm

What is GDS & CRS?
‡ CRS: a Computer Reservation System for an
individual airline containing information on that airline only and used by that airlines¶ employees.

‡ GDS: Global Distribution System - a computer
reservation and information system that is often operated by multiple airlines, used by travel agents & other travel professionals and contains information on all types of travel products. It is also used for hotel, car rental, etc..

Airline Reservations Before CRS¶s ‡ Manual processing of calls from agents ‡ Costly call centers to handle growing air travel volume .

APOLLO.no down time. PARS. .History Of CRS ‡ Prior to 1960-: availability boards and ³Lazy Susan´ & desk sets for travel agents. ‡ 1953-64: IBM and American Airlines created SABRE ± new operating system (Transaction Processing Facility) ± fast response time (< 3seconds) ± international network .g. ‡ 1965-1976: other similar systems were developed e.

‡ 1978: Co-host program ‡ 1980¶s: many airlines merge partially due to CRS needs ‡ 1986: GDS operations split off from airline.Beginning Of GDS concept ‡ 1974: Joint Industry Computerized Reservation System (JICRS) was initiated. ‡ 1976: Retail automation: terminals in travel agents offices. .

.Global Connectivity ‡ 1981/2: SystemOne and DATAS ‡ 1987: Galileo and Amadeus in Europe and Abacus in Asia. ‡ 1995: SystemOne and Amadeus merge. ‡ 1990: PARS & DATAS merge to form WORLDSPAN ‡ 1993: Galileo and Apollo merge.

Air France. BA.Alitalia. Air Canada. Aer Lingus ‡ Lufthansa. TransWorld. Iberia. USAir. Swiss. Abacus ‡ AMADEUS ‡ WORLDSPAN .Major Airline Affiliations with GDS ‡ SABRE ‡ Tavelocity On line ‡ GALILEO ‡ American Airlines ‡ UAL. Continental ‡ Delta. KLM. NW. Austrian.

gather competitive data on seat allocations. This allows res system providers to participate in other airlines¶ growth.Offer co-hosting services to other airlines which can display their seats on the res system.The competition will be determined in the following value added services where GDSs seems to build a strong position.Offer a product portfolio of integrated booking services for airline tickets. and direct marketing campaigns according to the data. . . (as co-hoster or res system provider) . changes in the markets for seats. hotel and car reservations.Collect. Integrated services . (as res system provider) Co-hosting . store and analyze data on customers. most attractive routes. Res System Yield management .Building a partner network will create a competitive advantage.

GDS Accessibility GDS Interface Booking Engine GDS data network INTERNET Consumer Travel Agency .

GDS Hardware software ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ Sabre Galileo/Apollo Amadeus Worldspan Oracle Oracle Oracle Oracle database sun java sun sun usesCompaq Web servers .

8% 30.1% .Market Shares of the GDS Air Segments Booked ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ Sabre Galileo Amadeus Worldspan 32.7% 24.4% 12.

000 15% 41% 39.000 155.000 18.Market Share of Travel Agencies Number of Terminals ‡ Sabre Galileo ‡ Amadeus ‡ Worldspan 59.5% 4.000 160.6% .

TRAVEL AGENT USE of GDS ‡ 98% of all agencies in US are connected to GDS ‡ some have multiple systems ‡ they use GDS to book: ± ± ± ± ± ± 95% domestic air 86% international air 74% car rentals 55% hotel bookings 60% rail 7% cruise .

Airlines and other suppliers CRS CRS CRS Systems and infrastructure public / private network GDS public / private network Customers travel agent travel agent .

Airline Agent aMaDUES Customer Auditor Customer .

networkmagazine.CRS and Internet ‡ The Travelocity site has more than 300.com/case_studies/working. and ‡ can churn out 30 to 40 Web pages per second ‡ database handler being able to process 5.000 requests per second ‡ * From www. ‡ their servers are powerful and fast.html .000 Web pages which can be searched instantaneously.

Agent & CRS ‡ Interface (see next slides) ‡ Speed (GemStone's Facets 2.0 & SynXis) .

Interface & GDS/CRS ‡ .

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Used : JBoss application server and GemStone Facets 2.000 reservation related messages per day. with real-time critical business data availability helping their customers consolidate and control hotel inventory across all distribution channels.0 & SynXis ‡ SynXis: a leading provider of reservation management and distribution systems for the hospitality industry. Now they are able to : to easily process an average of over 400. The GemStone technology allows us to respond to each of these inquiries within 1-2 seconds and has enabled SynXis to increase customer base from 500 to over 2500 hotels in the last 12 months.0 object database caching technology over other leading providers. These benefits will in turn help customers access reservation details faster and with more accuracy while allowing SynXis to develop the solution within our existing infrastructure.Speed and CRS/GDS Case : GemStone's Facets 2." * from sunjava ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ .

The Auditing Problem .

transaction and flight date False class .Why Audit? ‡ To cut distribution costs.20$ for each False names= $$$ Over booking Waite list Issuing tickets and canceling them Open flight # False dates :. you must reduce computer reservation fees. the problem boils down to MONEY ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± Duplicate reservation= loss $$$ Booking and canceling= loss $$$ . such as passive and duplicate bookings in other words ‡ After what is all said and done.

AAA .000 With 2698 bad names i.e test.Why Audit? ‡ In one BIDT the difference between the audited and not audit bill was $25.

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txt . ‡ Airline must check and audit the data.DBA . GDS .Auditing: How? ‡ GDS/CRS send to Airline BIDT with BILL every month.Dat .RAW Airline GDS Auditor Travel Agents Rejects & bills audited .

What is BIDT? ‡ ‡ BIDT Monthly reports that capture detailed information on every booking a CRS subscriber makes on a participating airline¶s behalf Benefits ± Assists accountants in monthly reconciliation for more accurate billing records ± Enhances understanding of GDS billing activities. flight date/number. and booking class ± Electronically sorts information to produce a variety of valuable reports ± Is deliverable electronically. transaction-level information for each subscriber. city pairs. on hard-copy tape. including fees ± Combines with Marketing Information Data transfer (MIDT) for improved trend analysis and targeted business planning : ‡ Attributes ± Includes detailed. transaction date. including IATA number. or CD-ROM .

dept time.To Territory Line type Billing category See Example . arrival time Reservation date Name of passenger From .BIDT Segments ‡ BIDT includes ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± ± PNR: Passenger Record Number Flight # Flight date.

Example of BIDT Raw data 200301RJ 512 HUSD000000001000000000 200301RJ 512 645DN3ZP01501840000134872SPRINGDALE TRAVEL MOBILE ALUS1 0000000020030129AMS AMM 010420030219M NNSSN53ELWSG0010452000000045200000USDNJULINOT/HELMUT N06+00000 200301RJ 512 645DN3ZP01501840000134872SPRINGDALE TRAVEL MOBILE ALUS1 0000000020030129AMM AMS 010320030226M NNSSN53ELWSG0010452000000045200000USDNJULINOT/HELMUT N06+00000 200301RJ 512 645DN44G01575180000500533WRIGHT TRAVEL HUNTSVILLE ALUS1 0000000020030112AMM BEY 040120030112M TKTKN57WUYZ60010452000000045200000USDNELARO/GEORGE N06+00000 200301RJ 512 645DN44G01575180000500533WRIGHT TRAVEL HUNTSVILLE ALUS1 0000000020030117AMM JFK 026120030118M HKHXC57WUYZ60010452000000045200000USDNELARO/GEORGE N06+00000 200301RJ 512 645DN44G01575180000500533WRIGHT TRAVEL HUNTSVILLE ALUS1 0000000020030117AMM JFK 026120030118M UCUCC17WUYZ60010404000000040400000USDNELARO/GEORGE N06+00000 200301RJ 512 645DN44G01575180000500533WRIGHT TRAVEL HUNTSVILLE ALUS1 0000000020030117BEY AMM 040220030118M HKHXC57WUYZ60010452000000045200000USDNELARO/GEORGE N06+00000 200301RJ 512 645DN44G01575180000500533WRIGHT TRAVEL HUNTSVILLE ALUS1 0000000020030117AMM JFK 026120030118N NNSSN57WUYZ60010452000000045200000USDNELARO/GEORGE N06+00000 200301RJ 512 645DN44G01575180000500533WRIGHT TRAVEL HUNTSVILLE ALUS1 0000000020030117BEY AMM 040220030118M NNSSN57WUYZ60010452000000045200000USDNELARO/GEORGE N06+00000 200301RJ 512 645DNAPS01591670000507243NN AETC/MAXWELL AFB MAXWELL AIR FORALUS1 0000000020030108FRA AMM 012620030114Y NNHKC57XRJNI0040414000000165600000USDNMURRAY/ERNEST N05+00000 200301RJ 512 645DNAPS01591670000507243NN AETC/MAXWELL AFB MAXWELL AIR FORALUS1 0000000020030108FRA AMM 012620030114Y NNHKC5LXU8RX0040414000000165600000USDNBOGGS/CLINTON N05+00000 200301RJ 512 645DNAPS01591670000507243NN AETC/MAXWELL AFB MAXWELL AIR FORALUS1 0000000020030108FRA AMM 012620030114Y NNHKC57XYPFB0030414000000124200000USDNHENRY/NATHAN N05+00000 200301RJ 512 645DNAPS01591670000507243NN AETC/MAXWELL AFB MAXWELL AIR FORALUS1 0000000020030108FRA AMM 012620030114Y NNHKC5MN7N890010414000000041400000USDNMINGGIA/TRAMEL N05+00000 200301RJ 512 645DNAPS01591670000507243NN AETC/MAXWELL AFB MAXWELL AIR FORALUS1 0000000020030108FRA AMM 012620030114Y NNHKC5MN2GJN0010414000000041400000USDNRYBACKI/JAMES N05+00000 200301RJ 512 645DNAPS01591670000507243NN AETC/MAXWELL AFB MAXWELL AIR FORALUS1 0000000020030108FRA AMM 012620030114Y NNSSN57XRJNI0040414000000165600000USDNMURRAY/ERNEST N05+00000 .

‡ Scattered data (segment).000 per month per CRS/GDS) ‡ Different CRS/GDS has different BIDT Format. .000-300.Why Audit is so hard? ‡ Too much data (more than 100. ‡ Tedious and Time-consuming ‡ Each CRS/GDS has its own way of billing base and rules and lookups ± business rules ‡ Business rules change almost every year ‡ Need for intersect data from different GDS/CRS.

3.6.8.C.B.5.4.4.7.9) ± Transaction Type (B.Example of hardship How to calculate a bill ‡ Each segment has Five important field: ± Link type(A.2.6) ± Bill category( 1.5.3.D) ± Territory(1.2.T): Booked canceled ticketed ± Availability (I/_) CHARGE = EACH COBINATION HAS A PRICE AND THEY INTERSECT when booked and canceled ALL This for one GDS/CRS See Excel example .C.

Example of hardship intersection ‡ Data intersect not only cross GDS/CRS But Also on months (45 days claims) BIDT Sabre month#1 BIDT Galileo month#1 BIDT Amadeus month#1 BIDT Worldspan month#1 BIDT Sabre month#2 BIDT Galileo month#2 BIDT Amadeus month#2 BIDT Worldspan month#2 .

ciswired.Is there any Audit Software available? ‡ YES«.. ± ± ± ± Produces too many reports (as if s/he needs more) Reports very hard to follow Most software are not WYSIWYG Expensive .com ‡ BUT«. ± Zeus ± Cornerstone www.

Examples of reports ‡ Duplicate PAX ± By agency ± By GDS ‡ Top Ten Travel Agents ‡ Invoice Match ‡ By Status Code ‡ By country code ‡ By booking class ‡ Cost by ± Booking class ± By agency ± Link type ± Billing detail Remember that each GDS/CRS provide the Auditor of the airline 100s of 1000s of segments (Records) .

Is the Auditor expected to be an SQL statement. selecting from different data bases? How can we Help?? .

± MUST be Distributed in nature and on line .Proposed Solution ‡ Computer system that provides the following: ± GUI ± WYSIWYG ± Easy to handle ± Accurate ± Flexible: because rules are changing.

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