IBM (NYSE:IBM) had been handling major IT services for India’s Jet Airways for years, but the relationship is about to get more involved. In addition to its previous IT detail for the airline, IBM will manage call centers, upgrade analytics, and reboot the IT infrastructure over the course of a decade-long contract, according to The Times of India.
Jet Airway is India’s second-largest airline by passengers served and, with its sister airline, has more than 25 percent of the national market. The company has been seeking ways to increase revenue through enhanced technology and streamlined IT services. Its decision to award IBM the 10-year contract left Trans-Continental eServices, its previous provider, out in the cold. Jet saw IBM’s package as the superior way to move forward, build its IT base and increase its power in customer service and hiring practices.
“While there was an existing arrangement, certain process had to be evaluated before extending the partnership,” a Jet Airways representative told the Times, in reference to parting ways with Trans-Continental e-Services. IBM reps are justifiably celebrating the deal.
“This deal marks a significant milestone in the longstanding relationship that IBM has with Jet Airways, and we are committed to helping them elevate their customer experience and future growth,” said Anuj Kumar, who heads the Global Process Services division for IBM in India. “Jet was looking to transform their customer care and back-office functions while ensuring job continuity for its employees,” he added, noting his company had those solutions ready.
Jet Airways had noticed the sustained use of its call centers by customers, who sometimes check in and get flight updates in addition to booking and rescheduling with reps over the phone. The airline sees the time spent on each call as crucial to its earnings in the coming years, and hopes IBM’s IT overhaul will continue delivering on that count.
IBM is increasing its hold in the Indian market and the airline industry in general. According to Kumar, the company has at least seven airline clients.