November 03, 2011, 1:35 PM — BAA, the airport operator that owns Heathrow, has revealed how the implementation of a centralised data management tool has helped it save millions of pounds.It has been using EMC's enterprise content management system Documentum since it started building Heathrow Airport's Terminal 5 13 years ago, and is about to upgrade from version 5.3 to 6.7 of the tool. BAA uses the system to manage all the data relating to the construction and refurbishment of the airport, as well as all critical building information such as the location of underground hot water pipes."By improving information management, we found a document last year that meant we could defend against a claim that saved us £40 million to £50 million," said Tina Burgess, information management leader at BAA.However this was not the main driver for implementing the data management system. BAA initially decided on a single solution to resolve a situation whereby masses of information about the airport was being held in multiple forms, which meant that documents could not be found easily, if at all, when required.
The requirement became important when the public inquiry into the new Terminal 5 began, which meant that BAA had to be able to search and easily find data to respond to any objections in the inquiry.Prior to Documentum, each airport project would buy their own solution, and data would be delivered to BAA on disks and on paper. Duplication of data was also a significant problem."The quantity of information relating to the build of Terminal 5 needed something quite powerful to control it all."Bringing in the [Documentum] solution reduced the amount of information going around, and provides one place where to find the latest information, with better version control," said Andrew Manington, document process manager at BAA.