Crossrail is a major railway link currently being built under central London. It is the biggest engineering project in Europe and is a major part of the Mayor’s Transport Strategy. The aim of Crossrail is to build an underground transport service which will connect 37 stations around London. Some of the proposed routes are Maidenhead to Heathrow and Shenfield to Abbey Wood. The project also includes building new Crossrail train stations, which will be located at Farringdon, Liverpool Street, Tottenham Court Road, Paddington, Whitechapel and Canary Wharf. Work on the project began in 2009 after 35 years of planning. The transport link consists of 21km of tunnels and is expecting to be used by 200 million passengers every year. The project is expected to cost around £15 billion and the first trains will start to run in 2018. Funding for the project has been acquired through Transport for London (TFL), London businesses and residents of London. At the height of production 14,000 people are expected to be needed to work on construction. In addition to providing London with a new railway system, the overall aims of the project is to reduce journey times and the amount of crowding and congestion on current London transport. For a project of this size, multiple contracts with engineering and machinery firms, as well as designing their own equipment in-house. Crossrail have designed the tunnel boring machines (TBM) which will be used to make the Crossrails underground tunnels. The boring machinery is designed to make the tunnels which will connect the different stations by excavating material from under London. The IT director Neil Farmer has previously had a CIO role at SAB Miller and Group IT director role at Chubb. Farmer has the role of managing all the contracts and individual parts of the construction process.The company has a contract with Bentley Systems, which have the task of transforming the Building Information Modelling (BIM). This will make Bentley BIM technology available across the project supply chain via a newly-created Bentley/ Crossrail BIM academy. IT leader:Neil Farmer, IT Director. In role since:August 2010. Reporting line:Finance director (CFO). How often does the CIO meet with the CEO:Most weeks. Board level seat:Not on the board but part of the leadership team. IT budget:Varies between £20-30 million depending on project activity. As Europe’s largest infrastructure project organisation we do not have a turnover but IT costs are expected to be at circa 1.5% of overall project expenditure over the life of the project to 2019. IT estate and or number of log on accounts under the control of the IT leader: Around 2,000-2,200 users, which is growing and is larger than the workforce as we have a number of licensed users of our systems within our supply chain. Level of the workforce that relies on technology to carry out their tasks: 100% of Crossrail employees and delivery partner organisations have a Crossrail login. IT staff currently employed:Lean in-house organisation of 35 supplemented by service providers for projects and commodity IT services. Split between in-house/outsourced staff: Circa 25% in-house; 75% outsourced. IT management team and reporting structure:Five direct reports plus a Personal Assistant, Head of Business Systems & Planning; Head of Application Support & Development: Head of IT Service and Infrastructure; Outsource IT Services Director, Head of Special Projects. Primary technology platforms at the organisation:Crossrail is a project organisation. We use project specific software for the civil engineering, this includes Bentley Systems for administration of contracts, engineering design management, document control and asset management, Prism from ARES for cost control, Primavera from Oracle for schedule management as well as SAP for Finance and Procurement. Primary technology suppliers: Fujitsu. Percentage of your applications/infrastructure run from the cloud:90% of infrastructure is virtualised and is running as a private cloud hosted by Fujitsu. There are also a limited number of SaaS applications being hosted externally. Major technology or transformation project recently completed and how did it transform operations, customer experience or the organisation: Server virtualisation, desktop virtualisation linked to Office 2010 rollout delivers increased mobility, flexibility, logon anywhere on any device at home or office, simplifies support and reduces costs. Did the above project reach its cost, timing and transformation objective: Yes, on time, under budget. Business transformation programme – beyond technology – that the CIO owns or is a major contributor to: Development of Crossrail’s BIM (Building Information Modelling) Strategy which will help articulate the requirements and envision what world-class railway operation and maintenance means and the information-needs to support it. This covers modelling the design for construction, the asset information required (and a plan to gather it) and how the information will be used by the rail operating company. Strategic aim of the CIO and IT operation for the next financial year: To drive to completion our enterprise information strategy. This needs to incorporate the vision and requirements for world-class operation and maintenance of the railway, the BIM requirements for delivery and commissioning of the railway, agreed standards for recording asset information and development of a plan for capturing and monitoring performance of information assets. Secondly to ensure the core IT technologies and business applications put in place over the past two years are embedded and used effectively. Thirdly to adapt and improve IT service performance to meet the demands of our 43 sites across London. Strategy in the use by employees of their own technology, use of mobiles and how social networking is impacting operations, customer experiences or the organisation: Social networking to provide and receive feedback from our stakeholders across London. Staff can access some corporate applications on their own devices and via Citrix at home to allow home-working. Strategy for dealing with shadow IT and BYOD including influence and engagement with executives, to place the right controls around employee choice: In general shadow IT is minimal as most of our core applications meet our needs and IT generally has good engagement across the business but we can do more. There is the usual exception of “Excel systems” but these are generally short-lived to meet short-term needs. Technologies being considered to enable transformation:To increase flexibility and scalability we have virtualised the desktop and server environments and are developing an internal SaaS model to expose internal “apps” to iPad or other tablet or smartphone devices. Transformational inspiration sources:Many sources, CIO forums, conferences vendors, the media, ideas/problems highlighted by our users – we have a very high level of expertise across our organisation which is challenging our industry in the way we use technology. Key in all of this is the reliability and consistency of information (data) – single source of truth, integration and interoperability.