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Transport for London: Cutting the cost of collecting fares by over £50 million

Over the past six years PA has supported TfL in delivering the Electra project, which in combination with other TfL initiatives has reduced the cost of providing fare collection across London’s buses, underground and rail network by 40% – from £123 million to £66 million – each year.

The Oyster system currently serves 10 million transactions per day and collects £3 billion annually. To encourage competition and drive down the cost of commercial proposals, it was essential for TfL to establish a level playing field between contract bidders and the incumbent supplier.

We helped TfL achieve this by:

  • providing ongoing technical due-diligence to help TfL and new bidders understand how their current system works
  • undertaking a major review of existing technical documentation and developing a set of procurement-ready functional specifications covering the entire revenue collection system
  • establishing secure data rooms with a bespoke content management portal that enables TfL to monitor and control access to their documentation and critical IP whilst also supporting bidders in navigating a hugely complex document landscape.

The success of the project was recognised in the 2015 Global Procurement Leaders Awards: TfL was Highly Commended in the public services category.

“It is great to see our effort at doing something creative and unusual with our ticketing services recognised this way and we thank PA for their help in delivering project Electra. Every penny of public money matters. The project shows how much can be achieved through careful thought about how we buy technology and services.”

TfL Director of Customer Experience Shashi Verma


Cutting the cost of collecting fares by over £50 million for @TfL. How @PA_Consulting helped #makethedifference

Contact the transport, travel and logistics team

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