Inside Jetstar's secretive data analytics project

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Inside Jetstar's secretive data analytics project

Airline scales up “significant transformational project”.

Jetstar has revealed plans to expand a data science capability across all parts of its operations to “drive the next wave of growth and innovation” at the airline.

The company is presently building a team of permanent and contract resources in Melbourne to standardise the way it deals with data across the business, scope new analytics infrastructure, and to run the major project over the next two years.

A Jetstar spokesperson did not respond to requests for comment.

However, the airline is not shying away from the importance it is placing on its 'Project Data sMart'.

“This is a significant transformational project delivering a new information management infrastructure and analytics capability,” it said.

The project is understood to fall under the remit of Jetstar’s head of pricing and revenue management Cedric Cornelis.

According to Cornelis’ LinkedIn profile, he set up an analytics unit for the airline’s “commercial” function last year and took on a new role in February this year to extend it across the business.

The analytics unit will see the “deployment of data science to identify, leverage and apply insights from all internal and external data,” according to his LinkedIn profile.

Jetstar has indicated that business users will be presented with “self-service toolsets” to interrogate the airline’s data.

The airline will rely in part on “super users” to seed the toolsets in each business unit; they will act as a key vehicle to “drive uptake within their business function, and form part of an extended support model for members of their teams".

As is the case with other data science projects currently underway, Jetstar is also taking the opportunity to set data quality standards across the business.

It is in the process of employing a data quality lead to “develop and implement a data management strategy for the project that ensures consistent, accurate, timely, fit-for-purpose information is available across Jetstar”.

The lead is also responsible for “determining the appropriate level of investment in data quality and governance beyond the Data sMart project”, and for ensuring data governance processes comply with those of its parent, Qantas.

Jetstar’s investment in information management represents a new front in the company’s significant focus on transforming the value it gets from IT.

The airline has a new chief information officer, Claudine Ogilvie, beginning this month following a recent IT restructure.

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