Eurostar Case Study

Page 1: Introduction

Eurostar is the high-speed rail service directly linking the UK to France and Belgium via the Channel Tunnel. It started operating in 1994, providing city centre to city centre services. The fastest London-Paris Eurostar journey time is just 2 hours 15 minutes. In 2007 the second section of the new UK high-speed rail line was completed. St Pancras International became the new Eurostar home and...
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Page 2: Business continuity

Eurostar exists solely for its customers. The culture of putting the customer first is embedded into everything it does. Therefore, Eurostar is very aware of the need to provide a safe, reliable, convenient and comfortable service. In order to ensure that this is the case, the company has established a business and service continuity department. The department ‘sets the pace’ and...
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[audio= continuity]

Page 3: Benefits of business continuity

Eurostar’s emphasis on proactive management is highly important to the company’s ongoing growth. By continually identifying present risks and assessing possible future risks, the company has the ability to avoid problems as much as realistically possible. For example, passenger demand has risen by 4% over the first half of 2011 and Eurostar is already in the process of a major...
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Page 4: Calculating risk

Each Eurostar department is asked key questions so that a relevant set of risks can be established. Examples of the risks considered range from losing the main offices due to fire (long-term) or a bomb scare (short-term) to a train derailment, a major financial catastrophe or the loss of one or more of the vital computer systems. Measuring risk The risk matrix that has been developed shows the...
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[audio= risk]

Page 5: Business continuity – Eurostar implementation

The company has organised itself so that it has a business continuity department that will lead the process and set the scene. It is implementing a recognised business continuity model.However, one critical and distinctly important point is that responsibility for delivery is very firmly ‘in the line’ (the responsibility of departmental line managers). Each department has...
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[audio= continuity – Eurostar implementation]

Page 6: Conclusion

Eurostar is demonstrating how seriously it is taking the whole question of business and service continuity. This is already paying dividends in raising the profile of the process to everyone in the company. It is generally acknowledged that Eurostar is more confident in its approach to its day-to-day business because the company has considered carefully what could go wrong and how to put it...
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Eurostar Case Study

“NetCourier made a positive impact on our sales and customer relations.”

David Bridges, Management Team


Eurostar International Limited – The high speed rail service that links the UK with various destinations across the European mainland. Their consistently high levels of punctuality, speed, convenience and ease of border crossing means that Eurostar are now recognised as one of the fastest and most reliable national and international courier services available. Evidence of their on-going success comes from achievements including the Train Operator of the Year Award, the HSBC Rail Award and the Best Train Company Award from The Guardian and Observer.


The Euro Despatch Centre (Eurostar’s purpose built handling Centre), frustrated by their previ- ous supplier, decided to replace their existing system with Metafour’s courier software. Eurostar required a system with varied and high functionality based upon their nu- merous service options and reservation facilities. More specifically, a system package was required with the following functionality:

  • The ability to comprehensively organise consign- ment transportation from St. Pancras Internation- al in London to Paris and Brussels. Consignments required point to point tracking.
  • To manage group baggage check in, collection and transportation from St. Pancras to various customer destinations across Europe.
  • To offer customers the opportunity to reserve and transport bicycles from destination to destination. With a rising trend in the number of inner city cy- clists throughout Eurostar’s destinations, the company required a system that would allow cus- tomers to pre-book the necessary storage re- quired to transfer their bicycles.
  • With an ever increasing number of customers us- ing Eurostar to cross the channel it stands to rea- son that the amount of lost property on their ser- vices increased. Eurostar required a means of organising any recovered property; record inquir- ies from customers; cross reference inquiries with logged items; and a means of returning items to their rightful owners.
  • An interface through which select clients can book Eurostar international courier services online.
  • Promote fluidity and continuity of information between staff at all levels.

Metafour Deployed

  • Consignments can be booked either via a web-based interface using pre-populated data or via telephone depending upon the preference of the customer. Once on-board the progress of the consignment is tracked until its arrival at the desired destination and the job is logged as complete.
  • Groups and individuals with excess baggage are able to check in baggage en-masse using Metafour’s courier software. The system al- lows customers to register their luggage at one terminal and collect it within 24 hours at their destination.
  • A specific Lost Property module has been developed that allows Eurostar to log and manage the following: customer inquiries, matched items, found items, abandoned items, posted and couriered items, as well as a searchable record of all previous jobs.
  • Customers who wish to travel with bicycles can now reserve a space on the same train they are travelling on.
  • Information can be accessed by all necessary users throughout the company, increasing both efficiency and the reliabil-ity of all aspects of jobs management.
  • Functionality including emailing and invoice management, processing sales and cost tariffs, tracking and retrieving anynecessary POD information is available
  • NetCourier’s a powerful search facility which allows Eurostar to review any job that they have processed throughout any of the modules in the courier system.
  • NetCourier is delivered with full training. Metafour offer support, maintenance and development as a service. The Lost Property module was developed as bespoke international courier software.


Eurostar are unique in the services they offer. The increased functionality and fluidity that Metafour’s international courier software has added to Eurostar has helped to further secure the niche market role that they have monopolised. Combined with NetCourier, Eurostar has bolstered their unique selling point and further secured their position against any emerging competition.

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