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The 20th birthday of TAP’s Internet

In 2017, imagining working at TAP without internet can be very difficult. Nowadays, e-mail is an essential tool on the daily basis at work for most of us. Thousands of people communicate daily by e-mail, inside and outside TAP’s campus, sending messages, documents, presentations, planning. To those who work outside campus, as it is for the crew, the digital mobile platforms are really important, to manage work and to contact family and friends, which is fundamental to those who work away from home for so much time. The utilization of apps, TAP’s website and social media is a reality today and a bigger and bigger bet for the Company.

20 years ago, none of this was happening. The World Wide Web was invented on 1992, the first Internet commercial operator in Portugal starts the operation in 1995. TAP, as it usually is, positions itself in the vanguard of this new reality. The route for the creation of the Internet began almost immediately, being concluded in 1997, two decades ago, almost in the XXI century. José Manuel Taborda, from IT, already worked in the Company back then, and was one of the responsible team members for the implementation of this challenging project – an experience that he shares in writing on the document available here.

“The first question made was in the project scope. On one side, there was the need to attend to the growing access to WWW and e-mail, requested for TAP Employees; but, on the other, there as the need to provide services to our Clients, the passengers”.

After a path that took a while – between the acquisition of equipment, network installation, access configuration, commercial domains registration, among others – the first site of the Company was online, for the passengers and for the first internal users to start accessing to web and a personal e-mail.

TAP proceed, back then, to the registration of several internet domains (for example, tapairportugal.com or tap.pt), strategic decisions that, after two decades, revealed to be useful to one of the biggest actives of the Company: its brand. “The pioneering of the implemented solutions projected TAP also internationally, presenting solutions as “Leilão Virtual” (Virtual Auction), that came to substitute the Internet Booking Engine (IBE), a trivial solution today in any airline company”, affirms José Taborda.

 

For those who work at TAP for not so long ago, this reality will be hard to imagine. The launching of the new digital ecosystem of the Company, on April of this year, will certainly be a more present memory. The new FlyTAP is available on several digital platforms, adopting a new reservation system, simpler and more intuitive for the Clients, that can now search on an interactive map of destinies and dream about the next trips.

The contact with social media will also be a part of the daily basis of all Employees and Clients – Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn – where the Company as a strong presence and an assiduous participation.

 

20 years ago, things were different. The experience of traveling and buying the tickets were also different. Today, it isn’t so common to go to a costumer’s service desk or to a store of direct sales of an airline company. Travel agencies online grow up every single day and the Companies’ websites have a bigger and bigger role on giving information to the Clients and selling tickets. For example, according to the last data – relating to the month of October – about the revenue, FlyTAP today has about 24% of the Company’s total revenue, which represents about 26% of the tickets sold.

Regarding to the path that has been made by TAP and the IT area in these years, and having in mind the technology evolutions witnessed every day around the world, José Taborda says: “We’re continuing to want to be a part of these evolutions, but we also like to celebrate the path that brought us here, in a constant journey. We celebrate today this past two decades as a part of the 72 years of a Company that continues to grow and reinvent itself”.

 

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