Deutsche Bahn: High speed into the cloud

ISG supports Deutsche Bahn AG with up-to-date tender and contract models for commissioning public cloud services compliant with European Union (E.U.) procurement law.


The German railway company Deutsche Bahn set the strategic goal of relocating as much of its IT infrastructure as possible to the public cloud. The speed at which Deutsche Bahn is expanding and converting its IT systems, including the digitization of its sales channels, is increasing significantly. The company is leveraging the cloud as a technical integration platform for its numerous internal railway applications and the applications of its external business partners, such as transport associations.

Deutsche Bahn wanted a cloud service provider ecosystem to change its production model, preferably without hybrid grey areas that would make it dependent on a single provider. In the necessary selection and award process, the group was faced with two main tasks: meet the legal tender requirements of the E.U. without scaring off the relevant hyperscalers and ensure the offers submitted were comparable without neutralizing the specifics of the individual providers.

Imagining IT Differently
Imagining IT Differently

First, Deutsche Bahn, with the support of ISG, carried out an assessment and used the results to develop a detailed sourcing and technology map. ISG used our unique sourcing solution, FutureSource™, and the contract model RFXOne©. These methodologies introduce E.U.-compliant contract templates into the process at an early stage and rely on detailed and comprehensive communication with the suppliers from the outset, even before the first offer is submitted. As a result, the offers Deusche Bahn received reflected the required services more clearly and were more comparable with each other. Ultimately, the company was confident in the solutions and performance.

ISG preceded the public tender with a survey of the supplier market, supported by ISG Research. ISG's research and analyst division has been conducting regular supplier comparisons for IT products and services in numerous markets worldwide for over 15 years. The tender included functional specifications, contractual regulations and test cases with use cases for the providers as well as a financial model.

Future Made Possible

Deutsche Bahn reaped the following benefits:

  • The selection of the new public cloud provider – from the invitation to tender to the award of the contract – took just six months and complied with all E.U. public procurement requirements.
  • The ISG FutureSource™ sourcing solution made it possible to perform a robust comparison of providers while simultaneously complying with the requirements of an E.U. award of contract.
  • Thanks to early communication and collaboration with the providers, the transition phase after the conclusion of the contract was short, allowing the provider to begin work immediately.
  • The efficient and focused award process created one of the cornerstones for an extremely rapid migration of Deutsche Bahn’s railway systems to the public cloud.
  • ISG FutureSource™ created double-digit percentage cost reduction potential for IT services and reduced operational risks.
  • The process model was established as a best practice for many E.U. contracting procedures at Deutsche Bahn.