Passenger Voice May 2015: Driving improvements for bus passengers
30 April 2015
Bus Passenger Survey (BPS) results are used as a tool by operators and authorities to identify key priorities for improvement. Following the publication of the BPS we work with them to help improve services.
Reading Buses’ results show the importance of punctuality for passenger satisfaction. The company was aware that bus punctuality had dipped during the survey period, in part because of disruption caused by road works in the town centre, and this was reflected in the fall in satisfaction with bus punctuality from 85 to 74 per cent.
While overall satisfaction had also fallen, to 89 per cent, the results did show encouraging improvement in passenger satisfaction with value for money and driver attitude and helpfulness. Reading Buses created an action plan for improvement, demonstrating the value of the BPS. We will be able to see if this plan has been successful when we survey bus passengers again later in the year.
Staffordshire County Council
Staffordshire County Council (SCC) was keen to take part this year and compare against previous results from 2011. Overall satisfaction is similar (up two percentage points), but the key headline is that value for money has shot up for young people.
SCC introduced new tickets for 16 to 19 year olds in 2011 and saw satisfaction increase from 47 per cent in 2011 to 63 per cent this time. In addition, despite a very small budget for bus stops, work to maintain and provide information at stops made a difference – satisfaction with bus stops overall is up by 10 per cent.
First Aberdeen’s newly-appointed managing director, David Phillips, told us how he values the BPS. He said it is a good starting point and confirmation of issues that required to be tackled, particularly in relation to value for money (low satisfaction) and to look at ways of improving driver training in relation to improving engagement with passengers.
BPS enables those involved to prioritise improvements that can lead to increased passenger satisfaction. We will be following up with targeted operators and local authorities to specifically discuss their action plans based on the BPS and see how these are progressing.