Using tech to evolve
There’s no looking back now for bus operators as consumers continue to embrace the future in trasport,
T ransportme has been in operation for more than three years now. And only for the last couple of years have we been actively expanding our own business footprint around Australia and New Zealand.
What we have found recently is very interesting, and inspired me to use it for the subject of this column.
Operators around Australia are now using Transportme as a ‘value-add’ feature for when tendering for private school contracts. Basically, when the operator puts in their tender bid, they give the school the opportunity to use Transportme to use in their services – allowing for smartcards and real-time GPS tracking of their eet. This, in turn, allows the school to say to their current customers (school children/parents) and potential customers, ‘Hey – our school has a system that lets you track your bus to within seven seconds of its location for free’. This in turn can increase their school’s enrolments.
And more often, this is one of the factors that can tip the tender bid their way for a bus operator. This is obviously a big tick of approval and commendation for Transportme, but what it highlights is the importance that we must now place on technology when planning on expanding our businesses.
As operators are fully aware, it can be a dog- eat- dog world when tendering for contracts or submitting charter bids. Every little bit of advantage is important – or ensuring you can offer the same as your competitors is just as vital.
Technology is one advantage that we must not forget about. Offering little add-ons such as USB ports in buses, free WiFi, Facebook updates and more, might just be the advantage to help your business keep expanding.
Using technology as a ‘value-add’ will become even more important in the future as your customers’ expectations evolve. Ten years ago, giving your private school (and their parents/children) the ability to track their bus was not so much of an issue.
However, thanks now to advancements in technology, this will soon become an expectation. And this is the exact reason operators turn to Transportme – so they can use technology to expand their business.
The focus on large private school contracts for both charter work and also for school student conveyance is a massive chunk of a bus operator’s business.
Imagine if you were a school dean or principal and you were given two different business tender proposals. Company A and Company B come in at roughly the same price.
The buses being used are very similar. They can offer the same service frequency and delivery. However, Company B has an extra proposal point. Parents can track their buses in real time, and the children can also be given a smartcard for tapping on and off, giving information on their travel patterns. This little extra add on has just tipped the tender bid to Company B. This is one possible example of using technology when tendering.
The next difference between another two companies might be video screens in headrests, or it could be free WiFi in all their buses. Whatever the difference is, you can rest assured that it gives the other company the extra edge needed.
No longer can operators stick their heads in the sand and refuse to acknowledge the impact that technology will have on their businesses. It is happening right now and will only increase in importance over the next decade and well into the future.
What is important is how operators react to it, and how quickly they can adapt. If they are quick to change and accept technology, they have an opportunity to grow. If they sit back and watch the world expand, their business might not do the same.
For those wanting to keep up with tech and their competitors, get in touch with us – more than happy to help!
“As operators are fully aware, it can be a dog-eat-dog world when tendering for contracts”