These are challenging times for the public transportation industry. Customers have become more demanding and discriminating in recent years, increasingly expecting a variety of travel options as well as a better travel experience in general. At the same time, fuel costs are rising and subsidies are falling—a combination that makes for a tough business environment.
What steps are transport providers taking to address these challenges and improve their service as well as their financial picture? To shed light on the characteristics of high performance in public transportation, Accenture investigated the capabilities and strategies of representative cities on four continents.
In part, the answer for providers is to continue to drive better performance in traditional areas: improving punctuality and safety, raising the overall quality of service, increasing capacity and keeping costs under control. Accenture research found, however, that high performers in public transportation are looking to spread their investments between those basic operational capabilities and newer strategies focused on goals such as improving customer centricity, increasing value for money and driving more sustainable development.
These newer strategies can be categorized into three imperatives: maximize demand for services; optimize capacity; and rethink business models to improve collaboration and revenue generation through interaction across the broader transportation ecosystem.