A partner-led strategy that is more than just semantics
6th Apr 2017
We recently held the first of our Innovation Days with transport operator partners. At these events we have multiple objectives; these include sharing best practice, knowledge transfer, reviewing the current roadmap and taking a broader view of industry trends and issues.
We see the innovation day as a key part of our partnership programme. At Passenger, our business approach is to work with partners rather than see ourselves in a more traditional customer/supplier relationship. This partner-led strategy is more than just semantics and it shapes our entire approach to engaging with the operator community. Of course, we want to find a way of doing business with you. But we also recognise that a collaborative approach, which is open about the challenges on both sides, can lead to the development of products and services that better meet the needs of operators and their customers. We believe the approach will contribute to our shared longer term vision of sustained growth in public transport patronage. A win/win for all parties.
How does this work in practice?
- It means firstly that we see customer engagement as an ongoing conversation and a two-way process. For example, we want to tell you about the benefits of our Passenger platform and the practical benefits that mobile technology will bring to your operation. But we also want to understand what your priorities are and how we can better meet those needs both now and for the future. We maintain this conversation post-deployment by providing a nominated account manager and conducting regular review meetings.
- Our Innovation Days bring transport operating staff and Passenger’s designers, developers and customer support teams together. These events provide a platform to meet with industry peers, transfer knowledge and learning, discuss the bigger picture with industry experts and shape product roadmap development.
- We increase our value to operator partners by not only being developers but recognising that we are part of a broader industry ecosystem. Passenger team is actively involved in initiatives like The 10% club, CPT, industry conferences (ALBUM, Euro Bus) and hack events (DfT Hack, Smarter Travel Live). In that way we try to ensure we contribute to and understand the broader challenges and opportunities of the public transport industry, with for example reference to the Bus Services Bill currently going through parliament.
We also believe we have an ongoing responsibility to continue to invest in cutting edge technology to provide additional insights and benefits to our operator partners. In the last 12 months alone this investment has included first to market payment methods (Apple Pay), fast track development of wearable applications (Apple Watch) and voice controlled applications (Amazon Echo).
Developing external partnerships with organisations like the Data Science Initiative at Bournemouth University enable us to explore further possibilities of the Passenger platform like crowdsensing and network matching.
We also maintain a watching brief on the developing technologies already beginning to revolutionise the future of transport by being active participants in events such as Midlands Intelligent Mobility and supporting the Transport Catapult’s IMCreate Connected & Autonomous Vehicle hackathon.
If you’re looking for a better way to work with emerging digital technologies please get in touch. We’d love you to join us at our next Innovation Day!