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National Express Transit Blog

Importance of Transportation Management

Managing Transit Operations

Transit agencies are responsible for providing safe and reliable transportation, and because of this, proper transportation management is critical to the success of any transit agency. Good management improves service and lowers cost, which ensures transit is sustainable for cities and pleasing to passengers. Transit operations contractors can help transit agencies achieve the best service possible through optimized operations.

Why Proper Transportation Management Matters       

Given the importance of transportation in people's everyday lives, transit agencies are concerned about making sure the system works properly. Mass transportation offers billions of rides to Americans in numerous cities each year. This astounding volume of rides is not possible without sophisticated and expert transportation management. 

When the many elements of transit are working well, service is better. Quality service is key to a successful transportation system. Management improves service through planning, overseeing operations, and responding to problems in a timely manner. Efficient service leads to happier passengers who use transit more often, which in turn increases revenue. Good management also reduces costs, which is important for transit agencies.  

Fleet operations require a high level of management for a convenient, reliable, and predictable service.  Whether it is managing a large workforce, maximizing the efficiency of complex routes, or maintaining vehicles and infrastructure for transit and rail services, management through direct oversight and the use of technological advances can help to provide consistent high quality results.

Good Versus Bad Transportation Management

A working transit system must always be organized despite the many variables that affect transportation. Some challenges for transit agencies are not preventable, such as extreme weather events or a traffic accident. However, a good transportation management system creates and tests contingency plans and utilizes tools to adjust to various conditions that affect a transit vehicle. 

For example, a Transit Management System that includes the implementation of a computer-assisted dispatch system can alert and redirect bus drivers in the event of a traffic disruption. Additionally, a system that includes robust fleet management, including an asset management system, can ensure the timely maintenance of vehicles to improve overall safety and performance, as well as extend the useful life of vehicles and equipment. 

In the alternative, poor transportation management can create catastrophic results for transit agencies. Improper management leads to worsening safety and reliability. Passengers become unhappy with persistent problems such as late arrivals. As a result, the reputation of the service can suffer, more people abandon transit in favor of driving, and revenue can plummet. Without revenue, transit agencies have less resources available to fix the problems they are facing in transit management. 

How a Transit Operations Contractor Can Help

Public transit authorities commonly use resources from the private sector to improve the management of mass transportation. When a public transit agency partners with an experienced operations contractor, service improves. Contractors can provide central roles in transit operations by providing a range of services that includes everything from the upper level management of the system to the supervision, operation, and maintenance of vehicles, equipment, and call centers. Contractors offer valuable expertise and knowledge of national and international best practices at a reasonable cost.

Transit agencies have a great deal of flexibility in choosing how to use operations contractors. Some transit systems contract for the operation of their entire service on a turnkey basis, while others may only utilize contractors for a portion of the service, such as paratransit operations or maintenance services. Most contracts are able to provide a full suite of services, and are happy to work with you to ensure that your needs are met, at a cost that is reasonable and competitive.

Public transit agencies can offer more for their passengers by improving their operations management, and transit operations contractors have the experience that public transit agencies need in order to make this a reality.

Transit Operations Provider