The deadline for Local Transport Authorities (LTAs) to complete Network Reviews for the Bus Recovery Grant and Local Transport Fund is fast approaching.
By 1st July 2022, LTAs will need to have submitted Network Reviews to the Department for Transport to demonstrate that they’re working with operators to plan for a sustainable network.
This will set expectations of service levels at the end of the recovery period, offering a plan of commercial and tendered networks once pandemic-related funding in England ceases on 4th October 2022.
Optimise data sharing processes
Grant funding will only be distributed if both LTAs and operators can prove that they have undertaken this work in partnership, which means data sharing processes should be implemented.
Historically LTAs have not had access to vast amounts of operator data but with the National Bus Strategy and BSIPs encouraging a more collaborative relationship, it’s clear that data sharing will be a key requirement from the government going forward.
Software can be used to streamline this sharing of data between operators and LTAs. In many cases, current processes are not synchronised and require time-consuming and error-prone manual data submissions. Data automation significantly reduces administration time and ensures a level of accuracy, which means users can spend more time understanding and analysing the figures.
Source baseline data for KPIs
In order to set and monitor KPIs, LTAs need access to baseline data. Due to the Covid pandemic, data from the past couple of years cannot be used as an accurate reference point, which means LTAs will need to look further back at historic data in order to draw comparisons. Established software solutions will have historic data embedded within the system and users can easily access the data from weeks, months, or years prior in order to build an accurate picture of progress.
LTAs are likely to focus on specific areas of the network to improve and being able to access systems that can compare recent results with historic data is key to analysing if the changes have made the desired impact.
Get clear insight into network performance
The Network Review guidance states that LTAs should use the data, scenarios and knowledge around risks and mitigations, and work with operators to forecast revenue on services, on a route-by-route basis, using the patronage recovery assumptions developed.
Software solutions can be implemented to identify how viable a route is, the types of tickets purchased, mileage per route and passenger numbers. There is also functionality for scenario modelling, to test for ‘what if’ scenarios and find the best way to service each route.
Analysis tools can also be used to give a complete picture of the network by collecting all the data into one system and offering breakdowns of individual areas. Users can view information such as patronage trends that are formulated into graphs and charts. This drill down capability allows intuitive interrogation of the data, investigating root causes of any issues identified, and enables users to set and monitor KPIs.
How EPM Group can help
With over 30 years’ experience in software and consultancy services, EPM Group has a comprehensive knowledge of the bus industry and works with four of the seven PTEs in the UK as well as a range of local authorities to streamline their organisational processes.
Our broad, fully integrated software range covers a multitude of functions from operations through to commercial and engineering. To book a free consultation to see how we can assist with your challenges and requirements, complete the online form or call 01527 556940.