Employee Spotlight – Jon Anton, Consulting Director

In this month’s employee spotlight we sit down with Consulting Director, Jon Anton who has worked for EPM for 13 years; maximising operators’ concessionary fares reimbursement, as well as analysing the performance of networks and identifying areas for improvement.

Name three words you would use to describe your role

Varied, thought-provoking, challenging.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

I would have to say the variety. Concessionary fares consultancy has a mix of desk based analysis, client engagement and negotiations with third parties, whether that’s Local Transport Authorities or their consultants. Then there’s the operational audit work, it does share some similarities to the consultancy work but for the most part requires a completely different mind-set.

What is your biggest achievement to date?

Personally, securing my ACCA Practising Certificate. It took some time to achieve it, but without it I wouldn’t be in the role I am today.

Professionally, it was demonstrating the value EPM could offer to one of the large bus operators in the UK in respect of their concessionary fares reimbursement. Following some proof of concepts that yielded double-digit percentage increases in reimbursement, we secured a contract to review reimbursement for the whole group – and have continued to do so since.

Are you working on any interesting projects at the moment?

One of the most interesting is an internal project to migrate our accounting to a new solution. We kicked off with EPM at the end of 2020 and then more recently we have brought across Omnibus into the same solution. There was a steep learning curve for me, however we’re already starting to see the benefits of the new solution and there’s still more to come.

What’s your favourite thing to do on the weekends?

Going for a long walk across the fields with my dogs, a whippet and a greyhound. They would much rather tear around the garden than walk though!

If you could get a new skill in 10 minutes, what would it be?

To be able to speak another language; maybe Spanish, German or French.

What’s an interesting fact about you?

Despite my answer to the previous question, at the age of 4 I was able to converse in French. My dad was on a work exchange placement in Montreal, I went to a French-speaking pre-school whilst we were there. Sadly I didn’t hold on to that skill, nor did it come back to me in my mid-teens when I was studying French GCSE!

Do you have a favourite film?
Home Alone. It’s far from the best film ever made, but it’s one that I can’t help but watch at least once a year!

What music are you listening to at the moment?

I’ve been listening to lots from the ‘90s and ‘00s recently – bands like Oasis, Stereophonics & Foo Fighters.

What three items would you take with you to a deserted island?

Can I have items that will help me get back to civilisation, after a short break of course? No? Then a book, probably something by Bill Bryson, a large bottle of whisky and some sun cream!

How do you think the bus industry will change in the next 10 years?

I’ll echo the thoughts of my colleagues; integrated transport networks will be prevalent across the country. Multi-operator ticketing will play a key part in this, so we’ll see these schemes becoming increasingly prominent.

What’s the best advice you can give to someone who’s just started their career?

Take every opportunity that presents itself to broaden your skills and experience. Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions – you’re not expected to know everything!

Read last month’s Employee Spotlight with Software Director, Nick Brookes.

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