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Determining Priorities for Good Customer Service. Int’l Assc. of Transportation Regulators September 2005. What To Prioritize?. Clean new vehicles Courteous drivers Driver geographic knowledge Telephone response times Street hail/taxi stand availability …. and on. Key Considerations.

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determining priorities for good customer service

Determining Priorities for Good Customer Service

Int’l Assc. of Transportation Regulators

September 2005

what to prioritize
What To Prioritize?
  • Clean new vehicles
  • Courteous drivers
  • Driver geographic knowledge
  • Telephone response times
  • Street hail/taxi stand availability
  • …. and on
key considerations
Key Considerations
  • Axiomatic:
    • Safety
    • Accountability
key considerations1
Key Considerations
  • Priorities will depend on current service quality
  • Also depend on markets being served
      • Downtown stand/hail markets
      • Airport on-demand trips
      • Neighborhood telephone calls
  • But an answerable question!
research methodologies
Research Methodologies
  • Surveys (quantitative methods)
  • Focus groups (qualitative methods)
  • Customer research not the only tool
    • Observational data
    • Company computerized dispatch records
    • Complaints
    • Constituency groups
survey goals
Survey Goals
  • Objectively quantify customer attitudes
  • Identify strengths and weaknesses
  • Put data in context of everything else we know
  • Help tell the story
survey methods
Survey Methods
  • Sample of users
  • Mostly closed-end questions
  • Quantify responses
survey methods1
Survey Methods
  • Telephone
      • Residents
      • Can use customer lists
  • Intercept
      • Short in-person interviews
  • Mail and Email/web-based
      • Need lists
other topics anaheim surveys
Credit cards

29% of residents say important to be able to use credit cards to pay the fare

42% of visitors say credit cards important

Other Topics (Anaheim surveys)
other topics anaheim surveys1
Assistance with packages

14% of residents needed assistance

Driver assisted 68% of those needing assistance

Other Topics (Anaheim surveys)
other topics anaheim surveys2
Other Topics (Anaheim surveys)
  • Filing complaints
    • 32% of residents have thought of making complaint
    • 55% would know where to call -- nearly all would call cab company
other topics anaheim surveys3
Other Topics (Anaheim surveys)
  • Taxi usage
    • 6.6 taxi trips per month (residents)
    • Main trip purposes:
      • Shopping
      • Recreational/social activity
      • Commuting
      • Personal business/medical
    • 2.5 taxi trips during their stay (visitors)
other topics anaheim surveys4
Other Topics (Anaheim surveys)
  • Other
    • 27% had personal car available last time used a cab
    • 20% driver offered cell phone number
    • Average age of residents: 37
    • 7% age 60 or over
conclusion surveys

Highly useful to evaluating service needs

Provides objective information that carries weight

Not necessarily expensive

Setting priorities:

Pattern that service response times are significant concern

Potential to grow ridership

Conclusion: Surveys
focus groups
Focus groups
  • Goals
    • Rich detail
    • Not quantifiable
  • Methodology
    • 8-12 taxi users or potential users
    • 11/2 - 2 hour moderated discussion
    • Cover range of customer segments
nyc focus groups
NYC Focus Groups
  • Technology enhancements
  • Understand reactions and requirements
    • Drivers
    • Passengers
  • What are keys to passenger and driver acceptance?
  • 6 driver groups, segmented by shift lessees, weekly lessees, owner-drivers
  • 4 customer groups
  • Discussion aided by one-page questionnaires
  • Concept-level discussion
passenger reaction
Passenger Reaction
  • Context of cab-riding
    • “Time out”
    • Want to be treated as a customer
    • Unease with driver
passenger reaction1
Passenger Reaction
  • Credit and debit cards
    • Noncash payment methods highly valued
    • Speed and reliability of transaction essential
    • High concern with security
    • Surcharges viewed as unfair, unreasonable
    • Maintain control of transaction
passenger reaction2
Passenger information monitors

Acceptance highly dependent on PIM capabilities, advertising and passenger control

Map is primary selling point

Advertising should provide value to customer

Customers want choice and control

Passenger Reaction
driver reaction
Context of driving a cab

Primary concern is making money

Approach enhancements skeptically

Postive about customer enhancements

Want professionalism and skills recognized

Driver Reaction
driver reaction1
Credit and debit cards

Overall quite positive provided financial impacts are mitigated

Not expecting higher tips/more riders

Driver Reaction
driver reaction2
Passenger information monitors

Neutral or positive if concerns addressed



Annoyance to passengers

Summonses for nonworking devices

Driver Reaction
driver reaction3
Text messaging

Very positive - see direct benefits

Driver Reaction
driver reaction4
Vehicle tracking and electronic trip sheets

Mixed reaction

Trip sheets lack full functionality of paper trip sheets

Some owner-drivers express privacy concerns

Driver Reaction
conclusions to nyc project
Great potential for improving passenger and driver experience

“Devil is in the details”

Passengers: Speed, ease of use, control

Drivers: Cost and revenue implications

Conclusions to NYC Project
  • Surveys and focus groups provide highly valuable information
  • Forms key part of picture to help set priorities