This is the award which benchmarks the performance of bus garages in London, and rewards the best with a cash prize to be used on facilities to benefit the team which delivers the best service on a day-to-day basis.
The 2015 Results
Winner, Gold Award
Alperton - Metroline West
Metroline West's Alperton Garage works as a team, from cleaners to drivers, supervisors and managers. All have combined efforts to maximise the performance of the garage and develop, maintain and improve a system that benefits the staff, company but most importantly the customers. The KPIs were particularly impressive - especially the low lost mileage figure. A Wall of Fame, on show at the garage, was introduced as a way of recognising excellent staff and motivating others to improve their customer service. Senior drivers have been promoting a passenger comfort scheme using the 'Drive Green' telematics system. Engagement with local schools via TfL's Youth Ambassadors has helped improve both the behaviour of school children and the attitude of drivers towards them. With some pupils also undertaking work experience at the garage the overall effect has been to achieve a noticeable reduction in vandalism and graffiti. By prioritising driver attitude and performance through a customer interaction programme Alperton has moved up the Mystery Traveller Survey results table into the top 10 of London bus garages.
The judges felt that all this effort, with such positive results, deserved the Gold award.
Winner, Silver Award
Holloway - Metroline
Holloway Garage is 108 years old but the Metroline operated depot's KPIs are very good and, with a variety of vehicle types including the New Routemaster, route performance has been improved by applying careful attention to engineering procedures. The emphasis is on 'first time fix' for defects, and by engaging with drivers to get more detailed defect reports, repeat faults have been minimised. Time and effort spent on staff welfare and family friendly rotas have helped to improve attendance and route forums. Mystery Traveller reports have been improved by seeing each driver to discuss in detail any areas of concern with the training department then ensuring an improvement in customer interaction and professionalism. To raise driving standards Holloway has invested in Drive Assist, a telematics system monitor driving performance, and VIGIL training using a bus fitted with cameras internally and externally to record driving standards. This allows footage to be played back to the driver to highlight driving performance whether bad or good. Staff praise days are held for exceptional performers who can otherwise be overlooked and every effort is made for good relations with local residents in Holloway's densely populated area.
Winner, Bronze Award
Stamford Brook - RATP Dev London
Colleagues at RATP Dev London's Stamford Brook are immensely proud of their garage and are focused on making it number one in London. All staff have been made aware of how important they are to the business and their role in the æbigger pictureÆ. Drivers know that customers have a choice in how they travel so they do their best to make the journey a pleasant one. On the practical side, drivers are aware that it is crucial to maintain good headways and they have a great working relationship with controllers. Customer service is continually reinforced during and after training. Accident prevention is reinforced through regular briefings about æhot spotsÆ on the road. The garage does not have the traditional divide between operations and engineering and team members work well with controllers to minimise lost mileage. The approach to customer service took a leap forward with the introduction of customer assistants and Stamford Brook played an active role in the development of the customer service apprenticeship scheme. The garage regularly holds events where people in the local community can visit the garage and talk to managers, remembering that they serve the local community and its voice is important û after all, this is their bus service. Well done team!
Twickenham - Abellio London
Twickenham Garage is committed to providing a fun, engaging and safe place to work; from campaigns to raise driver awareness about safe driving techniques and disability awareness, through to carol concerts and rewarding drivers with chocolate coins. An Employee of the Month award is presented, rewarding an outstanding employee for a high number of Customer Commendations or going above and beyond expectations. Every driver who has achieved excellent result for a Driver Quality Monitoring assessment or a high score on a Mystery Traveller Survey assessment has their photograph put on the ôWall of Fameö and receives a ú10 voucher for excellent driving. Every driver is asked to welcome customers onto the bus. Since implementing a safe driving campaign the number of driver avoidable collisions has fallen noticeably and a driver performance board in the garage's brand new front area indicates the key areas in which staff are excelling across the board, for example the attendance record is high, but noting specific areas for improvement such as reducing lost mileage due to driver error.
Bromley - Stagecoach London
Being a good neighbour, being an active part of the local community and providing the bus services within it, gives Stagecoaxch London's Bromley team a sense of responsibility to do their best to ensure they are at the top of their game, day in, day out. With an average length of service within the garage of 10 years, and three employees having over 40 years service, drivers and engineers clearly enjoy working here. At the recent company Bus Driver of the Year event, of the 30 drivers eligible for entry, seven were from Bromley. Having a stable workforce has massive advantages when looking to influence performance. Much effort has been put into raising the standards of both driver performance and vehicle presentation. Almost all drivers at Bromley have the BTEC qualification and a Greenroad drive quality performance score of 14, a 26% improvement over last year and over the past year Bromley has regularly been in the top 10% of performing garages in London. Being in the heart of the community the team work hard to be good neighbours, engaging in and have a positive influence on local events as well as promoting engineering apprenticeships at local schools and colleges.
Who could be nominated?
This award was open to garages that operate buses on contract to London Bus Services Ltd. Performance and monitoring data was used by TfL London Buses to compile a shortlist of garages reaching high levels of recorded performance, which included:
- Driver Quality Monitoring data
- Wheelchair ramp operational audit data
- Customer Satisfaction Survey and Mystery Traveller Survey results
- Lost Mileage
- Quality of Service Indicators
- Engineering standards
- Levels of public comments.
Each short listed garage was then challenged to submit its own assessment of its achievements, emphasising its impact on passenger service, staff well-being and the communities served by reference to specified issues.