2018 The Putting Passengers First Award

Putting Passengers First sponsored by Coach & Bus 2019

Winner, Gold Award, Make My Mainline – The Burnley Bus Company

The Burnley Bus Company describes Make My Mainline is a masterclass in customer research and product development that makes buses better for customers. Never has the company undertaken a research project which has gone into such depth to explore what its customers want, and to develop a product tailored to their every need reaching out to the local market so openly. Mainline has changed the vehicles, branding, customer delivery and style of operations of buses in Burnley to meet the needs of the local community.

Winner, Silver Award, Hello London – TfL and Steps Drama Learning Development

The bus industry in the UK has never seen a training course so ambitious in its scale, in its aims or in the means of its delivery as Transport for London’s ground breaking “Hello London”. All London bus drivers, regardless of their experience, participated in a two-day customer experience course. It took two years (to March 2018) for 25,000 drivers, garage supervisors, support staff and TfL frontline staff to complete it. The course’s aim was to ensure all bus drivers felt committed, able and supported to provide excellent customer service, to encourage those who already did, and to persuade the rest, and so bring about a sustained improvement in the customer experience. To maximise its impact, the training was delivered with the use of drama, with TfL and all the London bus operators working with Steps Drama (new to the bus industry) to an audience unaccustomed to innovation in training. It demonstrated the power of peer-to-peer learning and also used interactive voting technology to further engage attendees with the course and its key messages. Since the course began, bus driver commendations have doubled.

Winner, Bronze Award, How do I catch a bus? – Stagecoach East Scotland

Uncertainty, confusion and a lack of clarity are some of the biggest barriers to attracting new passengers to bus travel. The rise of digital and instant re-assurance, transparency and services tailor-made to your personal preferences is on the rise, while bus travel is falling behind with a traditional mindset. Stagecoach East Scotland, in partnership with Deloitte Digital, focussed on addressing this challenge for six months. Customers and staff were engaged in a series of interviews, sessions and live experiments were undertaken to establish how to catch a bus today, and how it might make it easier for customers who expect and need more from their bus service, today and tomorrow.

Finalist, Re-building confidence in using the bus – East Coast Buses

Formed in August 2016, East Coast Buses stepped-in to take over First Group’s East Lothian operation. It is now established as the principal operator of bus services in the county, linking East Lothian with Edinburgh and Midlothian. With a vision to provide frequent, reliable, safe and socially inclusive transport for local residents and visitors alike, East Coast Buses has worked hard to re-build confidence in using the bus since commencing operation.