The Things Your Transit Scheduling Software Should Be Doing Already

Let’s face it—transit scheduling is an incredibly complex and intricate venture. While drivers have a physical burden in driving quickly and safely while following a host of procedures and regulations, while at the same time being responsible for customer service, dispatchers have their own concerns. No matter how rigorous their planning and reliable their drivers, to err is human, and humans will be human. We live in a modern age, with sophisticated tools and synergistic methods to make your life easier. Reliable, sophisticated, modern… are these terms you would use to describe your transit scheduling software? If your software is a slog, maybe it’s time to rethink what it could be doing for you, saving you time, money, and hassle in the process. Let’s take a journey through a normal day, made unimaginably simpler with fully-featured transit scheduling software from Reveal.

Let’s start with the basics. First thing in the morning, your transit scheduling software fetches the orders and manifests from your clients, then automatically gets to work parsing it. Using advanced machine learning techniques, your software plots each pick-up and drop-off location for the day, along with passengers’ special needs such as wheelchair access or company restrictions. Depending on the size and capacity of your fleet, your software deduces the routes for each vehicle, with the goal of the algorithm being to minimize the total number of miles your drivers have to travel while maximizing the profit per mile. Unlike more rudimentary software or heaven forbid, Google Maps, your software can plan around the unique limitations of transit by truck or bus, including height and weight limitations, traffic patterns, loading efficiency, and capacity.

But this is real life, and not everything is perfect and predictable. Your passengers are people too, and a simple slip of the mind can cost your company precious minutes when those passengers no-show or cancel without notice. This issue exists in nearly every service industry, from transit, to medicine, to hotels and restaurants. A person schedules transportation through your client then forgets to cancel or neglects to notify your company without sufficient advanced warning, then suddenly you’re put-out for gas, time, and efficiency. These incidents can never be completely eliminated, but they can be curtailed with a simple solution. When one of your passengers needs to cancel, they can contact you directly through the web or your software’s mobile application. This one-button cancel functionality slices through the biggest reasons why passengers fail to notify you—effort and confrontation. Despite what you may have come to believe through your line of work, people hate to waste other people’s time and will typically avoid direct notification of cancellation for any number of rationales. But even more than confrontational avoidance, how much effort would you expect the average person to put in when attempting to figure out how to cancel? Are they going to search for your website, or maybe call your driver? What if they don’t own a computer, or don’t have your number? All ridesharing apps have one-button cancellation for this very reason, and your software has this feature built right in. In addition to your passengers having this functionality, your drivers do, as well. With their devices, they can immediately report no-shows or in-person cancellations, with no phone calls to headquarters necessary.

Speaking of making your drivers’ jobs easier, let’s consider their point of view. At the start of their shift, your drivers receive all the route information they’ll need on their smartphone or tablet. As we touched on earlier, your software has already planned the optimal route and notified the driver of any special needs that specific passengers might have. Once they drive the vehicle off the lot, their GPS automatically starts tracking their time and mileage in addition to their route and current location. Taking a break is another one-button feature, wherein the driver can stop at predetermined times or of their own accord, with navigation seamlessly resuming upon their return. But what about those pesky no-shows? Sure, there are fewer of them now that passengers can self-report, but what happens after that? Say your driver is only a few miles away from a stop and receives a cancellation, or perhaps you need to add another stop in the middle of the route. Your transit scheduling software has you completely covered. In the background, the algorithm works quickly to create a new route with the same requirements and rigor as the original. Your driver can verify the new route they’ll be taking and adjust their course accordingly. Maybe the next passenger they’ll be seeing requires a signature upon pickup or dropoff. Time to bust out the carbon triplicates? Not so fast. Your software has easy one-finger signing and billing built right in, verifying the correct person has been picked up or dropped off and was satisfied with their transport.

If this hypothetical is starting to sound more like a dream than your reality, you’re not alone. Many, many transportation companies suffer through incalculable inefficiency issues every single day, along all points of the chain. If you’ve found yourself among them, isn’t it time for a more elegant solution? Reveal Solutions’ transit scheduling software has all the cutting-edge features you’ve just read about and more. Contact Reveal now to end the madness and start making transportation simple and efficient again.

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