Last week was a full on, I am unsure if I have fully recovered from the summer break yet. Fortunately, performance is great, which leaves room to spend time on other important things such as improving customer experience, improving the business and creating a better and more inclusive work environment. (I have experienced that thinking is a lot easier without a tie).
Can I please draw your attention to a special announcement - Laurie Richardson is celebrating 40 years in the railway industry! This is a phenomenal achievement, from starting as an Admin Cadet in Paeroa in 1979 to being a Planning Coordinator today. I have said many times that the railways rely on people like Laurie. People who understand the history, have seen it all before and offer experience, knowledge and stability to the business. Please join me in congratulating Laurie.
We are doing well on the customer experience front. Customer satisfaction seems to have stabilised, coming in with a strong 92.3% on the last survey. This is an achievement that many businesses would be very proud of. Our Net Promoter Score is still very positive (number of people who recommend train travel outweigh the number of people who advise against it, 25% by comparison), but gradually declining. This is probably because of over-crowding issues, which we hope to solve by the end of this year when we are expecting the first of 15 new EMUs. Customer feedback from the 10th mystery traveller cycle has shown a remarkable improvement from last year, resulting in more A grades than ever before. A strong indication that all of you, in particular Train Managers, are continuing to provide exceptional customer service.
Those who stay on top of the news will know that from 10 February AT is planning to change the fares. An increase of 1.9% will be imposed on all bus, ferry and train users. Only the ferry to Pine Harbour will see a 10 cent fare reduction. If you have a choice, I still think it is great value for money compared to taking the car. I am sure that over time, public transport will take an ever-increasing role in the mobility portfolio. Transdev is best suited to assist AT and offer solutions that are innovative and good value for money for the Auckland taxpayer.
Finally, I am spending a lot of time preparing for a major VIP visit from France and Australia. In early February, Thierry Mallet (our international CEO) and leaders from Transdev Australasia will join us to talk about the future of our Auckland business and how we can improve it. I am looking forward to it. We are doing well and it is a great opportunity to make sure we will be in Auckland for many more decades to come.
Ma te wa,