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ScotRail is undertaking a wide-ranging review of customer operations as it looks to transform the railway following the impact of the pandemic.
All customer-facing functions will be reviewed, the results of which are intended to deliver improvements for people travelling, and better meet the needs of rail users. Also, the review will not result in a loss of job for any member of staff.
One area under review is ticket office opening hours at stations throughout the country. The intention is that changes in opening hours will provide customers with a better level of service.
It is expected that after the pandemic is over, some aspects of the travelling patterns of customers will return, but others will never be the same. The review will ensure ScotRail delivers the best possible service to those using its services and stations.
From the proposed changes, ScotRails believe that:
The review does not mean job losses or a reduction in services:
Even before the pandemic, customers were increasingly using online options or Ticket Vending Machines, rather than ticket offices. Over the past 10 years, there has been a 50 percent drop in the use of ticket offices, and the pandemic has increased that pace of change.
The last time that ticket office opening hours was reviewed was in 1991. A dramatic shift in customer patterns has prompted this review to determine whether the needs of customers are still being met. It will consider whether there is a decline in tickets sales at stations, what opportunities exist to reduce fraudulent travel, and how revenue can be increased through more revenue protection teams.
A public consultation seeking the views of customers about the changes being proposed began on 12 January, and is being conducted by Transport Focus, the independent watchdog for transport users.
Customers can review the changes proposed for their stations via the ScotRail website here
The most significant benefit of the proposed changes is to deliver a financially and environmentally sustainable railway that will deliver value for money for customers and taxpayers.
Phil Campbell, Head of Customer Operations, said: “There has been no real review of our ticket office opening hours for 30 years, and it is important we keep up with the changing habits of customers who no longer rely on purchasing tickets in that way.
“With more than a 50 per cent drop in the use of ticket offices, heightened by the pandemic, we want to do everything we can to make sure everyone has a hassle-free journey.
“Nobody in ScotRail will lose their jobs as a result of these changes, and it is important to note that rather being about cutting jobs, this is about adding value for our staff and customers.
“Over the coming weeks, we’ll be talking to customers, staff, and stakeholders about the improvements they can expect to see and experience as they travel around Scotland’s Railway.”
This article first appeared on www.railadvent.co.uk
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