Metro announces major customer service revamp
Actions underway in response to rider feedback
Metro will unveil a new Customer Service Action Plan this week aimed at improving the customer experience across the system—from improved announcements and signage, to easier payment options and customer service training for frontline employees.
“Over the past two years, we have focused on improving the safety and reliability of Metro through our massive rebuilding program, Metro Forward,” said Metro General Manager and CEO Richard Sarles. “Metro Forward is the foundation of customer service that we will now build upon as we sharpen our focus on service delivery with tangible actions and tools that will allow us to monitor our progress and identify ways to continually improve."
The plan was developed through extensive customer research, including surveys and focus groups of regular commuters, occasional riders, and visitors to the Capital region. That rider feedback was used to identify more than 50 actions that would be most responsive to needs and priorities identified by customers. Major themes that emerged for focus included: person-to-person service delivery, system communications, station environment, fare payment/machines, and security. Feedback from frontline Metro employees was also incorporated into the plan.
Riders said that their experience with station managers and bus operators was inconsistent, and expressed concerns about availability of escalators and elevators, temperature control, and low lighting. Fare payment was reported as an area that causes frustration, and security is a concern for riders at particular hours in the day.
Metro officials from multiple departments will report to the Board’s Customer Service and Operations Committee on Thursday the improvements they are making, including:
Sarles said it is his expectation that this will be an evolving program. As Metro completes some actions, other customer priorities may be identified requiring future actions.
All initiatives announced in the plan are funded in the FY13 Board-approved budget.
News release issued at 2:16 pm, June 11, 2012.