Cost reduction

Bus Programs Don't Have To Be Big Fixed Budget Lines

Discover innovative approaches for optimizing bus programs without relying on large fixed budgets, as this blog challenges traditional notions and explores alternative solutions for flexible transport
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The provision of a private driver, vehicle, fuel, insurance and technology can all add up and can come as an unpleasant surprise to budget holders who are looking to provide a shuttle service for their teams.

There is always doubt for budget holders: Will my employees actually use this? Can I drag them from home into the office because of this? What if the service is only used between Tuesday-Thursday? Will I be paying for something that isn't used for 40% of the time?

Typically, procurement teams are stuck with a fixed and relatively expensive budget line without anywhere to turn apart from cancelling the contract at the next renewal date.

At the core of our offering at Zeelo is flexibility, powered by our technology: Flexibility to scale vehicles up and down quickly based on demand. Flexibility to alter routes to cater for new employee demand. Flexibility to change service times to fit with employees' schedules (including downsizing on WFH days!)

Our technology and service provision is built this way for one reason: To save money for our clients.

From a recent study of Zeelo programs across the UK and the US, we have seen average client savings of 40% on their existing bus program, after 12 months. This statistic is driven by making smart data-driven decisions to ensure the client is always getting an optimized cost per rider, based on true demand.

It's Not Just A Finance Cost! It's A Time Cost!

When we talk to organizations who run an in-house program they all say the same thing: 'We're spending a lot of time managing the backend admin of the program'.

And they're right! From our research, when you break down the time cost required to run an in-house service effectively, it adds up. Especially if it's not your full-time job.

Operator vetting, driver compliance, insurance management, rider feedback, real-time incidents, promoting the service, building reports, contract management, and route design. The list goes on and on.

By integrating our procure and safety modules, we can take this administrative headache away with our team of experts who are supported with technology that speeds up manual tasks, such as driver compliance checks and operator vetting procedures.

On average, we save up to 12 hours of admin time per week for our clients. That's time for our clients to focus on doing what they do best, knowing their program is being managed safely and securely. Plus they also get the added benefit of transparent performance reports dropping into their inbox each morning.

No One Likes Empty Buses

It's all well and good optimizing to the point that you have a low-cost solution, but it's pointless if the rider population represents a small percentage of your overall employee base.

From day one of founding Zeelo, we've had the firm belief that programs have to be designed around the rider, otherwise what's the point?!

We use our in-house proprietary routing software 'RINA' which encompasses a route generation tool powered with census, address and ongoing 'travel intent' data from riders. RINA works constantly on program performance to ensure we're given program access to a wide pool of riders while keeping costs under control.

We then execute sophisticated marketing campaigns to build awareness and drive utilization up. On average, we increase ridership by as much as 50% in 12 months.

So in summary: Bus programs don't have to be a static, heavy budget line. They can be dynamic, data-driven and above all, extremely cost-effective if you choose to work with the right provider.

If you have an existing program, or are looking to help introduce a shuttle service to get employees back to the office we'd be happy to demonstrate how we can provide a tech-enabled program that dramatically improves the employee experience and gives you greater value for money.

Get in touch with the team below and thanks for reading.

Barney Williams

Co-founder + CCO

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