A Guide to Planning One-Call Services. Simplifying Access to Transportation Services & Information

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1 A Guide to Planning One-Call Services Simplifying Access to Transportation Services & Information

2 Today s Session Presentation of project process & results Discussion: What is your experience? Currently involved in one-call service? Thinking about implementing?

3 Purpose and Process To help communities assess if a transportation one-call service is right for them Process Research on internet Survey of one-call services Interviews with experts Case studies

4 Products Planning Guide Advice from the Experts Survey Results Case Studies Resources Fact Sheets

5 What We Heard 20% Web based survey Part 1 Governance / organization Part 2 Transportation services 48 completed surveys 30% 14%

6 What We Heard

7 What We Heard - Common Themes Build on existing community resources Start with an assessment of needs & resources Establish a clear vision Build partnerships

8 More Themes Growing incrementally is a good strategy A foundation creates a head start: Working relationships Information and Assistance programs Partnerships Marketing and outreach are important to success

9 It Takes More Time than Expected It takes time to: Build relationships with partners Transition to a new understanding of how services can be provided Transition to a customer focus Obtain funding, based on grant cycles Work out the implementation details Catch up after staff or leadership changes

10 Transportation One-Call Services Are diverse Tailored to community needs Take advantage of existing resources Are part of an overall coordination effort Focus on the customer Are a community asset

11 Reflect the Caller s Perspective A one-call service needs to Respond to the questions your caller has Help people save time Facilitate their travel connections It is challenging to see other perspectives To switch to a consumer s perspective To embrace all transportation options, not just the ones your agency delivers

12 Benefits for Customers It is easier to obtain information on mobility options A single eligibility process can be used for multiple programs It can provide one place to call for rides for many programs Information about customer s unmet needs is in one place

13 Benefits for Agencies Can reduce the amount of time spent on finding or explaining transportation options Agency can focus on its core mission Can assist agencies allocating resources more effectively. Adding coordination and technology: Increase rides by filling empty seats Reduce duplication of services by combining riders

14 Establishing a One-Call Service Basic Approach Integrated Coordination Approach Structured Approach Information & referral services Telephone & Web based Logical next step to ongoing coordination efforts Multiple functions / typically more complex Detailed advanced planning & design Typically greater use of technology At least three approaches

15 Planning Process

16 Assess Resources and Needs What services are available & where are the gaps? How the various service providers conduct their business

17 Assess Resources and Needs (cont.) Community connections between various services The needs of consumers The needs of potential partners

18 Define Problem Area of Concern: Eligibility LOW-TECH ISSUE One-Call STRATEGIES - An individual - Establish a needs to obtain common certification for application / several certification / programs. appeals process - Difficult to get to places to obtain certification - Provide a convenient site for eligibility such as at a transfer center for bus routes. HIGH-TECH One-Call STRATEGIES - Maintain a common database - Offer webbased eligibility forms and instruction OTHER STRATEGIES - Cross-train agency staff to complete eligibility assessments -Cross-train agency staff, especially those making assessments for other services and sees clients in their home.

19 Define Problem, Cont. Area of Concern: Appropriate Service ISSUE - Individuals may use the service they know is easiest not necessarily the one most appropriate to their abilities, trip purpose and cost of service. - If paratransit is chosen, it is also the most expensive. LOW-TECH One- Call STRATEGIES - Provide information on various services and the benefits of choosing other options. - Provide eligibility and access information for all available options. - Encourage people to use fixed route service HIGH-TECH One- Call STRATEGIES - Joint scheduling across several travel options. OTHER STRATEGIES - Travel training; - Bus buddies; - Travel hosts; - Cross training agency staff.

20 Define Problem (cont.) Area of Concern: Affordability ISSUE LOW-TECH STRATEGIES - Individual cannot afford the cost of a trip. - Agencies cannot afford to pay for adequate services for clients. HIGH-TECH STRATEGIES Does not address problem Does not address problem OTHER STRATEGIES - Vouchers or other subsidies. - Identify less expensive travel options if appropriate and available (ridesharing, fixed route transit) - Joint scheduling and agreements to combine riders can improve use of resources. - Strategies to train and shift riders to fixed route services.

21 Define Problem (cont.) Area of Concern: Scheduling / Operations ISSUE - Individuals need to call different providers for different types of trips - Trips cannot be confirmed until day before; schedule changes difficult to accommodate LOW-TECH One- Call STRATEGIES - Calls can be transferred to appropriate provider. HIGH-TECH One-Call STRATEGIES - Software giving access to provider s schedules can show available capacity, increasing flexibility. - Joint scheduling. - Web-based scheduling services OTHER STRATEGIES - Agreements to share riders can enable providers to shift riders to vehicle operating later if return is delayed. - Riders are not ready when driver arrives, causing delays - Information for trips, client data, and billing difficult to enter and update - Automatic calls to riders reminding them of ride and providing 10- minute notice of vehicle arrival. - Common database can eliminate redundancies. One agency can take on this task. - Provide information electronically instead of through faxed trip sheets eliminates redundancies

22 Determine The Right Fit Choosing the best approach Deciding which functions that will be included Selecting the lead agency and home for the one-call service.

23 Determine The Right Fit Region A minimal number of jurisdictions and human service programs More jurisdictions and complex boundaries for various programs. Many trips cross jurisdictional boundaries Providers No public transit, human service transportation only. Taxis, medical transport, etc. Single public provider, mix of human service agency providers, private providers. Minimal or no history of working together on coordination. Has a foundation of transportation coordination Basic Integrated or Structured Basic Basic or Integrated

24 Determine The Right Fit, cont. Functions and Long-Term Vision We want to start with functions that are easy to implement and low-tech We are willing to start small, but our vision is to provide many functions. -We will focus on one or two markets. - We want to serve a wide range of markets and trip purposes, Our region is complex and we see the necessity for a strong technological foundation even if initial functions are not extensive Basic Basic or Integrated Structured

25 Functions Function Information and Referral Characteristics and Options - Give customers one or more numbers to call. - Provide counseling to determine the services that are the best fit. - Provide general information on services and eligibility. -Transfer calls to a service provider. Eligibility Determination for Multiple Programs - Mobility manager who has forms for all programs and completes them at one time. -A single process (or limited number of processes) for determining eligibility for multiple programs. - Share data on eligibility with multiple providers. - Maintain a common database used by several providers.

26 Functions (cont.) Function Ombudsman Characteristics and Options - May be the responsibility of a mobility manager or case manager. -Becomes especially important when eligibility is determined. Travel Training - Trains riders to use fixed route services. -Some systems also use Bus Buddies, experienced riders who can show new riders how to use the fixed route system. Travel Hosts -Assist passengers finding their transfer connections at busy transfer centers.

27 Functions (cont.) Function Shared Reservations Characteristics and Options - Can use a software application that runs on a closed network or is web-based - Read-only: call taker can see where space is available, but cannot actually schedule trips - Read/Write: call taker can see what is available and can schedule trips - Dispatching is through a single provider Joint Scheduling - People are combined on a single vehicle - Uses multiple providers - Once trip is dispatched, the rider s contact is with the provider Joint Dispatching -Puts more vehicles under a single dispatcher to minimize disruptions due to traffic delays and vehicle breakdowns. - Single point of contact for the whole trip

28 In Manitowoc, WI, the City and County agreed to share the cost of a Mobility Manager with the County providing office space and serving as the employer of record. In Steuben County, NY, the agency agreed to add transportation to its one-call center and provide technology support. Lane County Transit, Oregon, is a public transit agency that provides onecall services. Lead Agency Non-profit agency Public transit agency Local or county government Regional planning agency Lower Savannah Council of Governments provides transportation one-call services and serves as an Aging and Disabilities Resource Center.

29 Action Plan Governance & Operations Description of planned one-call service - Functions - Lead agency & partnerships - Staffing - Resources - Location - Hours & days of service

30 Action Plan - Funding Range of funding opportunities

31 Additional Considerations Technology Quality Customer Service Marketing & Outreach

32 Technology Basic Communication: - Telephone Standard systems Call processing system Telephone management software Web based tools Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) applications need to be deployed in logical phases. There exist certain logical orders of ITS deployment in order to achieve maximum benefits. For example, without computer-aided dispatch (CAD), automatic vehicle locator (AVL) functions will be compromised. Without AVL, the value of Mobile Data Computers (MDC) cannot be fully realized, etc - Yehuda Gross

33 Technology (cont.) Technology Reservation / Scheduling Software Components - Client database, trip assignment & management - Data management AVL/MDC Communications - Monitoring vehicle locations via GPS - Digital communication of trip information Intermodal Trip Planning - Builds optimal trip itineraries - Considers multiple modes, routes, service schedules, and fare structures - Considers travel constraints of persons with Disabilities Web Client and IVR - Ability to book +/or confirm trip requests - Automate outbound trip information (i.e., ETAs) via Web, phone or text

34 Quality Customer Service Protocols, policies, and forms? Training programs? How will success or improvement be measured? What information will be needed to track progress towards goals? How will information be collected & maintained? What organizational support will be needed to operate and maintain services? How will you communicate with consumers and partners? Information available by web page?

35 Marketing & Outreach How will the lead agency market the one-call service? Will their existing marketing efforts provide adequate public awareness for one-call services? Will their existing marketing efforts provide adequate agency awareness of transportation resources?

36 Resources Aging and Disabilities Resource Center Technical Assistance Exchange Alliance of Information and Referral Systems (AIRS) Community Transportation Association of America (CTAA) Easter Seals Project ACTION Mobility Services for All Americans National Collaborative National Center for Senior Transportation National Information and Referral Support Center National Resource Center for Human Services Transportation United We Ride Initiative

37 Thank You And your experience?

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