Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Into the lion's den?

Those who have read my (increasingly sporadic) blog entries over time will probably have noticed a bit of a shift. In ignorance, I started out solely blaming Connex for the appalling state of our rail network, but as I've gained a better understanding the focus shifted more towards our state government, specifically Batchelor and more recently the Cloth-Eared Nuff-Nuff.

Along the way Connex has made improvements to the reliability of the trains, so while they're far from perfect the number of cancellations has reduced since this blog started two and a half years ago. What hasn't improved all that much is the hopeless communication when things do go wrong. SMS alerts are still very unreliable, the old screens have been replaced by new ones but they still display "listen for announcement" all too often. And we still stand on the platform wondering if/when our train will arrive, several minutes after the scheduled departure time, without word from Connex. You can't blame Kosky et al for that!

A couple of years ago I participated in what we laughingly called "discussion" on the Railpage forums. At the time, somebody challenged me to put up or shut up - ie if I thought I could do better why didn't I go work for Connex and see if I could fix things. At the time I was enjoying the challenges of my current position so I politely declined. Two years later that position has changed, and I had the opportunity to go talk to Connex about just such a possibility. So that's what happened yesterday afternoon.

Let's just sum it up by saying that I don't really think Connex is ready for my approach! Much as I would've liked to put my money where my mouth is, I'm afraid it's just not going to happen. It's a pity because I have a lot of confidence that I could've really made a difference, but it's just not meant to be.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Connex are solely responsible for the poor communication when things go wrong. The government cannot control what Connex do in terms of communication except liquidated damages clauses in their next contract for poor communication, and have the government set up an express trust in favour of passengers for the proceeds of the liquidated damages.

21 November, 2007 08:40  

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