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tee meets to evaluate these and other measures to ditions of its vehicles, the easier of the two issues to asses if any course correction actions are necessary. address. In its quarterly performance report, MTR For example, in 2007 the number of accidents also highlighted improvements that had been made increased, so KMB formed a task force that met to platform circulation. every 3 months to identify corrective actions. The SMRT not only tracks customer inquiry response annual budget was adjusted to provide additional time, but also has set a target of 14 days to address resources to target the safety issues. KMB's Corpo- customer issues. Tracking customer inquires not only rate Social Responsibility Charter states, "KMB enables SMRT to identify correction actions, but also applies and follows international standards to ensure allows them to identify adjustments to their customer that our activities are socially and environmentally service office staff and practices if necessary. responsible and that our performance meets author- itative global benchmarks. KMB is the only public bus company with both the ISO 9001 quality man- USING PERFORMANCE DATA agement system certification and ISO 14001 envi- TO REFINE STRATEGY ronmental management system certification." A When asked how the transit operators and regula- clear motivation for course corrections was to stay tory agencies made course corrections, none of the in compliance with these ISO standards. agencies said that they adjusted their targets. When Another international benchmarking organization asked if any target was lowered if performance indi- that was highlighted during the study mission was the cators were not up to expectations, the general answer Nova International Railway Benchmarking Group. was "no, we just work harder." Taipei Metro and SMRT are both members of Nova. From time to time, performance indicators are "The number of car-kilometers between every 5-plus changed at the Hong Kong bus operator KMB. For minute delay" is one of the 33 performance measures example, a fleet reliability indicator was changed tracked by Nova. Taipei Metro has accomplished from "per number of trips" basis to a "per kilometer" the best reliability record ever recorded in Nova's basis to provide a more consistent measurement. history--1.85 million car-km between two inci- In evaluation of performance, trend improvement dents. Clearly membership in Nova is a motivation from year to year is viewed as more important for Taipei Metro to implement course corrections that than measurement of absolute numbers or target prevent incidents from occurring. achievement. According to senior operations man- agement, this reflects an emphasis on continual qual- ity improvement--targets are maintained as goals Course Corrections--Customer Input and their achievement pursued; however, it is consid- Several agencies noted that customer surveys ered more important that their performance indicator were used to evaluate goals and performance and to trends show improvement from year to year. identify when course corrections were necessary. For The MTR staff in Hong Kong reflected on the example, LTA annually conducts a customer satis- fact that they had to make their findings public to faction survey to evaluate the service standards set in prove to their customers and the politicians that they the license agreements. The latest survey highlighted are meeting their demands for more efficient services. dissatisfaction with frequency of service, which ties Information gained from performance measurement directly to LTA's goal of "making public transport a is included in the annual report and in the sustainabil- choice mode." As a result, LTA will require transit ity report that shareholders receive annually. providers to increase capacity by minimizing head- SMRT officials in Singapore use data to make ways during peak period from 3 min to between 2 and budgetary, policy, and personnel changes for future 3 min and from 7 min to between 5 and 6 min during years. For example, because of reports on cleanliness, lunch periods. transit staff are now allowed to ticket riders who vio- MTR is another agency that conducts an annual late rules on drinking, smoking, and eating. customer survey to identify which improvements are Because the performance measurement process at most cost-effective. When MTR customers called RapidKL is in its infancy, staff reported that they are for clean vehicles and less crowding, MTR quickly still in the planning stage of developing a means for adjusted its cleaning schedules to improve the con- using data to alter policy and strategy. 33