Developing a strategic proposition roadmap for a group of leading travel providers
Transport for West Midlands are responsible for coordinating transport services in the heart of England, working with train and bus operators to ensure transportation is safe, reliable, affordable and accessible. Transport for West Midlands approached us at a key stage in their future transport change initiative, looking to implement Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS) within the region to integrate multiple transport solutions into a single accessible service.
Steering the mission
To achieve their goals, Transport for West Midlands needed to engage the other main players in the Midlands transport ecosystem: West Midlands Trains and National Express. Our role was to help these influential stakeholder groups achieve alignment and generate a solid, step-by-step implementation strategy for a MaaS solution.
Speed bumps ahead
Transport for West Midlands and their partners had some thorny challenges to address. These included creating a local transport data hub, designing a mobility credits scheme, and ensuring positive social and environmental impact within the local community. They also had to consider the commercial and practical requirements of the corporate members of the group, supporting their strategies for growth and integrating with their existing systems. On an organisational level, they ultimately needed to build up a structured portfolio of initiatives to turn the MaaS concept into reality.
The starting line
The first phase of the project required a better understanding of the context of the brief, what needed to be done, and what resources were required to realise the vision. We ran a series of workshops to define the desired project outcomes, review the intended business strategy, and set out the rules of engagement. We also carried out ‘deep dives’ into themes such as ticketing, cash, tokenisation and data management, and worked with stakeholders to map out an in-depth technology strategy for the MaaS platform.
After the workshops came three weeks of intensive desk research, which kicked off with a review of the group’s existing data around journey planning, real-time information discovery, and mobility credits. We followed this up with a review of other MaaS schemes from around the globe, looking at how they had been created and their entry and exit strategies. We then analysed the overarching strategies of TfWM and their partners to ensure there was alignment between them.
In the next phase of the project, we gathered original research, beginning with stakeholder interviews. We targeted key opinion-leaders and decision-makers to better understand their main objectives, goals, constraints and aspirations. We then conducted a series of user interviews with public transport users, private transport users, and customers of competing travel apps and services. This helped us to build up an understanding of how people were currently engaging with different transport solutions at different times.
Using the insights gathered so far, the final output was a visual roadmap, outlining the go-to-market strategy and recommended actions the group needed to take to realise their vision and launch a successful MaaS solution. A prioritised portfolio of initiatives accompanied a ‘blueprint for change’ document, which summarised and evaluated our findings and identified any areas that needed further development to validate assumptions.
Journey to MaaS
Following the strategic proposition roadmap, Transport for West Midlands have been able to go to market with their MaaS project, with buy-in and consensus from all of the major stakeholders involved. The project is in-flight and delivering promising results so far, with initiatives continuing to be developed.
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