News & Analysis

How Technology Can Solve Staff Transportation Challenges

Autonomous Cars

By Surajit Das

Life insurance, health insurance, retirement plan in the form of gratuity and Provident fund, paid vacations, flexible work hours, and so on… benefits like these can make any organization the best place to work in. Many corporates in India are indeed going out of the way to make their employees love their job places, promising a good work-life balance.

However, when it comes to employee transportation, most organizations still follow a paper-and-phone-based process. This comes with a diverse set of challenges as an organization grows. Apart from high costs, confusion and lack of accountability, unorganized transportation systems can also be unsafe for the corporate employees.

According to a study conducted by the National Sample Survey Organization (NSSO), the number of two-way commuters in the country increased from 6.34 million to 24.62 million from 1993 – 2010. This indicates that millions of commuters travel to and from work every single day. Unfortunately, they are left to rely on the country’s unpredictable public transportation system comprising buses, autos or even unregulated cabs.

The excess traffic on Indian roads further intensifies the problems in the form of rampant traffic jams, pile-ups and breakdowns. A study conducted by the University of the West of England reported that every extra minute spent traveling to and from work reduces job and leisure time satisfaction, increases strain and worsens the mental health of employees.

Meanwhile, due to increasing rotational shifts at corporate organizations, several employees, including women are required to travel at odd hours using company-sponsored unorganised cabs services. Such organisations refrain from introducing technology to their transportation facility fearing it to be costlier and complicated.

Unfortunately, there have been many instances where the safety of women traveling by road has been compromised. While the government is taking steps towards the safety of women in public spaces, corporates too should take note of the situation and provide them with safe and effective modes of travel. There are several innovative enterprises that are leveraging technology to deliver automated transport systems, striving to make corporate commuting safer, compliant and optimized in India.

Tech-enabling Transportation

The automated transportation systems basically are tech-driven that can facilitate seamless solutions to employee transportation issues faced by corporate organisations such as rostering, routing, and tracking cabs. By utilizing front-line technologies such as cloud computing, IoT, AI, and automation, innovative systems can plot the shortest and quickest routes while also aligning the employees together that live on the same route.

This time-deviation based automated routing could ensure that employees’ travel time is reduced to a minimum during cab sharing. That said, employees can get the opportunity to provide feedback at any given time on which, action or investigation can be easily taken on the basis of data related to routes, timing, over speeding etc.

These advanced transportation systems can also predict demand and supply of transportation within the organization so companies only order as many automobiles as required on a day to day basis.  Moreover, by employing predictive analysis tools glitches like approaching bottlenecks and congestion can be identified to reduce the number of hours spent by employees on the road every day.

Aiding Women’s Safety

Technology integrated automated transportation services can also potentially ensure secure travel for women on the road.  By employing VR-based apps, employees can ensure safe drop confirmations to the destination. The real-time tracking option for female-only cabs through GPS on driver’s mobile phone further enables the employers to ensure that their employees are reaching their destination safe and sound.

Automated transportation services also emphasise on handling wee hours driving with extra care and ensure that the women employees are not dropped in the end.

Meanwhile, automated guard deployment and a robust guard check-in verification can safeguard the interest of both the corporates and their employees that only compliant cabs with verified drivers, evaluated through ratings and reviews, are deployed by aggregators for employee transportation purposes.

Automated employee transportation is also integrated with the number masking facility to ensure that all coordination with the driver is done without sharing the number with the driver. Whereas, the response time in case of an SOS alarm raised during an emergency situation comes down to under one minute.

By deploying such tech-enabled procedures, employers can inculcate a sense of security and satisfaction among the women employees, encouraging more of them to join the workforce, take up roles that demand extensive commuting and claim their position as the backbone of the Indian economy them to.

Organizations must recognise this fact soon and drive their energies towards increasing women’s safety by adopting the solutions of corporate commute service providers that offer unmatched travel facilities for employees travelling to work from far off locations. This will not only bolster employee safety but also keep the productivity of corporate establishments on the peak.

(The author is the Chief Executive Officer of Routematic, a company that provides employee transportation solutions through cutting edge technology and a fleet of vehicles)

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