First Bus has teamed up with tech company Optibus to complete the digital transformation of First Bus’ scheduling data, processes, and systems across all UK operations.
Over the course of their five-year partnership, First Bus has tested many new Optibus features in live environments, helping to tailor the product to real-life scenarios and unique challenges faced by operators across the United Kingdom, spanning electric vehicle deployment, cost efficiency, and effective network redesign to meet new travel patterns.
The implementation will improve the lives of our staff and our customers whilst making us more agile as a business in facing challenges and delivering the best possible service. We look forward to continuing to work in partnership with the team at Optibus to discover opportunities for improvement and to push the UK public transport industry forwardSimon Pearson, First Bus Chief Commercial Officer
Optibus with First Bus: 4,000 buses involved
One of the largest operators in the UK, First Bus has selected Hitachi Europe as a prime strategic partner for the decarbonisation programme at its flagship Caledonia bus depot in Glasgow. The partnership is expected to support First Bus in its decarbonisation journey, starting with the provision of 148 electric buses over the next 18 months. Up to 300 EV buses are indeed expected to be hosted in the depot, that is claimed to be UK’s largest EV charging hub.
The first unicorn in the public transport industry, Optibus has a cooperation in force with Enel X and has been adopted so far in 1,000 cities worldwide and has recently announced the acquisition of Trillium, a SaaS provider that helps transportation operators and agencies keep passengers informed.
Back to the digital transformation venture, Optibus stresses that “The roll-out of Optibus across First Bus will enable all of its operating companies (OpCos) to improve the service and operational efficiency of 4,000 buses across Glasgow, Bristol, Essex, Yorkshire, Cornwall, and more, leading to improved services for over 1 million daily passengers and smoother, faster work processes for dozens of schedulers”.
First Bus now has the capability to be more agile with network decision making and explore enhancement to work patterns and rosters using advanced duty optimisation algorithms and an automated rostering product, bringing real-time and localised solutions to the UK public transport industry.
A 5-year partnership between First Bus and Optibus
First Bus Chief Commercial Officer, Simon Pearson, said: “We are delighted to have rolled out Optibus’ innovative new software across our UK business. The implementation will improve the lives of our staff and our customers whilst making us more agile as a business in facing challenges and delivering the best possible service. We look forward to continuing to work in partnership with the team at Optibus to discover opportunities for improvement and to push the UK public transport industry forward.”
Optibus General Manager, EMEA, Dave Joshua, said: “Making public transportation better requires input from operators, drivers, and schedulers on the frontlines of daily operations. First Bus has been a valuable partner in helping Optibus to develop custom technological solutions for the UK public transport market, and beyond. We are grateful for their insight and are proud to count them as one of our partners in making public transportation better, together.”