‘It’s only right that we praise the hard work of our scheduling team on Transport Planning Day’

 
Left to right: Graham Hill and Christopher Strong

 
Today is Transport Planning Day and bus operator Go North East is celebrating the hard work that goes on behind the scenes from its network planning and scheduling team.

The Go-Ahead-owned company’s team of four schedulers, led by network design manager Graham Hill, are responsible for creating timetables for customers and duties for colleagues, and have had to be more flexible this year than ever before due to the coronavirus crisis.

Schedules have had to be changed throughout the pandemic, sometimes daily, to react to changing circumstances and customer demand to ensure the people of the North East can travel safely from A to B, especially key worker journeys during the depths of the first lockdown.

Schedulers have also had to adapt to home working as a result of Covid, but keep in touch with the live operation through video-conferencing and the roll out of some new IT to help support the critical link between the plan and what is happening out on the road.

The network planning and scheduling team at Go North East also play an important role in tackling climate change and creating a sustainable, healthy future, by making sure schedules not only meet the needs of customers, but also ensuring that they are as efficient as possible.

They’re the ones behind the scenes that have enabled our frontline colleagues to transport people across the region throughout the pandemic

“It’s only right that we praise the hard work of our scheduling team on Transport Planning Day,” said Martijn Gilbert, managing director at Go North East.

“They’re the ones behind the scenes that have enabled our frontline colleagues to transport people across the region throughout the pandemic, from key workers to those making essential shopping trips.

“I’m sure they’ll struggle to remember a time as demanding as this, but they’ve adapted and delivered on every aspect – I can’t thank them enough for their efforts.”

Gilbert is one of of the judges for the The Joe Wood Scheduler of the Year 2020, a free-to-attend virtual event that takes places this week (November 19).

Launched by Passenger Transport and innovative data-driven scheduling and business intelligence platform CitySwift, the award seeks to raise awareness of the important work that is done by schedulers, and celebrate leaders in the field. It is also is a tribute to Joe Wood, a widely respected young bus manager who died last year.

This event is very close to my heart having started my transport career as a scheduler

Commenting on Twitter last week, Gilbert wrote: “This event is very close to my heart having started my transport career as a scheduler (they’re all too often the unsung hero’s of our profession), and in memory of a former good friend and colleague Joe Wood who was full of talent and sadly taken from this world far too young.”

Book your FREE place

An in-person award ceremony was originally due to happen back in March, but had to be postponed due to Covid-19. Instead the organisers have decided that the winner will be announced on November 19 at a special online virtual event where each of the five finalists will be showcased.

There will also be a special roundtable discussion hosted by Passenger Transport managing editor Robert Jack with contributions from high profile industry figures. The winner will be announced by Joe’s father Gary Wood.

To book your FREE place at the virtual ceremony, simply visit bit.ly/32s6A9A – we hope that you’ll be able to join us!