Will the 'new normal' ever arrive?
Having worked in the transport industry for over 30 years, I can honestly say I have not seen as much disruption and change as I have since the start of 2020.
The pandemic was clearly a difficult time for the world and changed our thinking and attitudes on many fronts. Most of our working lives changed during this time, and many changed forever. It also opened up new opportunities for many, including myself, relocating back to the UK and taking up my new role in Citi Logik.
Since moving back to the UK, I certainly commute a lot less and in a much more random way than I used to, travelling less frequently but further. I also found myself driving more often than using public transport – not something I'm particularly proud of (and certainly not good for keeping my emails under control!). But that's changing now, especially since fuel prices have rocketed; I just hope that the disruption to the train services isn't a long-term trend – who knows? The "new normal" is not coming any time soon – will it ever?
And then, of course, our economy is under huge pressure with rising inflation and no certainty that it will come under control soon, and so many organisations face significant staffing challenges. But looking on the positive side, where there are challenges, there are opportunities. At Citi Logik, we've been looking at how we can help our customers deal with all this uncertainty and continue to deliver on their strategies and fulfil their needs.
We're finding that our customers are facing real challenges getting good data to make decisions that are key to their organisation. When I say 'good data', I don't mean that the data they have previously used is bad; it's just that it's only valid (i.e., good) for a period in time. Pre 2020, that period in time was a year or two or even longer, but now that period in time can be a matter of weeks. Our customers need more regular data so that they can more regularly validate the decisions they are making and quickly pivot when things change.
Budgets are another challenge for our customers. Many still have to perform the same day-to-day activities (but with less money), while ever-increasing people costs mean they can't afford their own data specialists.
Some traditional ways of getting good data (from the census, travel surveys, manual counts or temporary infrastructure) are unlikely to meet our customers' needs. These sources are outdated, too expensive to repeat regularly, or the capture approach doesn't align with decarbonisation targets.
Over the last year, we have radically reshaped our offering to align with those specific customer needs to:
Build a set of template reports (location analysis, footfall, EV charging, to name a few)
Define personalised locations, regions and zones
Deliver insights, not just data
Go back in time and see trends
Rerun reports as we drop in new data at the end of each month
and of course, at an affordable price
Last month we were proud to launch the Citi Logik People Movement Portal… https://www.citilogik.com/portal
As I've already said, things change, and we will continue to listen to customers and adapt our portal as we get feedback. I'd love to hear your feedback – drop your comments below or send me a PM if you want free trial access to our new portal.