Monday, December 17, 2007

This blog is moving

We have decided to move this blog to a new location and software package?

Why?

Our current blogging platform has a number of limitations that we cannot continue to ignore, especially in the new year when we start to upload videos to the blog :-) and this time of the year is invariably the "silly season" in our industry - where people are busy with private hire work etc.. so it seemed the right time to move now.

Our new blog is located at:

http://www.travel-manager.co.uk/blog

Kind Regards

Mike

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Interesting stats from Learn Direct

There are over 130,000 drivers working in over 6,000 UK bus and coach companies today. The majority of these companies are owner / driver businesses with less than 10 employees.

Also re-iterates the point about new EU directives coming into force:-

"A new EU Directive comes into force on 10th September 2008, which states that new PCV drivers will need to gain a Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) as well as the PCV licence. It is known as the Driver CPC. Existing PCV drivers will be able to gain the CPC through periodic training."

Learn Direct has a great site which details everything you need to know on becoming a bus / coach driver or a road transport manager.


Regards

Mike

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Improvements to the look and feel coming in the New Year

We are always looking at ways to improve our products & services and who better to ask than you guys? Thats why we launched the "functionality voting" tool. In the first 12 days we have had 47 ideas generated and 252 votes cast. Excellent!

We also thought it time to spruce up our main website so you can find information about us easier and quicker than before. The prototype can be found in the screenshot below.























We will be launching this new look and feel in the New Year and then start work on improving the look and feel of the TravelManager application itself. So as always, your feedback on whats "hot or not" in our current design and where you would like to see improvements are welcome. We will incorporate the best ideas wherever we can.

Regards

Mike

Where are you all?

We now have TravelManager being used by bus and coach operators in 146 towns and cities across the UK. This map shows the heat spots associated with where those operators are.























Lots of yellow still to turn orange / red.

Regards

Mike

Monday, December 10, 2007

TravelManager joins the CPT

TravelManager is now pleased to announce it is a member of the CPT (Confederation of Passenger Transport UK).







We believe in the philosophy behind the CPT - working in partnership is better than working in isolation - and look forward to being an active participant in future events.

Regards

Mike

UK Bus Passengers set to rise....

Found an interested report published by the CPT on the 15th November 2007.

The report: "Moving Forward - New Opportunities, New Passengers" reveals the potential for 129 million new bus passenger journeys a year, resulting in nearly 17 million fewer car journeys a year and an annual CO2 emission reduction of 27,500 tonnes.

Thats a lot of additional journeys.

The full report can be downloaded from here.

Regards

Mike

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Customer Ideas Update

Since launching the "Functionality Voting" tool last thursday (7 days ago) we have had 35 ideas raised and 160 votes cast.

Not bad.. but I think we can do better than that if we put our minds to it ;-)

Get your ideas into us or get voting on the ideas that are already there and have your say as to what we develop next. Don't be shy :-)

Between now and the New Year we are focusing on documentation, tutorials, online training and general FAQ's within the application to make it easier for everyone to find the functionality currently with the system. In the New Year we will start developing functionality again.

So remember, we like being busy. In fact we thrive on it ;-)

Keep those ideas coming in and make demands upon us as to what functionality you want to see developed in the New year - and we will endeavor to deliver it.

Regards

Mike

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Free Online Training

We seem to have a bit of confusion re: the Free Online Training we are offering.

Anyone who is interested in attending one of the FREE sessions is FREE to do so whenever they wish and on as many occasions as they wish - for FREE. However, there are only 10 places available per training session (on a first come first served basis) but they run twice every tuesday - once at 11am and once at 5:30pm. So if you miss out on one don't worry - put your name down for the next available slot asap.

Also, if we find that these times are unsuitable for you guys or we need to organise more slots then we will and they will still be FREE :-)

So just to be clear - we will never ever charge you for learning how to use TravelManager.

If you want to attend an online training session once a week for the next year then so be it - were here to help but I'm sure you'll soon get bored of my voice and dry humour :-)

We are already taking names for next weeks FREE sessions - so if you want to join one let me know - it wont cost you a penny apart from the telephone call :-)

regards

Mike

Friday, November 30, 2007

UK Bus and Coach Operators site now live!

Our new site UK Bus and Coach Operators is now live.




















What is this site?

Simple. It's going to be the UK's foremost site for UK Bus and Coach Operators. Every operator in the UK that signs up to TravelManager will recieve a FREE website which is controlled from within TravelManager. You will be able to add photo's, testimonials, links and documents to your site.

Future versions will allow you to include information on your timetables, tours and vehicle availability.

Why should you use this system?

We at TravelManager understand the Internet. We are using some of the latest technology which will help your company get greater visibility on the Internet. We use microformats all over the site which helps "explain" you to the search engines more efficiently and effectively that traditional methods.

Bottom Line. A company showcasing its business within this site over the next couple of months will be better placed to get business than anywhere else.

You don't need to get rid of your current website - just link from your TravelManager generated site to your current one and you get the best of both worlds :-)

What have you got to loose. Its included as FREE in your subscription :-)

Regards

Mike

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Customer Focus

We've said all along that we are customer focused. Now we have launched a new tool which we believe shows how customer focused we are.

We have launched the 1st phase of the "Customer Voting" solution. This enables you, the customer, to request and vote on the functionality that you would like to see implemented next.

Its a very simply tool to use. We listen to all of your feedback and requests and then add them to the list. You vote on them as and when you want. The more votes that a particular piece of functionality has then the more likely it is going to be developed sooner than later.

Likewise, if we have an item with a large negative score then its highly unlikely that we will develop that functionality (we may have to tweak the idea slightly to become more generic for example)

So whats it look like?

Here is the original list as uploaded today. Note everything currently has a score of zero.
















When you vote for an item your vote is counted and either added or subracted from the current score (+1 for a "Yes Vote" and -1 for a "No Vote") - which then re-orders the list accordingly.

















Voting is anonymous but you will be able to see the scores change in real time - as other customers vote for their favourite items.

So, please tell us what functionality you want so we can add it to the list and get others voting for your ideas and develop the good ones as quickly as possible.

We want to create the best product on the market today (and tomorrow) and we believe this is the most efficient and effective way of getting your ideas out of your heads and into development so you can benefit from them :-)

Regards

Mike

Sunday, November 25, 2007

TravelManager goes International....

For all of our international customers, TravelManager is pleased to announce that it is now capable of dealing with Dollar and Euro currencies. You can your currency under the MyAccount - > Account Information section. Choose your currency from the drop down list on the edit section.

Regards

Mike

Friday, November 23, 2007

Greater Levels of Control for Administrators

We are currently improving the permissions system in TravelManager so you have greater levels of control over the users within you account and the privileges that they have with regard to viewing and editing information.

We will be rolling this functionality out over the next couple of days. A screenshot of one of the screens follows - click on the image to zoom in.























This functionality gives you significantly more control over your business. Imagining being able to recruit a temp over the busy Christmas / New Year period and allowing them access to only a section of your information knowing full well they are locked out of other areas.

If you have any feedback or suggestions on this functionality - let us know!

Regards

Mike

Friday, November 16, 2007

Be in control of your assets

We believe in writing reports which help you make decisions. On the back of the work we have been doing on the defect sheets we have developed a report which shows you over time the amount of defects raised on a per vehicle basis.

We believe that this is an important report. Imagine being able to see at a glance which vehicles are having significant numbers of defects raised on them over time and then be able to drill down on those defects and see what the issues were.

Its all about putting you the operator in control of your assets. Click on the screenshot to zoom into the image.


















If there are any reports that you can think of that would make your life easier. Talk to us! I'm sure we can figure it out between us :-)

Have a great weekend!

Mike
(www.travel-manager.co.uk)

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Defect Sheet Improvements

We have made significant progress on the defect sheet improvements - so much so that we are rolling out the first set of functionality this evening.

We have implemented the functionality to allow multiple defect sheets to be entered in one screen so all vehicles without defects which still require a defect sheet logged can be done in less than 2 minutes. Click on the screen shot below for an enlarged view.










We have also created the functionality to group multiple defect sheets into a single garage job or attach to an already scheduled garage job - meaning its really easy to monitor the status of all of your vehicles.







Regards

Mike
(www.travel-manager.co.uk)

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Defect Sheet Improvements

This week we are working on some improvements to the Garage module which allows the defect sheet to go through the complete lifecycle. ie. a defect sheet can be assigned to the garage as a job and then reported upon.

For example we are building the reporting capability to show things like:-

  • Number of defects raised over time
  • Number of defects by vehicle over time
  • Number of defects worked on by mechanic over time
  • Average closure time for a defect
  • Amount spent on a vehicle over time on parts and labour

We anticipate having some of the improvements in place before the end of the week and would very much like your feedback on them. If you can think of any other reports which you think would be useful then let us know.

Regards

Mike