The transit system’s first regional Customer Satisfaction Survey (CSS) results were reported at the Regional Transportation Authority’s (RTA) board meeting today. The report revealed that customers overall were highly satisfied with the services provided both at the regional and service board level.
Approximately 91 percent of survey respondents said they would recommend the transit system to others. Additionally, 83 percent said they are satisfied with service overall that is operated by the Chicago Transit Authority, Metra and Pace. Other highly ranked survey categories included the ease of transferring to other services - 79 percent and the availability of transit - 78 percent.
The survey was conducted by Resource Systems Group that involved surveys being administered onboard buses and trains and through e-mail. Over 33,000 people were surveyed across the region from various economic incomes and ages, and by gender, 54 percent of respondents were male and 46 percent were female.
“We are as satisfied with the survey results as the riders are with our service,” said Joe Costello, RTA Executive Director. “Despite our transit system’s constrained funding, we continue to meet the needs of our customers, and our agencies continue efforts to implement system priorities that enhance the customer experience and maximize use of the system,” he added.
Customer service metrics that matter most to customers uniformly across the system were:
- Getting to destination on time
- Total travel time for your trip
- How safely the bus/train is operated
- Cleanliness on-board
- On-board personnel courtesy
In general, customers have the highest levels of satisfaction with attributes in the Safety and Employee Performance categories and somewhat lower satisfaction with attributes in the Comfort and Cleanliness categories.
In response to the regional customer satisfaction survey results, transit operators reacted positively and stated their commitments to further improve efficiencies, coordination and customer service.
“Metra is gratified to again see strong satisfaction scores for what customers have identified as the most important service attributes,” said Metra CEO Alex Clifford. “We are focused on maintaining a high quality of service for our customers. This includes the continual improvement of our on-time performance. We plan to analyze and use the data collected to identify ways to continue to improve the customer experience.”
“The survey results show that we’re on the right track as it relates to restructuring our service to improve efficiency and bring bus routes into line with customer demand,” said Pace Chairman of the Board Richard Kwasneski. “We will continue this process throughout the region by actively engaging our riders and stakeholders to ensure we’re providing service when and where it’s most effective, with particular attention to coordination with CTA and Metra.”
The survey satisfies the State Legislature’s reporting requirements and helps to better understand customer perceptions of service quality from a regional perspective which had not been done previously. Cost savings from conducting the regional survey was $500,000 vs. if agencies each conducted individual surveys. Also the regional survey approach addresses the transit system’s Economies of Scale regional priorities initiative that seeks to reduce expenses and achieve efficiencies. Work on the survey began in 2010 with the RTA and service boards collaborating to construct a consistent set of customer satisfaction questions and sampling methods.
Download the regional customer satisfaction survey report.