New Jersey Transit

Customer Satisfaction Survey Results
Executive Summary
The 15th tracking period of NJ TRANSIT's online customer satisfaction survey was conducted February 23, 2015, through March 16, 2015, measuring the 3rd quarter of fiscal year 2015. Customers were asked to rate NJ TRANSIT on 42 service attributes on a scale of "0" to "10," where "0" is "Not Acceptable," "5" is "Acceptable," and "10" is "Excellent," and then to identify which three attributes are most important. NJ TRANSIT has been measuring customer satisfaction among its sixteen markets (eight rail lines, four bus markets, three light rail lines, and access link) since April 2011, and this quarter completes the fifteenth tracking period.
Of the more than 466,000 daily customers who used NJ TRANSIT services during this period, 21,654 responded to the survey, a response rate of 4.6 percent. This was the seventh quarter with both an English and Spanish version of the questionnaire available to our customers. One hundred fifty-five (155) customers took the survey in Spanish during this time period.
System-wide, the overall satisfaction score remained stable at 6.2, representing the second highest score since the program was implemented in April 2011.
When asked if customers would recommend NJ TRANSIT to their friends or relatives, nearly 8 in 10 customers (76 percent) said they were "Very Likely" or "Somewhat Likely" to recommend. Highest recommendation levels come from our Access Link customers (92 percent), whereas highest increases this quarter came from the NY Interstate Bus customer market (72 percent this quarter vs 67 percent last quarter) and the South Jersey Bus Market (87 percent this quarter vs 82 percent last quarter).
Bus
With approximately 300,000 average weekday riders, bus customers make up roughly 60 percent of NJ TRANSIT's customer base.
Overall customer satisfaction for our Bus system increased slightly from 6.2 to 6.3 this quarter. Some top concerns for bus were: On-time Performance, Weekday PM Peak Schedule, Fares, and Boarding Station/Stop Parking Availability.
NJ TRANSIT has been working with the Port Authority of NY & NJ and the NYC Department of Transportation to improve traffic flow in and out of Port Authority Bus Terminal (PABT). The efforts at PABT have yielded positive results. Overall satisfaction for the NY Interstate Bus market continued to increase from 5.4 last quarter to 5.8 this quarter, the biggest increase achieved by any market this quarter. Many customers provided commendations regarding the recent improvements at the Port Authority Bus Terminal. Interstate Bus customers also appreciated the MyBus features now available to them. "I also love the real-time MyBus updates where I can check how far away the bus is before I walk out my door. Fantastic." "Since the App is based on real time GPS Bus information, I know exactly what time the bus will arrive at my stop. As long as I plan accordingly, the bus arrives on time."
Rail
Ridership on NJ TRANSIT's Rail system averaged about 146,000 customers on a weekday during this period - representing approximately 31 percent of our customers. Rail customers' overall satisfaction remained stable at 5.9 this quarter. Top concerns for rail customers were: On-time Performance, Fares, and Mechanical Reliability.
While Handling of Service Disruptions has been a key driver to improve in the Rail market for 11 out of the 15 quarterly customer satisfaction surveys, it has dropped off of the key drivers list this quarter, with scores for this attribute continuing to improve over time. Even though scores have improved, Rail Management recognizes that there is still much to be done to improve customer satisfaction in this area. In an effort to further understand the issues and to prepare an improvement plan, focus groups with customers were conducted in March 2015.
Light Rail
Riders of NJ TRANSIT's three Light Rail lines make up 8 percent of our customer base - almost 39,000 people ride the light rail systems on an average weekday. Overall satisfaction dipped to 7.0 from 7.2 last quarter. Safety and Security remain consistent concerns for Light Rail customers. NJ TRANSIT has installed an onboard camera system on all Newark and River LINE cars. A new program was launched to install an onboard camera system on Hudson-Bergen Light Rail cars.
Riders of NJ TRANSIT's three Light Rail lines make up 8 percent of our customer base - about 37,500 people ride the light rail systems on an average weekday. Overall satisfaction dipped to 6.9 from 7.0 last quarter. Safety and Security remain consistent concerns for Light Rail customers. Other top concerns for Light Rail customers include: Fares, Seating Availability, Cleanliness On-board, Announcements/Information during Service Disruptions, and Weekday Evening/Night Schedule.
To help address customer concerns in Security, the River LINE in South Jersey has implemented an onboard video camera system, which enables NJ TRANSIT Police to review the recorded video to monitor activity on the vehicle. Subsequently, onboard cameras will also be rolled out on NJ TRANSIT's other two light rail lines, Hudson-Bergen and Newark Light Rail, starting in June 2015.
In the comments received during the survey period, some customers have thanked NJ TRANSIT for the added weekend capacity on the Hudson-Bergen system. By implementing two-car trains during most of the day, NJ TRANSIT has eliminated the crowding and congestion on Saturdays and Sundays.
Light Rail will also be adding new, longer light rail cars to their fleet to increase capacity for the growing demand. These cars will begin arriving from the manufacturer later in the year (Fall, 2015) on the Hudson-Bergen system and will also eventually be put into operation on Newark Light Rail.
Access Link
Access Link, NJ TRANSIT's para-transit service for persons with disabilities, carries about 4,000 customers on a typical weekday. Overall satisfaction increased slightly from 8.0 last quarter to 8.1 this quarter. Top concerns for Access Link customers were: Scheduling, On-time Performance, Comfort On-board, Reservationists, and Overall Trip Time. Access Link conducted Gold Level Customer Service training, and it has been appreciated by customers as Customer Service has dropped off the key driver list.
Next Steps
To achieve the FY15 customer satisfaction goal of 6.5, the Corporation will focus on maintaining the key drivers in markets that exceeded the goal and improve the key driver scores in markets where scores are low and customer impact is high.
The depth of the information gathered from the surveys will continue to help drive the Corporation in making strategic decisions in the areas of its operating budget, capital program, customer service and marketing initiatives, as well as its operations and safety and security. The survey also will give our customers, stakeholders, and NJ TRANSIT a clear window into how the Corporation is performing.
The next survey (4th quarter, fiscal year 2015) is scheduled to be administered May 25, 2015 through June 15, 2015.
Survey Methodology
The survey asks Bus, Rail, Light Rail, and Access Link customers to rate their satisfaction with NJ TRANSIT on a scale of 0 to 10. Customers gave ratings on 42 aspects of NJ TRANSIT's service and provided basic origin, destination and demographic information. As part of the survey, customers were also asked to identify the most important service attributes among the list of 42 attributes that they rated. It is important to note that the survey was designed to provide actionable data by identifying specific areas needing attention, allowing the Corporation to focus resources on key drivers of satisfaction and improve the overall customer experience.