No different from other evolutionary processes in recent centuries, technology has played an important role in changing behaviors during the coronavirus pandemic.
One of the big changes concerns the way people decide to get around, trying to stay healthy and in compliance with the recommendations of health regulatory bodies globally.
If, on the one hand, there is a need to have a minimum of physical contact with other people, in recent weeks the news has shared the reopening of cities and countries, in a resumption movement that needs to happen to maintain social organization – especially in developing nations such as India.
In some cities, the reopening of commercial and non-essential activities increases the volume of commutes, and more people need to decide how and when to leave their homes, including returning to outside work.
It is at this moment that technology becomes an ally of mobility in the control of agglomerations – especially in public transport and in the ease of access to individual means of transport, such as shared bicycles, taxis, and app cars.
A plurality of transport options
People are considering composing their commute journey in different ways than before the pandemic. At this time, the provision of transport opportunities deserves special attention, as an urban organization and mobility needs vary from person to person and from location to location.
Jyoti B, CHO of ProRido, explains that the appreciation for the variety of transport alternatives is an ongoing behavior change that must remain.
She reinforces that “if you need to travel for work, your safety needs to be a priority. There is a latent change of habit underway, in which choosing the means of transport that provides you with more safety, comfort, and confidence is a priority .”
According to Jyoti, “companies are increasingly focused on keeping their professionals safe, even when they need to move around during their activities. Public transport, for example, still has intermittent operations across the country and may not be the best option at this time.”
This is mainly due to the issue of agglomerations. “Unlike air transport, which is a scientifically safe alternative about the possibility of contamination, public transport – especially at peak times and in large cities – does not offer the same tranquility for the employee”, he comments.
Choosing transport options with less physical contact and more agility is a trend that is here to stay. Whether for private use or work, the mobility habits created in this period of quarantine must last for a long time.
Corporate transport: employee and business safety
How can companies guarantee the safe transport of their employees, allowing the choice of mobility options to be made autonomously and ensuring management?
We have listed below some technology trends that have a direct impact on a safe and reliable transport operation, both for private use and during work.
Real-time data and information
When talking about a service used in the corporate sphere, it is through traceability that opportunities for improvement and risk minimization are seen.
Even with an expansion of the transport offer, there are technologies such as the ProRido solution that allow companies to monitor in real-time any displacements carried out by employees.
Data is important, too, at the other end of the process. After all, the management of information by the transport technologies themselves is of paramount importance for the success of a mobility operation.
In addition to measures to sanitize and reduce social contact in vehicles, with demarcations of safety distances between passengers and drivers, and the well-received physical barriers, transport operators already invest in monitoring and collecting information in real-time.
This action is so important for an urban mobility ecosystem, that such data is used to feed digital platforms and applications that pass on transport information to citizens for wide use.
As an example, when we talk about practicality and agility, knowing the exact time that the bus will pass or the capacity of the vehicles helps in people’s decision-making. In addition to this information being essential to increase people’s safety, in public transport passengers will be able to avoid schedules, stations, or vehicles with greater agglomerations.
Shared and on-demand mobility
Even adopting all the recommended measures, until the vaccine is discovered, public transport will probably still not be able to operate with the same capacity as the pre-pandemic.
At this time, the various shared and on-demand mobility services should assume a leading role, acting as a supplement to the public transport system.
Companies with essential operations must depend on the displacement of their teams. Depending on the availability or quality of public transport at this time can be a risky decision.
As an example, companies such as PepsiCo and McDonald’s have adopted strategies to ensure their activities follow regularly despite this challenge. Solution spoiler? Transport by fully managed application.
Globally, the use of transport by applications has become a strong trend. As a safe, economical, and traceable alternative, several cities around the world have seen the demand for this service grow.
Micro mobility has also gained traction, not least because of its ability to maintain isolation and provide a comfortable experience for people. In New York, for example, the city’s bike share system (Citybike) saw a 67% increase in the number of trips in March. In Beijing, China, the increase was 150% in the same month.
With the sharing of information in real-time and the inclusion of new forms of payment, digital platforms integrate and facilitate access to various transport services, assuming a fundamental role in mobility management.
Through intelligence and data, platforms such as the market leader ProRido, called MaaS (Mobility as a Service), can combine different modes of transport in what is called a one-stop stop: regardless of the player and the chosen mode, payment is unified in a solution that centralizes the entire mobility process for large companies.
Communication and awareness
How to slow the spread of the new coronavirus? Perhaps the most needed point is everyone’s collaboration — including support for public and corporate awareness policies. This combination is extremely relevant and seems to be a great way out of this challenge.
Taking into account that 97% of the population already uses smartphones to access the Internet and social networks, once again, digital platforms demonstrate the ability to communicate closely and directly with passengers, which can have a great effect on the attitudes of people during their travels.
“Several companies are already working on communication fronts about the use of conscious transport in this period. Many have even created exclusive channels to report the health status of employees daily”, comments Jasbir D, ProRido’s commercial executive.
Through technology and in an intelligent way, it will be possible to create a transformation network so that mobility can coexist with the prevention measures currently in force.
How can you contribute to this awareness in your company?
ProRido promoted during July a series of short webinars with relevant information for users and transport managers.
With special guests, representatives of the main mobility applications in India shared the initiatives that were applied to ensure a high level of reliability in transport by applications.
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