Analysis of the information behavior of BVB passengers. A qualitative survey
Society is in constant change and digitalization marched into the 21st century. It revolutionized and dramatically changed the way passengers gather travel information. In an effort to keep on par with changing customer needs the Basler Verkehrs-Betriebe asked the question: What information, when and where is desired by the typical BVB customers?
Fuhrmann Lara Alexa & Wyss Marc, 2019
Bachelor Thesis, Basler Verkehrs-Betriebe
Keywords: BVB, public transport, tram, bus, Basel, multi-channel customer, customer journey, information behavior, app, digital display
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The public transportation service Basler Verkehrs-Betriebe is a successful business based in the city of Basel and established in 1895. The ability for people to move around and thus, their compliant needs have developed with time. As people became more mobile, their needs transformed, and today almost everyone has developed a need for public transport. Similarly, the demographics that use these services have changed significantly into a collection of more heterogeneous international, and social groups. Therefore, the service has to be efficient and satisfactory. Being one of the few public transportation providers in Basel has supplied the Basler Verkehrs-Betriebe (BVB) with a large customer base. For this reason, the BVB would like to augment their knowledge of customers as well as their information behavior. To keep up with customers’ expectations and technological advances, the BVB needs to adapt its information channels and carriers. Therefore, the authors conducted fifteen qualitative interviews and analyzed them to acquire answers to BVB’s seeking questions.
First off, the authors researched theories and frameworks, which could be applied to answer questions of information behavior of public transportation passengers. Then a Kick-off meeting was held to present this research and the established ideas and discuss the client's wishes in further detail. Once receiving a more detailed overview of the client's objectives, an interview questionnaire was established. After the conclusion of an iterative process that incorporated client feedback, the questions were finalized, and interviews were conducted to gain relevant qualitative input. After a pilot phase and about half way through the interviews, a Status-report meeting was held to discuss the progress and the possible adaptions. Then began the deep research, analysis, and compilation phase of the interviews and findings whereby Mayring’s qualitative content analysis was applied. Multiple models and frameworks were used to explain the passenger’s behavior. Firstly, the customer’s journey is a crucial model to engage with the customers and a key to understanding their behavior. Secondly, technological development has changed the consumer’s preferences and created the multi-channel customer. This has not only changed their behavior, but also their needs and desires of what services should provide. Moreover, information behavior portrays why and how consumer’s think the way they do. The Big Five personality test was used to examine the Basler interviewees’ information behavior on the basis of their personality traits. And finally, the net promoter score shows a measurement of the passenger’s satisfaction and recommendation for the information channels and carriers. These topics are seen to be the main factors relevant to the clients goals and understanding them will lead to more successful performance.
The authors established an adapted customer journey based on the results of the interviews. Furthermore, an adapted Wilson model of information behavior was combined with the customer journey to display the passenger’s information behavior. To create a deeper understanding of the model, the authors described a hypothetical scenario with a fictional character. In regard to effort and feasibility for the results, the authors completed the project with a structured conclusion, including the summary of findings, recommendations, and future outlook. Clearly the significance of strong communication and clear navigation available to passengers is undeniable. A distinct trend can be observed, whereby passengers want to use new communication channels including the most modern technologies. Hence, recommendations included improving the BVB mobile application, adapting the distribution of ticket vending machines and educating the customer to new technologies. At last, more quantitative research was suggested.
Studiengang: Business Administration International Management (Bachelor)
Fachbereich der Arbeit: Strategie, Marketing & Kommunikation