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31 CHAPTER FOUR RESOURCE REQUIREMENTS Responses to the questionnaire regarding the costs of provid- IT department was most often responsible for the deployment ing real-time information on mobile devices yielded limited of mobile real-time information, with customer service and information. Unfortunately, few respondents provided costs, marketing/communication as the next departments respon- indicating that the actual costs of providing real-time infor- sible for deployment. mation are not well known. Three respondents did provide information regarding the cost to the customer to receive one SMS message: Carris charges €0.30, STL charges $0.15 Canadian dollars, and Trafikanten AS charges 3 Norwegian krone. Through a brief Internet search, the cost of receiving one SMS was obtained for additional agencies, as follows: • For many customers, receiving and sending SMS messages are included in their monthly calling plan. For example, as of May 2010, Verizon Wireless and T-Mobile offered unlimited messaging as an add-on to a monthly voice plan for mobile devices (e.g., $20 per month for Verizon Wireless and $10 per month for T-Mobile in addition to the monthly voice charge). FIGURE 30 Percentage of survey respondents in which • For many customers, access to the mobile Internet can agency departments involved in deployment of mobile real- be included in their monthly calling plan by having a time information. data plan (e.g., unlimited access to the mobile Internet, mobile e-mail, and data downloading). For example, There was only one response to the question regarding the as of May 2010, Verizon Wireless offered an unlimited training requirements for each department/staff involved in data plan for $29.99 per month or 25 megabytes of data the deployment and use of mobile technology to provide real- for $9.99 per month. time information. This indicates that agencies deploying this • Dublin Bus charges €0.30 per message. technology do not understand the training requirements well. • Irish Rail charges €0.30 per message. • Metlink in Melbourne, Australia, charges $0.55 When asked about the labor hours spent by each depart- Australian dollars per message. ment/staff involved in the deployment and use of mobile • Singapore Public Transport charges $0.30 Singapore technology to provide real-time information, only four dollars. respondents offered an estimate, as shown in Table 6. • Leeds (UK) Traveler Information charges 25 pence per TABLE 6 premium rate response text for SMS. NUMBER OF LABOR HOURS PER MONTH PER AGENCY DEPARTMENT One hidden cost of providing real-time information Agency Name Number of Labor Hours per Month through SMS is the cost associated with obtaining a CSC. AC Transit • Marketing/Communication—5 An agency must establish an account with the CSCA and • Planning—5 apply for a specific CSC. Then “registering and leasing a • Customer Service—5 CSC costs $1,000 per month for each ‘Selected CSC’ (which MTC • Operations—30 could be numbers that match the agency’s name) and $500 per month for each ‘Random CSC.’ A CSC may be leased for STL • Information Technology—4 three, six, or 12 month terms” (60 ). • Operations—4 • Marketing/Communication—40 To determine the labor required to support providing real- • Customer Service—80 time information on mobile devices, the survey explored the TMovia • Information Technology—200 departments involved in deployment. As Figure 30 shows, the • Marketing/Communication—320
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32 Providing information on mobile devices has the potential less environment. However, agencies need to understand the to reduce the need for printed materials, thus saving the cost gaps in information provided by means of nonprinted mate- of printing and distributing these materials. For example, rials to ensure that a reduction in printed materials does not TriMet has drastically reduced the number of printed time- result in a lack of customer information. tables as part of its overall strategy to move toward a paper-