Perth-based Stagecoach, the UK’s biggest bus operator, has announced plans to create 80 jobs at a new customer contact centre in its home city.
Stagecoach employs 24,000 people and operates 8,300 buses, coaches and trams around the UK.
“The new one-stop phone and digital contact point for customers will be based at the company’s existing headquarters in the city and is planned to open in spring 2022,” said Stagecoach.
“The new multi-skilled team will operate an improved seven-day a week service from the launch of the new centre, and will move to fully extended opening hours on weekdays and weekends within the year.
“It will provide one easy point of contact that customers can use to speak to a member of the Stagecoach team on any queries they have, including questions about timetables, feedback on services, help with smartcards and lost property.
“Customers will also be able to buy tickets directly through the new shared service contact centre.
“Major investment is being made in a new customer relationship management system to help provide tailored support, better understand customers’ end-to-end journeys, and quickly address any emerging common issues.
“The search is now underway for a new lead to manage the centre, with customer advisor job roles expected to be advertised in the autumn.”
Stagecoach CEO Martin Griffiths said: “At a time when many parts of our economy have been hit hard by the pandemic, we are delighted to be able to open this new facility and create new employment opportunities.
“We were founded in Perth four decades ago and are proud to have retained our headquarters in the city ever since.
“Perth gives us access to high-quality, skilled employees and we hope the new customer contact centre will provide a way into the world of work for individuals from a range of backgrounds, including young people.
“There is a huge opportunity to attract people to more sustainable public transport in the years ahead as national governments look to move to net zero. Delivering the best experience to every single customer is central to helping people make the switch away from cars to public transport.
“The central contact point will allow us to provide extended opening hours so we’re there to support our customers when and how they need us.”
Perth and Kinross Council leader Murray Lyle said: “This is a tremendous vote of confidence in Perth and Kinross and our highly skilled workforce.
“Stagecoach has a long history in Perth and it is heartening to see its commitment to the city remains as strong as ever.
“Not only will these 80 jobs create opportunities for our people and help us recover from the economic impact of the Coronavirus pandemic, they will also support the move towards sustainable travel across the UK.”
Perthshire Chamber of Commerce CEO Vicki Unite said: “This will come as a great boost for the region’s economy after a difficult 16 months during the pandemic. It’s a huge vote of confidence in our skills base in Perthshire and will provide some valuable new opportunities for the region.
“With the full re-opening on 9 August, we are now all looking ahead at re-building our local economy. This investment by Stagecoach will help to lock in spend with our community and will have a positive knock-on effect for many other local businesses.”
Carla Stockton-Jones, UK Managing Director for Stagecoach, said: “This is a clear demonstration of our commitment to providing the best possible service to customers.
“Our major investment in a dedicated new customer contact centre will allow us to provide a significantly improved service, and our highly-skilled and trained team will have all the latest information on our services and UK-wide network at their finger-tips to be able to quickly help our customers.
“There is a huge opportunity to attract people to more sustainable public transport in the years ahead as national governments look to move to net zero.
“Delivering the best experience to every single customer is central to helping people make the switch away from cars to public transport.
“The new central contact point will allow us to provide extended opening hours and a seven day service so we’re there to support our customers when and how they need us.”