TTC CEO lays out a series of objectives for the coming years, largely focused on customer service and shifting to a rider-centric management model.
“Our budgeting and estimating has to get exponentially better if we are to change our reputation… It’s not all about new equipment and flashy new lines. Our processes and systems are archaic, and our procedures impede progress in customer service. A major part of our plan will address people performance and cultural transformation. Decades’ old practices need to be swept away.”
—TTC CEO Andy Byford, in a lunchtime speech to the Empire Club today. Byford was there to lay out his five-year strategy for reforming the transit commission. The first year of his tenure, he said, was about “challenging mediocrity”; the next four years will see the implementation of a series of key objectives including a new safety management plan; a “customer-focused station business model”; a review of training programs “to ensure customer service and customer thinking runs throughout”; and perhaps most ambitiously, a program of “proactive service management…procedures that are customer-led rather than production led.” Byford said that he “will not accept that bunching of vehicles is inevitable, that the short-turning of vehicles is inevitable.” His goal, he went on, is that by the end of the five years people will say “we didn’t believe it would happen but the TTC has definitely changed.”
It was a strikingly blunt speech from the transit agency’s chief civil servant: Byford called on all of council to support the TTC as it embarks on this period of transition, both politically as well as with stable and increased funding. “The TTC simply cannot continue to accommodate millions more riders without an affordable increase in subsidy,” Byford warned.
The full text of his speech follows…