Abellio and Cubic Win at the SmartRail Europe Innovation Awards

Posted on in Members' News

UK: Abellio Greater Anglia, a subsidiary of transport provider Abellio Group, and Cubic Transportation Systems (CTS), a business unit of Cubic Corporation, has been awarded ‘Product Innovation of the Year’ at the SmartRail Europe Innovation Awards 2016. The award, announced April 19 in Amsterdam, recognises the best and most innovative products in the rail and metro industry.

CTS created NextAgent, an innovative hybrid between a virtual walk-up ticket office, a ticket vending machine and a video-linked call centre, which has been trialled at Stansted Airport in partnership with Abellio Group. Since the introduction of NextAgent in October 2015, it has received overwhelmingly positive reviews from users, citing the ease of use and a secure and service-oriented customer experience.

Not only does the NextAgent technology provide a virtual ticket office in remote locations and areas where there is limited space for a full ticket office, it is also an important customer information point. The NextAgent operators are on hand to remotely answer customer questions, provide advice about best fares and reassure passengers about their onward travel. The ability to provide this service is fundamental to the high importance that Abellio place on customer experience. An additional benefit of introducing NextAgent technology is that it can help ease congestion at stations.

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Jeremy Whitaker, Head of Commercial Development at Abellio, said: “Achieving the Product Innovation Award reinforces the positive reaction from our passengers. Our survey showed that 92 per cent of users felt they would benefit from a ticket machine like NextAgent. We are thrilled that this new service has been recognised for providing an innovative and enhanced customer experience, offering a seamless door-to-door journey, at Stansted Airport.”

Roger Crow, CTS-Europe Executive Vice President and Managing Director, said: “We are equally as thrilled to receive this recognition in partnership with Abellio, with whom we are working side-by-side to trial what they consider an efficient and qualified solution for assisting their passengers arriving at Stansted, en route from plane to train and their final destination. This demonstrates our goal of understanding customer requirements and delivering a technology solution that meets our customers’ need for enhancing their traveller’s experience.”

Abellio Award