Bus, van and sedan transportation for Senior Living Homes
81% of adults in the US who are 65 and older still have their driver’s license. As age increases, the percentage of active drivers decreases. That’s because with age comes cognitive and physical changes that impact the ability to safely drive and navigate roads. Senior Living homes understand this problem and actively take steps to help their elderly residents find transportation who have lost their ability to drive. This could be through self-owned vehicles such as buses, vans, and sedans or through leveraging public volunteer driving programs or private transportation services. In most cases, a simple service is offered that will allow point-to-point services such as taking residents on a bus from the Home to the grocery store or other events. More complex services can include taking residents to many different places at many different times. We’ll take a look at some problems that frequently occur in these services and some potential solutions around them.
The most common method of requesting rides from residents is a call or a visit to the Resident Manager or Coordinator to schedule the ride. Typically all this large volume of requests is recorded by some paper method or simple spreadsheet and then provided to the driver. With staff already overloaded and in combination with lots of paper and not legible writing – mistakes inevitably occur. The impact is missed appointments by residents, more work to remedy the mistakes by staff, and an overall decrease in your transportation service efficiency. Allowing staff to access a booking system through a web-based PC, tablet and mobile app software such as SPEDSTA allows centralized and mistake-free booking. In combination with the ability to take ride requests in-person and via a centralized phone call system also allows those residents that are tech-savvy the ability to directly book their rides on their own through the SPEDSTA app.
So now you’ve got lots of rides requested ..now what? Depending upon what type of services you offer, SPEDSTA can help route and assign those rides to drivers and vehicles in less than a couple of clicks. In transportation lingo, the techniques to help here are called “fixed route” and “deviated route” ride scheduling. Here are some common scenarios we have seen:
- -you have a list of requested rides from residents that are going from the home to another common location. Enter those rides and assign them to a vehicle or driver in a couple of clicks with SPEDSTA’s Event Routing service.
- you have an event or trip that is requested by residents over multiple days. Those rides are booked in real-time and then when needing to assign them to a driver, in one click assign all those rides to a specific vehicle/driver using our Event Routing service.
- you have residents requesting rides to different places at different times. To best utilize your vehicle and driver capacity use SPEDSTA’s Smart Routing service that will optimize the vehicle/driver route and allow all residents to get to their destinations and come back on time. Using this service can save 30-40% in fuel and driver time.
Once routed and assigned to drivers/vehicles, the next task is to provide the necessary information and tools to the drivers so that they can perform their job. SPEDSTA’s driver tools allow this to happen with such features as GPS-driven location data, digital manifests, maintenance/inspection logs, communication tools with passengers, and handling exceptions/cancellations and additions to manifests in real-time. All this allows your drivers to make sure residents get to where they want to go on time and at the least cost to you.
Senior Living Homes have the daunting task to try to run critical and much-needed transportation services for their residents. Making it easy for your staff, residents, and drivers to schedule and manage those rides can happen with the right tools.