Revenue Control Survey
Some Surprises Turn up in Revenue Control SurveyTwo revenue control systems: One locks up weekly, the other never has a problem. One exceeds expectations in virtually every area, the other's comments reflected deep disappointment. The surprise? Same equipment, same software, same application.
At this writing, the revenue control survey held by Parking Today and Chance Management Advisors over the past few months is in its final compilation in preparation for its review at the Parking Industry Exhibition to be held in early April.
However, a preliminarily review of the numbers and comments shows that although most respondents had their expectations met by the equipment, a large majority feels that the aftermarket service was lacking. Much of the concern centered on training (or lack of) from installing companies or manufacturers.
What struck survey reviewers most was the fact that exactly the same system could be lauded in one location, and lambasted almost into extinction at another.
One parking concern expressed deep satisfaction with a product, up to and including training, support and the software.
In a like location 1,000 miles away, another operation's quote when asked what changes he would make was, "I would junk the whole system and get a new set up." As mentioned above, this was the same manufacturer, same software, same relative age and equipment.
There were a couple of major differences. In the one case, the owner received the system as part of a general construction bid and was not involved in the selection process. In the other, the owner was intimately involved in specifying the system. In one case the owner felt the system was "shoved" on him, in the other, the owner embraced the system and worked with it.
The vast majority of respondents would like more attentive service. When they come out they should fix it. Many of those most satisfied with their equipment did their own first level maintenance and repair.
It was also evident that those most satisfied did their homework before the bid and then selected a "preferred vendor" for their system. It didn't matter which vendor was selected. When an owner knew what they were buying, had their expectations set at a reasonable level and then purchased that equipment, they were satisfied and comfortable with their result.
However when they simply wrote a performance specification, went out to bid, selected the low bidder (or had another party select the bidder) then began to work with the equipment, they were dissatisfied.
It didn't matter what equipment was purchased.
Surveys came in from airports, operators, universities, cities and hospitals. Most were medium-size operations (1,000 to 5,000 spaces) but a few were very large (more than 10,000 spaces). The majority stated that their software and hardware ran at least as well as the other systems in their facility (elevators, air conditioning or desktop software).
A final report will be available in late April on both Parking Today's and Chance Management Advisor's Web sites (www.parkingtoday.com or www.chancemanagement.com).