Letter from Tan Kin Lian in Today Paper
In the search for its new chief executive, I urge SMRT Corporation's board of directors to find a person who understands and is able to realise these immediate and long-term goals:
- Ensure the smooth running of its current operations
- Use technology to improve communication with commuters in the stations and outside
- Improve the current system of receiving and resolving customer feedback and issues
- Achieve a balance between its commercial goals and providing a comfortable, affordable public transport service
- Develop a complementary system to its rail operations and reduce the impact caused by any unexpected failure
The first three priorities can be implemented immediately, while the last two may take longer, but their importance has to be recognised.
On the matter of a complementary system, SMRT should run express bus services between the bus interchanges next to its train stations. These buses should not pick up passengers enroute.
This could complement the trains, especially during peak hours, allowing commuters to be familiar with this service. More buses could be deployed during emergencies and train breakdowns.
I give my best wishes to the board and the new CEO in the challenging task of remoulding SMRT to reattain the service standards that Singaporeans had long been proud of until now.
Tan Kin Lian