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Payment Solutions for GA

Abellio Greater Anglia extend PayMe Mobile pilot to whole rail network to leverage maximum efficiencies and savings

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What was required:

Abellio Greater Anglia were looking for a penalty fare payment solution that would work within its patchy mobile signal area and meet the latest PCI DSS regulations for mobile payments.

Finding a seamless solution for both passengers and ticket inspectors was a chief requirement, alongside a system that could be seamlessly integrated into their existing platforms.

What we did:

ITAL worked with Abellio Greater Anglia to fully understand their needs and network constraints to implement a system that would be fully supported by staff as well as bring efficiencies.

For example, in the first instance, ITAL project specialists spent time on the network identifying the best mobile operator to partner with for best uninterrupted service on a rural and patchy network.

With service improvements and PCI DSS compliance already secured, the PayMe Web service was particularly attractive to Abellio Greater Anglia because it introduced an integrated payment solution into their penalty fare system.

Unlike many current rail industry ticket issuing solutions, where penalty fare payments are separate from ticket issuing systems, PayMe is a fully integrated solution.

This means that PayMe facilitates the payment of a penalty fare in one seamless transaction. Greater Anglia customers can now pay and receive a single receipt for a penalty fare (no more orange stock tickets and separate receipts) while inspectors can complete a penalty fare transaction using one device, one app and one printer. Previously inspectors had to employ both penalty fare issuing equipment and ticket issuing equipment to print a customer receipt.

ITAL introduced a 7 inspector pilot on the Greater Anglia network in August 2017. The inspectors were equipped with a fit for purpose, small, lightweight device with high speed memory, which was immediately appreciated for its efficiency and design.

The PayMe app quickly proved faster and more efficient, particularly in areas of patchy mobile signal. It also brought additional customer benefits. The pilot resulted in an additional confidence by the paying public. The PayMe Mobile system offers chip & pin or contactless payments which means the passenger can see the payment being taken and, critically, never loses sight of their card; previous systems needed the card to be handed over for the inspector to put in the information. Together with a speedier transaction and immediate receipt, passengers were satisfied with a seamless process.

During the busy V Festival 2017 period, Greater Anglia reported that PayMe made taking payments 3 times faster at Chelmsford train station; one of the busiest transport links to the festival site.

Working with Greater Anglia to iron out any teething problems and further tailor the system and reporting, the system was rolled out across the network to all 156 inspectors in February 2018.

Training took place over one month with ITAL specialists and 10-15 inspectors at a time. Training took inspectors from initial set up to test payments and covered on-going use and questions.

In addition, ITAL introduced a remote support system meaning the ITAL Product Support Team are now on standby to remotely support the inspectors as they get used to the new system. The remote team can access the device and provide immediate support.

We found the PAYME device to be good for our inspectors as it saved time and provided a secure and quick way to take funds from customers paying for penalty fares etc. It became something we rolled out to all our inspectors.

Kim Bucknell, Head of Revenue Protection at Abellio Greater Anglia

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  • The initial pilot was rolled out across the entire Great Anglia network in February 2018
  • Payments were 3 times faster using PayMe Mobile, bringing efficiencies and giving inspectors extra time in the day
  • Pilot and subsequent roll out was seamless, supported by ITAL senior management and a dedicated remote support team
  • The client is encouraged by the future potential of the scheme, for ticket sales for point to point ticket issuing
  • Greater Anglia inspector and union rep endorsed the system as a preferred solution to complement the issuing of penalty fares
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