Category: OmniDAS

Blackpool Transport streamlining processes with Omnibus’ complete cloud solution

James Clough, Blackpool Transport, which will implement Omnibus' cloud solution

12 October 2023 – Blackpool Transport will improve and streamline processes by moving its Omnibus scheduling and depot allocation software to the cloud solution.

The upgrade to the cloud solution will provide greater computing power to drive operational efficiency and reduce costs on a secure, reliable and resilient platform.

James Clough, Blackpool Transport, which will implement Omnibus' cloud solution

The scheduling suite will allow seamless collaboration on timetabling, mapping, vehicle scheduling, crew scheduling, rostering, timetable publicity and data sharing, and improved file management.

Depot allocation solution, OmniDAS, will provide complete visibility of all driver and vehicle resources from one central platform, which can integrate with other control room systems to increase productivity by removing duplicate tasks.

New driver app, OmniENGAGE, will also be implemented to improve driver communication and reduce administration around shift swaps and holiday and overtime requests.

James Clough, Commercial & Finance Director at Blackpool Transport, said: “Our goal is to provide first-class tram and bus services to Blackpool using dynamic solutions designed with the UK bus industry in mind.

“Omnibus has been an important partner for us for many years. By deepening our collaboration, we will benefit from even better resources than before. We will be better placed to improve service levels and ensure that our systems continue to meet the needs of our customers and teams in an ever-changing operating environment.”

Peter Crichton, Founder of Omnibus, said: “We are delighted to support Blackpool Transport with our full cloud solution. Our cloud applications meet the latest internet security standards, and we manage all updates centrally, so customers always have the most up-to-date version of our applications.

“We have a proud track record of delivering innovative solutions for operators of all sizes. Our combination of software, data, consultancy, insight and expertise mean we are uniquely placed to ensure operators can address their business challenges and grasp the opportunities for tomorrow.”


Blackpool Transport:

Omnibus Solutions:

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Harminder Sangha
07538 935 568

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Podcast – Do you have a holistic view of your bus operation?

Do you have a holistic view of your bus operation?

As an operations manager, you might not have the time to be fully versed in all your control room systems, but you want a holistic view of your bus operation.​ OmniDAS, our depot allocation solution for real-time driver and vehicle management, and EPM Insights, a powerful management information solution, together provide complete transparency over your operations. Find out more in the podcast.

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Vision for streamlined operations with new solutions driving efficiency

London bus. Vision for streamlined operations with solutions driving efficiency

22 September 2023 – EPM and Omnibus are dedicated to enhancing operator efficiency with new solutions.

In the dynamic world of public transport, where efficiency, reliability, and data-driven decision-making are paramount, Velociti Group companies EPM and Omnibus, are making significant strides to transform industry processes. With a rich legacy spanning over three decades, the companies are at the forefront of providing innovative solutions to this complex sector.

Nick Brookes, Software Director at EPM and Omnibus, believes that the companies’ commitment to driving operational efficiency and boosting patronage is evident in their approach to product development with enhancements to existing solutions and plans for a new product – Control360 – which aims to revolutionise service delivery.

Article featured in the Passenger Transport supplement for CPT Scotland Conference 2023.

Evolution of control room solutions

In early 2021, EPM acquired Omnibus, a leading transport software company. Since then, EPM has been working to integrate their solutions to provide more value to customers. Nick emphasises the need to bridge digital capability gaps.

“In the intricate bus operations landscape, effective management is crucial for reliable, high-quality, passenger-focussed services,” he explains. “Our focus on integrating the OmniDAS depot allocation system with our existing operator control room tools marks significant progress. This cloud-based SaaS solution provides operators with real-time visibility of driver and vehicle resources, streamlining resource management and ensuring compliance with regulations and local agreements.”

In a world where operators are increasingly focusing on driver retention and engagement, Nick highlights Omnibus’ innovative driver smartphone app, OmniENGAGE, which fosters improved communication with drivers, boosts driver retention, and facilitates efficient allocation of resources by offering a self-service function that takes the pressure away from depot-based allocation teams.

That self-service system has also been expanded to offer an automated sign-on facility for drivers. Rather than signing on for work at a front desk in a depot, they can instead sign on for work remotely using the app. Geofencing technology ensures accurate tracking of the driver’s location, enhancing operational oversight.

Real-time decision making with OmniDAS

OmniDAS is a cloud-native platform designed to support on-the-day operations with real-time decision-making capabilities for control room staff. It enables operators to swiftly adapt to unforeseen challenges such as driver shortages and unexpected incidents. This semi-automated system ensures that any changes made during the day are accurately logged and processed, providing a single source of truth for payroll and HR records.

Nick highlights EPM’s Insights solution. It complements OmniDAS by offering comprehensive data analysis tools that help identify trends and issues, fostering proactive decision-making and improved service quality.

“This holistic approach to operational efficiency encompasses both planning and execution, ensuring that meticulous pre-planning translates into passenger satisfaction,” he adds.

Control360: a vision for comprehensive service delivery

While Omnibus is enhancing OmniDAS, EPM is developing Control360. It will provide operators with a comprehensive 360-degree view by unifying disparate data sources.

“Critical decisions are frequently made in the control room, and Control360 will facilitate data sharing, enabling operators to uphold their promises of delivering reliable and quality bus services,” revealed Nick. “By consolidating data from various applications, including third-party sources and open data, Control360 will present operators with actionable insights and early warning alerts, reducing the reliance on gut-feel decisions and fostering data-driven operations.”

One key advantage of Control360 is its seamless integration with existing EPM and Omnibus solutions, such as OmniDAS, Customer Resolution Centre and Accident Management systems. This integration streamlines processes, removes data silos, and ensures consistency.

“Control360’s future roadmap includes plans to assess the financial implications of operational changes, helping control room staff make informed decisions that not only improve service quality but also make financial sense,” adds Nick. “This proactive approach will ensure that bus operators are equipped to handle a fast-paced and complex environment effectively.”

A glimpse into the future

EPM and Omnibus are advancing their journey to provide data-driven bus industry solutions. OmniDAS is available, and integration with the EPM Traffic system is complete. The upcoming Control360, though still in development, is set to be a game-changer by consolidating crucial information, ultimately boosting bus service quality and reliability.

As they prepare for a phased launch for Control360 in early 2024, Nick believes operators can look forward to a future where data-driven decisions and efficient resource allocation – backed by improved communication – are the pillars of success.

“Our view is that for operators to be successful there are two sides to the equation,” he concludes. “The first is to become more operationally efficient and the other is in growing patronage and therefore revenue.

“We want to empower operators with data-driven tools that respond to those challenges by optimising resource allocation and responding swiftly to issues. This not only improves service quality but also fosters growth in patronage, ultimately boosting revenue as operators deliver on their promises to passengers and build a reputation for service reliability and quality.”

Building an efficient bus operation

Measuring end-to-end performance

Tram Operations selects Omnibus cloud scheduling and allocation solutions

Tram Operations selects Omnibus cloud scheduling and allocation solutions

14 September 2023 – Tram Operations Limited has re-partnered with Omnibus to implement new cloud solutions for future-proofing its scheduling and operations activities.

The FirstGroup-owned operator will adopt cloud-based timetabling, vehicle scheduling, crew scheduling and rostering to increase efficiency, flexibility and collaboration.

Tram Operations selects Omnibus cloud scheduling and allocation solutions

Operational efficiency will be achieved with cloud-native depot allocation solution OmniDAS and driver app OmniENGAGE. OmniDAS optimises resources and reduces administration with real-time driver and vehicle management, data feeds to HR, payroll and operations, and automated sign-on. OmniENGAGE provides drivers with greater flexibility to view and manage their work.

Ben Groome, Operations Director, Tram Operations Ltd

Ben Groome, Operations Director at Tram Operations Ltd, said: “After extensive market research, we identified Omnibus’ industry experience, evolving software and unmatched customer service were attributes that we were looking for in a partner to support our digitalisation.

“The Omnibus modern, flexible and scalable suite of cloud solutions will enable us to improve efficiencies in our schedule planning and service delivery, allowing us to benefit from innovative technology to transform our operations.”

Peter Crichton, Founder of Omnibus, said: “With a track record of over thirty years of providing operators with innovative solutions, Omnibus is proud to partner once again with Tram Operations Ltd. We are looking forward to supporting them in making their digital transformation a success.”

Tram Operations Ltd is the operator of Tramlink on behalf of Transport for London (TfL), providing inter-urban, cross-borough services in Southwest London for customers travelling between Wimbledon and New Addington or Beckenham Junction and Elmers End to Croydon. With over 22 million passenger journeys a year and operating over 4,200 services each week, it is one of the busiest networks in the country.


Press contact
Harminder Sangha
07538 935 568

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Podcast – Still sharing operational information by phone or email?

Still sharing operational information by phone or email

Depot controllers and engineers rely on each other for operational information yet communication between them can be poor or slow because they communicate by phone or email.​ By not being able to communicate effectively, poor decisions are often made which result in higher costs for the operator.​

OmniDAS, our cloud-native depot allocation solution for real-time driver and vehicle management, seamlessly integrates with other systems, such as engineering, allowing teams to work more effectively and increase their operational efficiency. Find out more in the podcast.

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Podcast – Are you re-keying operational data?

Does your control room rekey operational data

Passenger transport operators use several control room systems to record information on lost mileage, absences, customer feedback, accidents, and monitoring punctuality and reliability. Each operational action may also require a record to be made or updated in another system/s. The challenge for operators is that the majority of these systems work independently, which leads to inefficient and error-prone re-keying of operational data.

OmniDAS, our cloud-native depot allocation solution for real-time driver and vehicle management, seamlessly integrates with other systems, which means data is only entered once without duplication!​ This streamlines workflows and gives operators more time to manage the network and resolve issues faster. Find out more in the podcast.

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Podcast – Are your allocation systems siloed?

Are your allocation systems siloed

Does your bus operation have multiple depots with each depot using a separate instance of their allocation software? If so, those depots are working in silos and this creates a challenge sharing resources between depots and as a result decisions take longer, and costs can go up.​

OmniDAS, our depot allocation platform, allows you to bring all those silos under a single umbrella to share driver resources across depots, work remotely and collaborate on tasks, and maintain a single source of truth. Find out more in the podcast.

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CT4N selects Omnibus cloud solutions to realise efficiency savings

CT4N selects Omnibus cloud solutions to realise efficiency savings

19 July 2023 – CT4N Charitable Trust, a Nottingham-based community transport operator, has selected Omnibus cloud solutions for scheduling and depot allocation as part of its digitalisation to boost growth. 

The operator will replace manual processes with the Omnibus Scheduling Suite to produce efficient timetables and schedules; OmniDAS for real-time driver and vehicle management and to deliver services safely and legally whilst minimising costs; and driver app OmniENGAGE to improve communication with drivers.

CT4N selects Omnibus cloud solutions to realise efficiency savings

The move will enable CT4N to realise efficiency savings with secure and flexible cloud solutions as it seeks out fresh commercial opportunities to maintain a host of valuable community services. 

Nigel Eggleton, CT4N

Nigel Eggleton, Commercial Director at CT4N, which provides commercial and contracted bus services across Nottingham, Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire, said: “Our customers rely on us to increase their accessibility and mobility by connecting them to where they need to go.

“To meet those expectations, we are delighted to partner with Omnibus to drive efficiencies as well as allow us to boost areas that are raising revenue to support the work of the charity.” 

Peter Crichton, Founder of Omnibus, said: “Whether the goal is to improve efficiencies around timetabling, allocation of drivers or produce accurate payroll outputs, we work side-by-side with operators of all sizes and vital community organisations, like CT4N, to enable them to achieve their growth strategies.” 



Omnibus Solutions:

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Harminder Sangha
07538 935 568

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Omnibus and EPM aim for innovation in the efficiency chain

EPM Group aims for innovation in the efficiency chain

Velociti Group aims to support bus operators as they grapple with uncertainties.

It’s a challenging time for bus operators with continuing uncertainties surrounding future funding, the building back of patronage following the Covid-19 pandemic, driver shortages and increasing traffic congestion.

Many are placing their operations and networks under the microscope, but software solutions specialist Velociti Group (EPM Bus Solutions and Omnibus Solutions) believes the answer to many of the problems created by these complex issues can be found by focusing on improving efficiencies and streamlining processes.

EPM Group aims for innovation in the efficiency chain

Article featured in the Passenger Transport supplement for UK Bus & Coach 2023

“We’ve been working very closely on the efficiency chain,” says Nick Brookes, software director at EPM and Omnibus. “We are looking at the complete range of interactions that take place in any bus operator to see how we can help them realise savings and become even more agile.”

The focus of EPM and Omnibus is on realising efficiencies by creating an integrated operational platform. The key components of this vision are drivers and depot allocation, customer services and accidents, and engineering processes.

“We want the data and processes from each of those stages to talk to one another,” explains Nick. “Bus operators create huge amounts of data, but a lot of it is lost in translation. We want to take the data and translate it into information that enables bus operators to become more efficient.”

Helping with driver retention

Driver and vehicle allocation has been a key focus for the group. The Omnibus depot allocation system, OmniDAS, for real-time driver and vehicle management has been enhanced with a move to the cloud and the addition of a smartphone app that creates a complete self-service system for drivers to manage their working life. This includes the ability to offer remote sign-on facility, meaning drivers don’t even have to visit their home depot to sign on for work each day.

Nick BrookesNick believes the sum of these parts is a system that can assist operators to improve their driver retention goals, an important development at a time when much of the industry is struggling with shortages.

“It can really help drivers manage their home life while ensuring they are informed and connected with their colleagues,” he explains. “They can see their shift patterns, apply for overtime, swap their shifts – in other words, they don’t have to go to a front desk or speak to someone. There’s still oversight of what’s going on, but it becomes a back-office process. It makes things more efficient for everyone.”

Nick reveals there are plans to build on this self-service approach. A new bulletin board system within the app aims to supplement the traditional depot noticeboard, allowing staff to review important company information on the go.

Further enhancements are likely to see the app integrated into EPM’s accident management systems, in other words, drivers will be able to record vital details and evidence in the immediate aftermath of an accident. And on that EPM plans to later this year improve its accident reporting solution with new features that will assist operators in tracking accidents from when they happened right through to closure and then analysis afterwards. Nick adds this will allow operators to scrutinise insights that will help them drive down the possibility of a similar accident reoccurring.

Integrating systems

Those plans to integrate the app and accident reporting hint at other aspirations. Nick is keen to evolve EPM and Omnibus solutions into an expanded platform that helps bus operators realise efficiencies. He describes this as being about creating a “single source of truth”.

“What we want to do is create outputs for operators that offer a good, accurate and consistent overview,” he adds. “We want to streamline workflows and integrate them across the business.”

Nick highlights the operations platform elements of EPM’s offering. “Our Customer Resolution Centre is integrated into that,” he explains. “We wanted it to work harder to help operators rebuild patronage and it’s an area where some operators have struggled in the past.”

While other systems are about logging these interactions, EPM’s platform aims to be more proactive in addressing them. It can automatically consolidate customer feedback from multiple sources to produce a complete overview of customer interactions.

“It means operators can respond to customers quickly and efficiently from a range of platforms, including social media,” adds Nick. “Downstream processes, such as creating feedback forms from the staff involved or evidence requests are automated. It’s about resolving the issue quickly and creating a consolidated view of the entire process.”

Another example of that integration is in engineering systems. While EPM has no plans to create an engineering solution of its own, it is working with third-party providers to ensure systems ‘talk’ to one another in order to streamline processes.

Nick says a good example is if a vehicle is off-road for repair: the engineering system will talk with EPM’s systems to ensure the depot allocation system (OmniDAS) knows that the vehicle can’t be allocated for work for that day. It means that telephone calls or potentially unreliable paper-based methods between engineering and operations departments are avoided and there’s also the advantage that the entire process is automated.

Tying it all together

A big focus for some time for the EPM and Omnibus product team has been on control room processes.

“Our BIRS (Bus Incident Reporting Screen) solution enables operators to work flexibly and efficiently, but we want to expand on that,” explains Nick. “A lot of information already flows into and out of the operator’s control room, and we want to consolidate that data into a single dashboard. This is a key focus for us because it will allow control room staff to make more informed and proactive decisions.”

He adds that this process will take disparate systems out of their silos, consolidate them and then use historical data to allow operators to determine trends.

“Efficiency is a big focus for us this year,” Nick concludes.

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Grow patronage, boost revenue, and drive operational efficiency.

Reading Buses adopts Omnibus cloud solutions

Reading Buses - cloud solutions

1 March 2023 – Reading Buses is building on its relationship with Omnibus by migrating its scheduling and operations software to the cloud and implementing a new driver app to improve communication.

The operator will move its timetabling, mapping, vehicle scheduling, rostering and data sharing software to a cloud-based scheduling platform to allow for seamless collaboration on jobs, increase accuracy and gain enhanced reporting capabilities.

Reading Buses - cloud solutions

Its depot allocation system, OmniDAS, will be upgraded to the cloud-native version of the solution, enabling the operator to work holistically across all its operations and report on depots individually and as a collective.

Linked to OmniDAS cloud, the operator will implement driver app OmniENGAGE. This will enable Reading Buses to provide its drivers with the ability to submit holiday requests, shift swaps and overtime requests along with an option to push out communication from the business.

Together, the cloud solutions will eliminate infrastructure costs and provide the capabilities Reading Buses needs to streamline processes on a secure and flexible platform.

Laurence Jenkins, Reading Buses

Laurence Jenkins, Finance Director at Reading Buses, said: “Omnibus systems already play a critical role in ensuring we deliver reliable services cost-effectively.

“Adopting the cloud-based solutions will enable council-owned Reading Buses to continue working towards delivering on our priorities such as reducing car dependency for visitors and residents and making buses the best and easiest choice to get around.

“We are excited and proud to extend our partnership with Omnibus and look forward to increased levels of transparency and accountability across the operation.”

Reading Buses operates over 140 buses and delivers 66,000 passenger journeys each day across the county of Berkshire and extending into Oxfordshire and Hampshire as well as parts of Greater London.

Peter Crichton, Founder of Omnibus, said: “We are thrilled to be building on our relationship with Reading Buses, providing them with more solutions to further improve the efficiencies of their business. At Omnibus we are always looking for ways to improve our solutions and implement the latest technology to enable operators of all sizes to make better-informed decisions about their network.”


Reading Buses:

Omnibus Solutions:

Press contact
Harminder Sangha
07538 935 568

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