NXTS growing diversity with recruitment of operator partners

Interest in National Express Transport Solutions high as operator aims to scale network

National Express Transport Solutions (NXTS) was at Euro Bus Expo recruiting for a wide variety of coaching work that it is seeking to sub-contract out to partner operators. Its ambition is to scale its own businesses while enriching its coach operator partners.

NXTS hopes to build its operator database to ensure more diversity in its operator force, owing to specific requirements of customers, while addressing the national driver shortage issue. Service Delivery Manager Jodi Eede explains that the group is offering a route to build operators up from entry-level private hire work to scheduled network services. NXTS has also been building stronger partnerships with its existing operators, talking through how it can help build their businesses and integrate new technology.

“Some of our customers have really specific requirements and operators have lots of different niches, so it’s great to have that wide variety and to be able to just make those partnerships stronger and bring the coach industry back to its former glory after COVID-19, working more collaboratively as an industry,” she says. “Demand is high for all types of coaching– both scheduled services and private hire. But drivers are still low. That’s why we are trying to structure our operator network – it means we have to workharder to cover demand.

”Safety is the main focus for new operator members. “We’re looking for operators that have similar safety values to National Express, because safety is at the heart of and at the forefront of everythingthat we do,” says Ms Eede, who says the aim is to work “with partner operators that have that same thought process that safety comes first, and operators that want to provide a quality service at a great price – and that want to be busy.”

Interest at Euro Bus Expo has been high, with NXTS taking details for some 30 new operators.