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Helping Riders Navigate Change

Renae Houston, Northeast Operations Coordinator, takes a call to schedule a trip for a rider.

Change is hard. In fact, it’s one of the hardest things to go through in life. Humans are creatures of habit and routine so adjusting to changes can be difficult. For our company to grow and succeed, we had to seek improvements to our service delivery model. This is exactly what our new scheduling software, Ecolane, has offered. We understand this change has been harder on some than others, but we are all making the adjustments together!

Looking at the bigger picture, in just one day in March, we performed 4,010 trips with a 90% or higher performance rate. For us, it speaks volumes to our efficient service. The words echoed in our mission and our culture “safe, caring & reliable” remain the top priorities to our riders, staff and contracting agencies. These numbers only include 53 of the 87 counties using the software; we still have 34 more counties remaining to go live on the new system. As we head into spring, 75% of our service area is running on the new scheduling and dispatching software. The remaining 25% will be on the new system before mid-May.

Speaking of performance rates, on that same day, we had 285 no-shows. No-shows are when a driver goes to pick up a rider, but the rider didn’t call to tell us they weren’t riding, so it was an unnecessary trip. This can be avoided by calling our office ahead of time to cancel the trip. This becomes costly to our company, and in the long-run, means we can perform less service. Keep in mind that OATS Transit is a shared-ride transportation system, not a taxi. Please be kind to your fellow riders by simply calling the office to let us know if you have a change of plans. We want to be able to offer more travel options for you, but we cannot do that without your help!

Jim Stec, Vice-President Business Development at Ecolane, welcomed OATS Transit to the Ecolane family with confidence that performance results would speak for themselves. He said that we will be able to accommodate more riders without adding additional expenses.

“It is going to be a win-win for all involved,” Stec said. “Ecolane is proud to partner with OATS Transit and to have a partner that is willing to make the necessary, difficult operational changes that will enhance its customer service, not just for today but for the future of its riders.”

Other than calling a your local region office phone number to schedule, the only other aspect that may be different for some is how to pay. You can find out more information about your payment options on the next page.

It has been a yearlong process to phase in all of our service area in Missouri and it has been a long journey. As we move forward to ensure we grow in a more efficient manner, we thank all of you for adjusting to the changes along with us. We are nearing 50 years in business, and the best is yet to come. Thank you for coming along for the ride!


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