The Hauraki Gulf’s largest ferry company has launched a review of its operations aimed at improving its service.
Fullers360 carries more than five million commuters and visitors every year around the Hauraki Gulf.
“Overall,” says CEO Mike Horne, “our customers tell us we’re doing a good job. But we’ve heard loud and strong that some of our customers are unhappy with our services and this really concerns us. We realise we could listen better, and we are committed to doing that.”
A review of the company’s operations is looking at current staffing levels, scheduling, talking with crews and prioritising better customer communication on the wharves – all of which underpin maintaining stringent safety procedures.
Immediate steps include:
Creating a community voice – an open forum to enable the community to influence and contribute to the running of local services is being established.
Transparency of services – the Fullers team works hard to maintain Waiheke’s high-performance standards, but it hasn’t been sharing this information as well as it could with the community. Fullers is committed to changing this.
Critical infrastructure – working with local government is vital. It owns and controls the infrastructure on which all ferry services operate. Fullers has a role as an influencer and its customers’ input is essential. Action is underway for an improved ferry network. Customers and stakeholders will receive progress updates.
Investment in the fleet – in addition to the established three-year investment programme, Fullers recently invested a further $13m in purchasing two vessels. These vessels will enter the Waiheke and Devonport routes from August 2019 and will provide flexibility and scale for both. The company has committed to the R&D of full electric carbon fibre ferries, designed and built in New Zealand, with the aim of introducing them by 2021.