Themes: Performance of ITS application; Performance of targeted transport functions; Impact on other transport functions

Approach to performance monitoring

Performance monitoring consists of three main strands:

  • Measuring technical performance against the technical and functional specification – i.e. has the supplier delivered the ITS system as per contract?
  • Measuring effectiveness of the ITS in achieving the targeted functions – i.e. does the ITS system help the organisational and operational units to achieve their objectives?
  • Does the ITS implementation have other impacts (positive or not) on other areas of the business?

Strand 1: Is the ITS system performing in line with the contract?

The first level of performance monitoring that is required is that of the ITS system against its technical specification – has the supplier delivered what he has contracted to. This is an assessment of the system’s functionality, and not of its effectiveness in meeting the investment objectives. Clearly this performance requirement will have been defined in the supply contract, and any variance will need to be assessed as to whether it is acceptable (with appropriate redress) or whether it requires replacement of components or sub-systems to ping performance into line.

Strand 2: How well does the ITS system perform the planned functions?

The second level of performance monitoring relates to the impact of the ITS system on its targeted transport function(s). The feasibility study and investment justification will have set objectives for performance in the affected areas of the business, and it is important that these be monitored not only immediately after the system has been deployed but also over the longer term. Initial performance gains have sometimes been shown to be illusory, and to have resulted only from the high level of management attention during project implementation.

Strand 3: What other impacts does the ITS system have?

Finally the impact of the ITS implementation on other transport functions also needs to be monitored, both during the installation process (when it is likely to have been negative) but also over the longer term. This will confirm, or otherwise, any potential side benefits of the ITS system that had been identified during the design process or subsequently during implementation. This is particularly important for those functions that can be facilitated or enhanced by ITS technologies or data, but were not part of the investment justification.