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Enhancing Competitiveness: Comfort Taxi

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    1. Describe the customer value proposition and the profit model that underlay Comfort Taxi’s business model. Customer Value Proposition
    Who is the Customer. Comfort Transportations customers are taxi cab drivers (internal), and those who need taxi services (external). What does the customer value? Taxi Cab Drivers value easy access to external customers and ease of use for the other problems they must worry about such as rental fees and gas. External Customers value lower wait times, ease of use in ordering a cab, good value for the service received and an easy manner of accessing a cab and other services.

    How does our product/ service meet the customer’s needs? The Technologies that Comfort Transportation uses allows for the the drivers to give more taxi rides and thus increase their income and at the same time give customers what they desire, less wait times and ease of use.

    How is revenue generated? Revenue is generated from taxi service fees and pick of fees from customers. It does not clearly state how comfort taxi receives revenue from this. It appears they split the pick of fee with the driver and drivers pay fees to Comfort Taxi but how much and how this is allocated is not specific.

    What is the cost structure? Comfort Taxi has overhead costs from operators and other overhead expenses, payments on cars and technology. The reading suggests the drivers pay for gas but Comfort Taxi pays for performance maintenance on the vehicles and insurance for the drivers.

    How exactly is profit created? Profit is generated when taxi drivers spend more time picking up and driving external customers to their destinations and are able to pay the rental fees for the vehicles.

    2. What is (are) Comfort Taxi’s dominant value discipline(s)?

    Comfort taxi offers a range of taxi services, from taxi services for the mass market to niche taxi services for corporate users. Being the largest taxi operator in Singapore, comfort taxi provides best-in-class services that lead the market. They are fast, have safe and reliable vehicles, supported by friendly staff and operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The values are achieved with trained drivers and staff, harnessing the latest technologies, building operational excellence, and providing an environment where quality services and continuous improvement are encouraged and rewarded. In order for Comfort Taxi to fulfill the needs of both the internal and external customers and invested in its technology infrastructure, which satisfies the individual and collective customer overall.

    The organization knows the wants and needs and provides the desired service and information to the customers. With the world’s first and largest dispatch facility that integrated IVR and a GPS, Comfort Taxi’s dispatch center can locate an individual taxi instantaneously with reasonable accuracy. Thanks to the Driver Online Enquiry System, drivers can view all records related to their payments, rental dues, CabLink commission’s dues, merit/demerit points, etc. DOES can be accessed through the Internet or through SMS and is the most convenient system out there. Commuters can look up their status of their taxi bookings, lost items, or complaints through either phone or IVR with the Commuter Enquiry System which adds value to the overall customer satisfaction.

    3. What is (are) Comfort Taxi’s dominant IT strategic role(s)?
    The strategic role of their IT is to provide support and value to either internal customers (the drivers) or external customers (the passengers) or both at once. For example the CabLink System that they have implemented allows commuters to call a taxi at any location at any time. the system then matches this external customer with the nearest available taxi. This benefits the external customer in the fact that they save time and convenience, and the internal customer or driver is benefited in gains in terms of an extra calling charge. Another system that they have that serves both types of customers is the Customer Relationship Management System.

    Systems that they have implemented to serve just the internal customer include the Driver Online Enquiry System, Fleet Management System, Rental Management System, and the Driver Management System. Systems that support the external customer include the Commuter Enquiry System, Customer Complaint System, and the Lost and Found system.

    Comfort believe that by implementing these systems and giving greater support to both types of customers will pay off in the long run by creating greater loyalty from both, which will help keep revenue high and their market share high and will also help them to keep their drivers driving for them rather than leaving for another transportation service. In other words their IT systems provide solutions to problems, information that is needed by the customers, provides a great value compared to the cost, and provides better access to this service. IT is how they implement SIVA.

    4. How is Comfort Taxi able to sustain its IT enabled competitive advantage in the Singapore Taxi business?

    Comfort Taxi sustains its competitive advantage by keeping communication lines open with both internal and external customers. They are focussed on having continuous learning and customer centric innovation. The IT system is utilized for information gathering from both the internal and external customers. The external customers are frequently given surveys. The information gathered is used in decision making. Customers complained about rude behavior of call center operators, so SpeedCall was developed to offer an access channel with no human interface. SIVA is used by executives to find the needs of customer groups and find solutions to them.

    The services are constantly being upgraded from suggestions from the external customers. An example of this is SpeedCall announcing two addresses instead of one. Internal customers offer suggestions for improvement as well. The GPRS system is fairer than radio based voice dispatching. The GPRS automatically assigns or offers cab drivers a job to bid on. Previously the radio system allowed favoritism of drivers by operators. CabLink allows drivers to make more money from the convenience fee and have more jobs. The improvement of call and placement systems allow the drivers to get more jobs and make more money. Solutions and upgrades are not always implemented. Some tech upgrades are not as beneficial to the customers. For example a voice recognition system was not implemented because it was thought that it would cause customer frustration.

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