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Rebecca, Operations Associate on supporting the electrification of bus depots

My name is Rebecca, or Bex, I’m an Operations Associate and I’ve been at Zenobē for just over a year now. I joined when there were just three of us in the operations team. In the past year, we’ve doubled in size and bus depots!

01.

Can you tell us a little about the role of the Operations team at Zenobē?

At the end of construction, a bus depot will become operational and the buses ‘go live’ – they’re out on the streets and in service. At this stage, the construction team complete a handover to our team.   The depot operator will be introduced to our smart charging software by Shailen, Zenobē’s Customer Success Manager. Meanwhile, the Operations team take ownership of the project from an operations perspective. By providing extended support to the operator, we ensure they can run their zero emissions routes and maximise the use of our services. 

02.

What are the key areas of support the team provide?

At the core of everything we do is the customer.  

Top of our priorities is ensuring our customers can run their services reliably. We provide 24/7 support, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Whether it’s a problem or a question, one of our team is always on hand to answer that call and keep the routes running. 

Thanks to our technical knowledge base, wealth of experience across different manufacturers, and contractors within close proximity of our sites, we can solve issues remotely or on site with ease. What’s more, we can learn from these issues through data and analysis.  

In our monthly client calls we make sure operators are comfortable and clear on how their depot works. We also discuss optimisation strategies and build smart charging windows based on day/night energy tariffs to further drive down costs as well as reviewing vehicle, charging & all operational performance. 

03.

How do you make life easier for bus operators switching to electric?

Often operators are nervous about making the switch, so we’re there to support them through this transition. Zenobē works closely with its customers right from the start and after the depot is live. The operations team are there throughout the contract to remove the technical risk and ensure the depot is operating without any issues.  

04.

Can you run us through a 'normal' day?

The start of the day always begins with a review of any overnight activity, as most of our depots charge their e-buses overnight. What’s great about our software is that we can actively monitor all sites, allowing our night support team to immediately pick up any issues relating to hardware, software and network infrastructure. 

 

By analysing and investigating data logs we can find the root cause of issues to report back to the relevant manufacturers. Working proactively to diagnose and solve issues, we can mitigate against them occurring again and apply these learnings across all sites we support. If required, I’ll liaise with the manufacturer, ensuring all necessary paperwork is prepared and report any relevant information internally. Through this process we’re constantly growing our understanding of a variety of models and sharing knowledge within the team. 

 

Next, I might have a handover with the construction team. We run through a project’s timeline, identifying key final stages before it goes operational. Direct contact with the dedicated Project Manager is important for us to gain an embedded understanding of the depot’s needs. 

 

Time for a tea break and a quick check in on the software to ensure everything is running smoothly, before a meeting with Shailen. We catch up about our customers, checking they are happy and developing bespoke solutions as required. For example, today we reviewed an operator’s charging schedule to allow for an additional two e-buses using the existing infrastructure. It’s often about facilitating the flexibility they need. 

To end the day (if I’m not on overnight duty) I might return to the software again to pull information about our sites for internal data requests. We’re always reviewing how certain pieces of kit are working together, testing and improving efficiencies. 

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