How Optimizing School Bus Routes Can Solve Bus Driver Shortage?

A shortage in school bus drivers has been an issue since before the pandemic and has only exacerbated since. A lack of school bus drivers is an even bigger problem for schools in regions where providing transportation for children is mandatory. With schools slowly reopening post the pandemic, this is an issue that needs immediate addressing.

Fortunately, there are ways around this problem. There are solutions, both technical and creative, that allow schools to optimize their bus routes, reducing the number of buses that need to simultaneously run and, ergo, reducing the number of drivers needed.

School bus management software is critical in achieving optimized bus routes. It consolidates all management and administrative tasks involved in transportation onto an easy-to-use platform. The high-level visibility, real-time tracking, and the ability to quickly make changes to bus routes (among other features) help schools significantly optimize their transportation routes. 

Click here to know the things one should know before using school bus routing software?

Digitization As A Means To Optimize Bus Routes

Digitizing transportation tasks with a school bus transportation software like SafeBus helps administrators and fleet managers increase route planning and assignment efficacy. This, in turn, allows schools to fulfill their transportation responsibilities with fewer buses and drivers. Here’s how SafeBus optimizes bus routes: 

  1. Bird’s-eye view:

    Being able to view, in real-time, the location of all buses en route gives fleet managers the ability to make quick decisions like changing a student’s allotment from one bus to another (with a simple drag and drop feature), depending on which one’s closer or will reach sooner.

  2. Automated route management:

    SafeBus is built with automation technology like AI and machine learning that can analyze live factors like traffic jams and reroute busses in real-time, ensuring they take the most efficient route to and from school.

  3. Real-time updates:

    Admins receive real-time updates about bus condition, student/driver updates, current location, etc. In case of incidents, like a bus breakdown, for example, admins can take quick action and coordinate with other drivers to minimize downtime in transportation. 

  4. Operations in real-time:

    SafeBus allows admins to quickly inform parents of bus schedules on their phones and in real-time. These notifications can also be automated. This frees up drivers from any administrative tasks and the time it consumes.

  5. Analytics:

    SafeBus provides insights and analytics, including vehicle count, transportation routes, bus stoppages, violations, vehicle capacity utilization, vehicle-wise punctuality, and traffic alerts in real-time. This information can be used to map out the most optimized transportation routes.

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Additional Benefits In Digitizing School Bus Transportation

Digitizing school bus transportation does not only help admins and fleet managers; the software also contains features that help parents.

  • SafeBus notifies parents when their child’s allotted bus is en route allowing them to manage their time and activities accordingly.
  • When boarding and deboarding a bus, children swipe their NFC card, which notifies parents when their child boards and disembarks.
  • Parents are notified when the school bus is near the stoppage point with an ETA, so parents and children don’t have to wait at a stop for long.
  • Parents can view the bus location in real-time and contact the driver via the application if needed.

Click here to know why digitized fleet management is the need of the hour?

Digitized fleet management is already being used successfully in larger transportation businesses, but it does not have to be limited to fleets. SafeBus brings the power of digital fleet management to smaller fleets such as school buses while making it affordable and easy to use, both for the people implementing the software and for the parent community. The driver shortage has always been an unpleasant situation to deal with; with SafeBus, we may just have discovered the optimal solution.

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