On the 9th of December, ITxPT held the fourth and final Members Meeting and second General Assembly of 2021. The well-attended meeting contained interesting reports from new Principal ITxPT member De Lijn about their upcoming ITxPT implementation and an outside view on ITxPT from guest speaker and consultant Søren Sørensen. Another important topic for the day was the ITxPT roadmap and adding another year to it.
De Lijn – Implementing ITxPT
A significant contribution to the Members Meeting came from Rudi Willems, at the Belgian/Flemish PTA/PTO and new ITxPT Principal member De Lijn. He reported from their work with implementing ITxPT in all their 4000 vehicles in the upcoming years. De Lijn has decided to integrate ITxPT out of the need to do more for customers, become more sustainable, and integrate different onboard and back-office systems. Their case was also an excellent opportunity to start a series of implementation workshops for PTA and PTO.
Implementation workshops and consultant workshops
To enable public transport authorities and operators to share their experiences from implementing ITxPT, learn from each other, and exchange ideas among peers, ITxPT recently initiated a series of workshops. The first session discussed De Lijn’s planned implementation case, and PTA and PTO members of ITxPT joined the discussion. The idea behind the workshops is for authorities and operators to share the scope, planning, and organization of an ITxPT implementation, and it will be an ongoing series of talks.
As a part of the work to support consultants and their contribution to the ITxPT ecosystem, ITxPT recently launched a series of workshops for consultants. It is a standing invitation to a series of workshops. ITxPT and consultants experienced in ITxPT tenders and implementation are working together to define the role of consultants in the ITxPT ecosystem. How can consultants best support authorities and operators when implementing ITxPT, and what support do the consultants need from ITxPT?
Guest speaker Søren Sørensen
Søren Sørensen, who participated in the first consultant workshop, also joined the Members Meeting as a guest speaker to give his outside view on ITxPT and the importance of standards and integration. With the experience from consulting for the World Bank on bus digitalization in Slovakia, he talked about the importance of avoiding vendor lock-in by using standardization and ITxPT. He pointed out that neutral and understood standards are a way to avoid vendor lock-in and that ITxPT is very useful for a consultant, not to reinvent the wheel. From his point of view, it is also helpful for a consultant not to have to get into the nitty-gritty details of technology and the possibility to build systems with Lego parts that fit together.
He also talked about the importance of collecting and sharing experience within ITxPT and that the ITxPT specification works as a cookbook for integration. He pressed the importance of communicating that ITxPT does not discriminate against the market and is open to everyone.
ITxPT constantly growing
With nineteen new members in 2021, ITxPT keeps growing and becoming an essential factor within Mobility IT in Europe and the rest of the world. Therefore, communication is becoming increasingly important. With the constant growth, the focus is not to acquire new members but rather to support members and others in understanding and implementing ITxPT. With a new record of 744 new registrations to the documentation center during 2021 and a total of 3682 registrants, the interest in ITxPT constantly grows and has never been higher.
ITxPT roadmap report
The Requirements Committee and the Technical Committee reported on the 2021 progress, like the Requirements Committee pre-studies on on-demand transport and integrated multimodal ticketing. Both are important for the fast-growing interest in Mobility as a Service, MaaS, solutions. The Requirements Committee will launch working groups in Q1 for multimodal ticketing and Q2 for on-demand transport. Other reported items were the Technical Committee power management pre-studies and the Requirements Committee delivery of functional requirements for passenger information systems and login services.
Adding another year to the ITxPT roadmap
With the progress of 2021 finishing items of the roadmap, it is time to add new content. The meeting decided on a plan to add another year to the roadmap. Therefore, the Requirements Committee welcomes input on the content for the added year. The Committee will present a suggestion at the 24th of March Members Meeting.
The new governance and specification change process work well. Therefore the meeting decided to downgrade the priority of the process development. The topic will, however, not disappear from the schedule altogether. There is always a need for improvements and reevaluation of processes and collaboration methods.
Implementation survey report
Pascale Guyot from the ITxPT team reported the results from the implementation survey, and they will also be made available for members on the ITxPT Documentation Center. 91% of the survey participants answered that they have done an ITxPT implementation or plan to do one. The answers come from 23 different countries, mainly in Europe, but there is a growing interest from North America and Asia. The two most common factors for ITxPT implementation mentioned in the survey were interoperability for customers and the ITxPT specification required in tenders and POCs.
Lars Paape from the ITxPT team could report that the lab is up to speed and has worked through the backlog reported on at the September Members Meeting. The focus for the future is to upgrade and automate the lab and labeling processes. The lab will also make a lab FAQ available from already reoccurring questions. It is also very welcome with more questions – to support implementation and collect more questions and answers for the FAQ in the same process. The lab is looking for lab engineers to Gothenburg and Paris to increase the capacity, develop the cloud lab, and support the upcoming new local labs planned together with ITxPT members.
Upcoming Members Meeting
The date for the first 2022 Members Meeting is the 24th of March.