NJ Transit’s new ‘customer advocate’ seeks to improve riders’ experience

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New Jersey Transit is making an attempt to improve customer service for its riders.

The agency recently hired Stewart Mader as the NJ Transit Customer Advocate. Mader says that his first order of business was to experience NJ Transit from the rider perspective.

“When I ride a bus or train, I’m looking for the things that make a customer delighted or things that may impact an experience and I want to identify those things,” he says.

Mader held a similar position with the Port Authority in regards to the PATH trains. He says that there he brought customers to the table with their ideas and says that this is how he finds his success.

RELATED: NJ Transit officials monitor issues from commuter ‘war room’ 

Mader formed a Customer Advisory Council at PATH, which was responsible for making some very specific improvements.

“We worked closely with PATH staff on the rollout of countdown clocks, cell servicing stations, adjustments of service during a.m./p.m. peaks to handle growth in ridership,” he says.

Mader says that he wants to form the same type of council at NJ Transit.

“It gives customers the ability to feel they are having a direct impact in enhancing service for fellow riders,” he says.

Mader says that his job is to “make sure Transit is as good and as responsive and reliable as they want."

He says that details about the advisory council and how riders can apply to be a part of it will come out over the next few months.

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