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Is technology the key to success in the transport sector?

The rise of driverless car technology along with electric vehicles is enhancing the transport sector, setting out the future for success.

By April Slattery

Over half of transport leaders believe technology is crucial to helping Britain overcome socioeconomic issues it faces, according to a new report from Fujitsu.

The ‘Technology in a Transforming Britain’ report from Fujitsu revealed that 60% of transport leaders believe technology is the key to future success, as 87% believe technology is bringing positive change to their organisation.

The report revealed that the top three benefits technology brings include operational efficiency (38%), employee productivity (36%) and business growth (31%). Additionally, despite the concerns of technology taking over the workplace and replacing jobs almost three quarters (72%) of respondents admitted to being excited about the change technology is bringing.

“The transport sector is changing faster than ever before – and its positive approach to technology adoption can bring huge advantages for UK citizens and sector organisations,” said Russell Goodenough, Client Managing Director of Transport at Fujitsu. “As we look ahead, it’s clear we can expect significant further changes as technologies like AI and biometrics are rolled out across the sector. What’s critical now is for transport leaders to develop clear digital strategies that will see the greatest impact made, so that we can help provide the technology and expertise to help them succeed.”

Is technology the key to success in the transport sector?

Electric vehicles are favoured the most by the UK public

Technology in the transport sector has been more of a myth crowded behind innovative ideas, which have not materialised to much yet. Many organisations have begun research and development into areas such as self-driving, automation in cars or data storage but few have put plans into practice.

Fujitsu’s report revealed that 30% of transport leaders confirmed they will be implementing AI in the next 12 months. The top three areas that were most favourable to invest in by leaders include Robotic Process Automation (RPA) for 31% of leaders, AI (30%) and biometrics were favoured by just over a quarter (28%) of respondents.

The report found that despite only 18% of the public are willing to put their child in a driverless car, transport was named the top industry for technology fuelled change by 28% of respondents behind education. Additionally almost a fifth (18%) of the public believe transport is changing quicker than any other industry, as 43% believe electric cars will make the most positive impact on citizens’ lives. However, embracing other technology such as driverless cars almost half (41%) of respondents said the idea made them uncomfortable.

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With concerns still among the pubic, further research and investment must be made into developments and engaging the trust of citizens. Chancellor Philip Hammond confirmed in his Spring Statement there will be a total of £840m of transport funding made available to all English cities, which will help boost developments in the sector even further. The funding will go towards R&D for transport, but also skills for employees which is much needed as the report found over half of workers do not feel prepared for the technological change.

“We must be responsible with the opportunities that technology affords the transport sector,” Goodenough said. “Skills is one area that must be tackled head on, only 58% of transport professionals believe employees have the skills to take full advantage of the new technology. If we are to realize the sector’s digital potential, we must look at how we train and reskill workers to meet the demands of a technology-driven environment.”

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