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RTO - pulls & pressures

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Private transportPublic Transport


...In last five years, three and a half to four lakh licences have been given. There is sheer pressure from the applicants to get a licence, and the department has no other go but to give in to pressure

Demand cannot be curtailed but quality needs to be maintained. It not the number of licences refused that counts but the quality of the ones approved that is important. 

...In 1992, when 6.5 lakh vehicles plied on the roads, the department had 2,000 personnel. Today, the vehicular population is above 80 lakhs and we have just 1,900 people are RTOs in the state, with only one vehicle inspector, who deals with everything from vehicle checking to issuing Registration Certificate. When you have so much to do, you virtually end up doing nothing right. They just end up signing on the documents without checking anything

How do you augment capacity without adding headcount organically? This is the trick that govts and administration need to master. They are used to doing it all themselves. They need to leverage partner & vendor ecosystem. How do you use a third party who can scale up to do the work for you while your job becomes to enforce the service level quality. For a controlled price the RTO can have an external party handle the process (which may be 5 peoples job for ex) while they can spend their efforts on measuring the quality of the work the vendor does (which may be a single persons job for ex). Contract drafting and management is the key.

Trying to do everything will leave you with unpleasant consequences... the effectiveness of retrofitting the wrong person for the right job will show up very soon.

...Since the average age of the staff at the department is about 43 years, it took sometime for us to make the staff technologically competent.


idontspam's picture

Focus on the controllable

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Some questions need to be asked of how RTO is leveraging the private driving schools and their capacity. One option is to ensure all licence seekers come through RTO accredited driving schools only. This way RTO can hold driving schools accountable for the quality of drivers based on certain parameters or remove their accreditation when they are below the threshold. This is currently an unregulated market.

The question then arises how to design the system so the driving schools focus on quality and not on numbers?

One way I can think of is ensuring a level playing field in terms of numbers. Have a quota of licences or a fixed price revenue etc which forces the player to focus on non revenue related differentiators.

The output quality can then be supplemented by a reward mechanism. If the drivers from the school attain a per capita driver quality rating of above x% they are eligible for a bonus. Below y% their accreditation will be removed. 

This will bring the focus on the content of the tests and how good they are to measure the quality of the people. This is in control of the RTO. The theory/driving tests and their grading will need to be revamped to other country standards. 

The quality of ratings, the tests etc will determine what drivers we churn out not the people in RTO. Thus, we have removed the focus from individual capability of the inspectors their age ability to learn etc etc and moved it to the documentation which can be controlled by a broader knowledgeable group.

murali772's picture

excuses and excuses

191 users have liked.

The bane of governmental functioning is the "lowest tender" system, and its overall "revenue orientation" - check this. Unless this changes, there's not much to hope for.

Meanwhile, why is the Transport Dept adopting an Ostrich-like attitude in this crucial matter?

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