Metcard - Miller Consulting Group Audit - May 2001

Page last modified/checked: Saturday, 13 September, 2003
We stress again that some aspects of the Metcard system are beyond the scope of this website. However, it would be a shame not to acknowledge the existence of this worthwhile report, (approximately 80 pages long), which was compiled during March 2001 under contract to the Department of Infrastructure - a link to their site and the report is provided here. Click on the link "2001 Independent Audit of the Automatic Ticketing System". (This is in .pdf format requiring Adobe Acrobat reader). Alternatively, Rod has provided an interpretation summary here.

This audit widely explores many topics such as

  • The contractual arrangements between Onelink, the Public Transport Corporation and the Revenue Clearing House.
    This also includes history and framework which leads into an important part of the report;
  • Operational performance. Here maintenance/repairs and the collation of data by Onelink and its effectiveness are studied.
  • Actions and suggestions focus on the use of this data and the better definition of contractual obligations/responsibilities between parties.

By this point, 45 pages have been reached.The remainder of the report was compiled by Steer, Davies, Gleave for the Director of Public Transport. This includes an extensive field survey of the automatic ticket system on all modes. The entire rail network (bar two or three locations) was physically observed, along with many tram routes and some buses from selected interchanges. This work judged the functionality of ticket machines and validators, (but not automatic fare gates). All faults and vandalism were classified into "major" and "minor" catagories. This essentially provided a snapshot of the automatic ticketing system from the perspective of a customer and ultimately their ability to purchase a ticket and interface with the equipment.
In this section there is a tremendous amount of observation and statistical analysis, but it is all comfortably presented.
Lastly, an interesting live test was carried out at two adjoining stations over three days, the objective being to measure actual performance of ticket vending machines against data flow being relayed to the Onelink control centre.
Two important findings come out of this report; better system management and techniques will ultimately benefit everyone from stakeholders through to customers and it also reveals the true impacts of vandalism to equipment. In summary, the entire report is an excellent body of work that everybody would agree was absolutely necessary. If, like us, you are interested in more than just collecting Metcards, then we can certainly recommend the Miller report as informative and non-biased reading. It is perhaps ironic that the Miller report is dated exactly 10 years after the release of the "Met Ticketing Taskforce report"- in a way this website is an observation of much of what has occured during that time!