TORONTO, Ont. — A recent survey has found that the majority of shippers are dissatisfied with the rail freight service they receive from Canada’s Class 1 railways, CN and CP. The survey, conducted by NRG Research Group, measured the satisfaction levels of 262 shippers and was conducted as part of Transport Canada’s Rail Freight Service Review.
When asked to rate their level of satisfaction on a scale of 1 to 7 (7 being very satisfied), a mere 17% of shippers reported a satisfaction level of 6 or 7, and 35% gave dissatisfaction scores of 3 or lower. Forty-five per cent of respondents indicated their satisfaction level had decreased over the past three years, and a large portion (62%) reported that they had suffered a serious financial impact as a result of poor rail freight service.
Most shipper dissatisfaction related to problems with: on-time delivery of cars at origin and destination, timely pick-up of empty cars after unloading, reliability of car supply, consistent transit times, and responsiveness of railways to the problems. Survey respondents indicated that their level of satisfaction could be increased if railways improved their communication with customers by providing easy access to a customer service representative, greater consistency in transit times and more accurate forecasts in order to meet demand.
Canadian Trucking Alliance is currently surveying members who work with the railway community to measure trucking industry satisfaction with their railway partners. The results of this survey will be consolidated into a submission to Transport Canada who is asking the trucking industry for this feedback.