As an integral part of the transport network, we need a robust plan that puts sustainability and stakeholders at the heart of everything we do.
For the first time, the Department for Transport has given us defined objectives. Our strategic approach will help us respond to social, economic and environmental risks and opportunities, while continuing to build strong partnerships with our customers and communities.
Embedding sustainable development in the way we do business.
Our strategy shows how we plan to deliver a framework that aligns with the Rail Industry’s Sustainable Development Principles. These core values are fundamental in delivering a railway that will meet the needs of society without compromising future quality of life.
Our strategy focuses on 8 key themes:
Delivering value for our customers.We’ll continue to work with Transport Focus to make sure we meet the needs of our customers and improve their experience.
- fund an independent Passenger Link Manager to carry out more National Rail Passenger Survey work and ongoing research relating to Franchise Services
- employ more Customer Ambassadors, to help our customers at stations
- install more information screens, microphones and information boards and improve public announcement systems at key stations across the network
- use social media to keep our customers up-to-date during disruption
- work with the transport police to review security and crime risks at our stations to increase our customers’ confidence in their personal security
- review our strategy to increase seat capacity, enabling us to operate a timetable that strengthens our services
- publish an open and transparent annual Stakeholder Report which will contain feedback from our partners and stakeholders including Network Rail, who are key to the delivery of our services
- work with Network Rail to reduce disruption from engineering works
- keep key stakeholders informed about our sustainability strategy
- update our Carbon Calculator to provide more specific data on emissions from rail journeys
- provide an integrated and accessible transport system, that will support different forms of travel and improve our customers' door-to-door journeys
- actively monitor all our customer service channels and listen to feedback from all stakeholders
Measuring and managing our environmental impact is key to the success of our business.We will work with our partners to increase recycling and divert waste from landfills. We’ll work with our stakeholders on sustainability, and improve the reporting of our environmental key performance indicators.
- achieve and maintain certification for ISO standards 14001 (Environmental Management) and ISO 50001 (Energy Management) for the entire franchise
- install intelligent heating and lighting controls at stations and depots across the network
- achieve a 75% recycling rate, and reduce the stream of non-hazardous waste direct to landfill to zero
- install Air Source Heat Pumps and Voltage Optimisation Units at all feasible locations across the network
- where practical, install smart water meters at all depots and stations with mains water supplies
- as part of our Traction Strategy, continue to highlight and assess opportunities to improve fleet fuel efficiency up to 2020
- attempt to reduce the impacts associated with air pollution, noise, the discharge of waste on to tracks and other environmental nuisances
- report environmental key performance indicator data to the Department for Transport at regular intervals throughout the franchise
- report on the reduction in carbon emissions attributed to the introduction of our new fleets of Intercity Express and Electrostar trains
- ensure the environmental impact of new and refurbished assets is reduced during construction
- work with our industry partners and stakeholders to take part in innovative projects linked to sustainable development
- deliver sustainable development training and briefings to all staff, and make staff aware of how they can reduce the environmental impacts within their role
Making a positive contribution to the communities in which we operate.We will continue to support Community Rail Partnerships and will produce an open and transparent annual Stakeholder Report.
We’ll also work with local government, authorities and enterprise partnerships to deliver our services and improve the transport network, and implement our Customer and Communities Improvement Fund for the benefit of communities in areas of need.
- continue to fund Community Rail Partnerships
- publish an open and transparent annual Stakeholder Report at the end of each financial year
- hold an annual Community Rail Conference each year of the franchise
- hold an annual Local Authority and Local Enterprise Partnership event for representatives from areas served by GWR each year of the franchise
- continue to work with the Job Centre to issue discounted rail tickets to job seekers
- invest in programmes to assist the long-term unemployed, such as The Prince’s Trust 'Get in to Railways' Scheme, work placements and employability skills mentoring
- work with local authorities to increase services on Cornish branch lines to provide better connections with our main line services
- offer affordable fares to make sure cost is not a barrier to people choosing to travel by rail
- develop an in-depth and accurate understanding of the needs and aspirations of our customers and stakeholders through our Customer and Stakeholder Engagement Strategy
Our goal is to make GWR an inclusive and supportive place to work.We will maintain our Investors in People certification and apply our diversity strategy to all recruitment, as well as continuing to support apprentices across GWR.
We’ll also continue to monitor employee engagement and will regularly review and improve our reward and recognition programme.
- maintain our Investors in People Gold status
- apply our Diversity Strategy to all recruitment activities to create a more inclusive culture across GWR
- improve workplace-related data collection and carry out equality and diversity profiling for GWR
- continue to offer apprentice programmes in engineering and operations
- ensure our sustainability vision becomes ‘business as usual’ throughout GWR
- monitor and improve employee attendance by implementing in-house Occupational Health and Wellbeing programmes
- regularly review and improve the GWR Rewards and Recognition programme
- monitor employee engagement and satisfaction through employee surveys
- develop objectives and targets for issues highlighted in the workplace through external assessments such as Investors in People and EFQM
We will work with our partners to provide the smoothest door-to-door journeys possible.We’ll improve the integration of different methods of transport and ensure our services are accessible to all, as well as reducing carbon emissions on our network by helping our customers make more sustainable travel choices.
- improve access to our services by using our best endeavours to modify our fleet to be compliant with the 'Persons of Reduced Mobility Technical Specification for Interoperability' (PRM TSI)
- make sure the wheelchair ramps at our stations are compliant with the PRM TSI specification
- work with manufacturers to make sure new trains provide the best accessibility for our customers
- promote investment in more bike storage facilities at our stations
- implement recommendations identified in Station Travel Plans for key locations on the network
- help our customers to make more sustainable, door-to-door, travel choices, by identifying opportunities to enhance our ‘green travel’ and integrated transport options
- support the door-to-door journey needs of our customers, by working with local authorities to increase car parking at key locations
- work with Network Rail and the Environment Agency to review the impact of extreme weather events and develop contingency plans and long-term risk management plans
- work with Network Rail to understand how their Climate Change Adaptation work minimises risk at key locations across our network, and use this information to revise our business continuity and service delivery plans
- develop a Vulnerable Persons Policy that identifies those who are considered to be ‘vulnerable’ and detail how to protect them
Ensuring clear and open channels of communication with our stakeholders.We will engage our stakeholders on sustainability and environmental issues, and update them at regular intervals.
- work with Network Rail to create a communication plan that keeps stakeholders and passengers informed with infrastructure plans across the network
- use information screens and announcements at our stations, social media and advertising, to keep our passengers up to date with the progress of our infrastructure plans
- keep stakeholders updated on our progress in implementing our sustainability strategy
- work with our stakeholders, local authorities, line-side neighbours, local interest groups and Community Rail Partnerships on environmental issues across the network
- continue to track our social value contributions through the London Benchmarking Group process
- increase the transparency of our environmental KPI reporting, identify trends and track performance against targets
Taking a sustainable approach to our supply chain.We will make sure sustainability is built in to all our contracts, and work with suppliers to reduce waste and improve energy efficiency, as well as promoting the use of apprentices.
- increase the number of small and medium businesses used in our supply chain
- host an event for our key suppliers, to update them on our progress in implementing a sustainable procurement policy and strategy
- work with our suppliers to reduce waste and identify opportunities for take back schemes
- continue to support local economies by sourcing on train food and drink from local producers
- use BS11000 Collaborative Business Relationships to improve decision-making with our key suppliers
- hold regular reviews with our suppliers to make sure sustainability issues are being addressed
- carry out site inspections during construction works to make sure sustainability and environmental risks are addressed
Boosting the productivity and competitiveness of the UK.We’ll continue to work with local authorities and enterprise partnerships to improve our services and contribute to regional economic growth.
- issue discounted rail tickets to job seekers in partnership with the Job Centre
- invest in programmes such as The Prince’s Trust ‘Get in to Railways’ course, work placements and employability skills mentoring, to help the long-term unemployed
- work with our partners to deliver Local Growth Fund schemes that support our customers and meet local social and economic needs
- work with local authorities and enterprise partnerships, to secure match funding to improve services and facilities that will contribute to economic growth and job creation in the region