SMRT to change staff uniforms for “Functionality and Comfort”.

MRT Train Faults? Just change the uniforms

In a bid to continue its rebranding efforts, SMRT has decided to change its staffs’ uniforms.

From next Monday (March 5), 5,000 SMRT employees – station staff, train captains and technicians, will be wearing this new uniform:

Personally, we feel it looks a little too close to the AirAsia stewardess uniform. Source

SMRT took 1 year of discussions before making the changes to the uniform.

It had discussions with both its staff and the National Transport Workers Union, before coming out with the new uniform – ostensibly for “functionality and comfort“.

The new uniform has “improved material and fitting to meet the needs of the staff deployed at stations” – according to SMRT chief corporate officer Gerard Koh.

The cost of introducing the revamped uniforms is not revealed.

SMRT rebranding itself?

This move comes days after SMRT publicly announced it was adopting the Japanese Kaizen method of tool arrangement to improve efficiency in maintenance and building works.

Kaizen method of arranging tools – or basically being neater when working. Source: CNA

While some members of the public lauded SMRT for its efforts, many saw it as self-praise.

Certain industry experts also pointed out Kaizen had been in use for 30 years in Japan, and that SMRT was slow on the uptake.

Several others cited that the need to change their work practices showed a huge gulf in efficiency standards between SMRT and private sector industries.

The move might have come as Japanese firm Meidensha was recently given a $500 million contract to upgrade our train systems:

Japanese firm to upgrade MRT for $500 million

Nonetheless, it is clear that SMRT is at least somewhat determined to change its public image.

As Singaporeans, let’s hope they do get their act together and provide more efficient public transport ASAP.

And enact real change and improvements to its system, rather than just cosmetic ones as such.

Folding Seats on new MRT trains to increase standing space during peak hours

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