The State-Amtrak Intercity Passenger Rail Committee (SAIPRC) is a multi-agency body comprised of Amtrak, the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), and 20 state agencies from 17 states. SAIPRC’s staff is a small and growing team of highly motivated transportation professionals, whose mission is to improve passenger rail service across the United States. We currently have three full-time staff with offices in New York City and Washington, DC, and expect to add two more positions (including this one) in 2020.
SAIPRC’s focus is the state-supported rail services—Amtrak routes 750 miles or less (outside of the Northeast Corridor) that are funded by the states in which they run. The 28 state-supported routes connect city pairs like Los Angeles to San Diego, Seattle to Portland (OR), Chicago to St. Louis, Washington DC to Richmond, Boston to Brunswick (ME), New York to Toronto, Oklahoma City to Fort Worth, and many more. In FY 2019, the state-supported services carried a record 15.4 million annual passengers—about one-half of all Amtrak riders nationwide.
SAIPRC was created by Congress and is responsible for overseeing cost-sharing between the states and Amtrak; managing collaboration in areas like marketing, rolling stock planning, and reducing delays; and improving the data Amtrak and the states use to make business decisions.
SAIPRC is seeking a skilled professional who will bring energy and passion to promoting passenger rail service throughout the U.S. The successful candidate will enjoy getting to know people and their concerns, leading focused discussions, and following through on plans. For the successful candidate, this position provides an opportunity to be a key player on a small and highly productive team, to influence passenger rail service on a national scale, and to help guide processes that are generally the purview of managers and senior officials.
The incumbent will oversee SAIPRC’s activities related to collaborative planning and marketing, principally through the management of the Marketing Working Group. The Working Group is comprised of representatives from Amtrak, the states, and the U.S. DOT Federal Railroad Administration, and members typically represent managerial staff within each organization. In coordination with the Working Group, this position will lead and advance projects aimed at growing ridership, increasing revenue, enhancing the customer experience, and improving customer satisfaction.
Responsibilities will include managing the ongoing collaboration of the WG, supporting the development of shared Amtrak-state marketing initiatives and tools, overseeing research in marketing best practices and data analysis, hiring and managing consultants, improving performance reports provided to states, and supporting states in their review of ridership, revenue, and customer satisfaction data. Depending on the successful candidate’s interests and SAIPRC needs, the position may also contribute to ongoing initiatives relating to cost sharing, equipment procurement, external communication, or other aspects of passenger rail service.
Manage SAIPRC’s Marketing Working Group (WG), including developing the Working Group’s annual work plan, organizing regular meetings, developing meeting agenda, facilitating meetings, identifying action items, and ensuring progress on WG activities.
Develop an annual shared marketing plan summarizing state and Amtrak marketing activities, based on input from all WG members.
Oversee one or more initiatives focused on increasing ridership and revenue as identified by the Marketing WG each year. These projects are expected to allow Amtrak and the state to work together to implement a specific initiative (e.g., develop new marketing tools or materials) or develop strategies to better target a specific market (e.g., students, seniors, business travelers). Specific responsibilities may include identifying project goals, developing a project work plan and schedule, tracking progress by Amtrak and the states, hiring and managing consultants, and evaluating project results.
Oversee one or more research projects focused on increasing ridership and revenue, as identified by the Marketing WG each year. These projects are expected to review existing data and/or best practices, to help some or all WG members identify new strategies. Specific responsibilities may include identifying research focus based on stakeholder input, developing a project scope, overseeing the participation of WG members, hiring and managing consultants, supporting data collection and analysis, and facilitating the development of project deliverables.
Oversee implementation of improvements to the monthly reports provided to states on ridership, revenue, customer satisfaction, and related data. Activities may include developing an inventory of existing reports, collecting data requests, establishing a roadmap for report improvements with Amtrak and states, and working with contractors to improve data access, refine report design, and/or provide training to states.
Perform ad hoc analysis to support state representatives in the analysis of ridership, revenue, and related data.
Draft written procedures to define standard information sharing related to marketing and data transparency and generate consensus on new procedures with Marketing WG.
Engage and manage consultants to supplement SAIPRC staff resources. Consultant management will include the development of scopes of work, estimation of project budgets, oversight and/or participation in the consultant selection project, and day-to-day management of projects to ensure that that deliverables are delivered on-time and on-budget.
Support the Executive Director in the continued implementation of the SAIPRC annual work plan, including assisting in the planning and execution of SAIPRC’s Quarterly Meetings, performing outreach and communication to SAIPRC members, the development of SAIPRC’s annual report to Congress, drafting material for public audiences, and delivering presentations.
Minimum qualifications and experience
Bachelor’s degree in public policy, urban and regional planning, transportation planning, economics, business, or a related field.
At least five years’ experience working in transportation, government, public policy, accounting, finance, or a related field. (Note: Excellent candidates with 2-4 years of experience may be considered for this position with the title of Analyst.)
Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
Excellent quantitative and analytical skills.
Ability to work in a highly collaborative environment.
Experience in stakeholder facilitation and coordination.
Ability to translate technical analyses into meaningful and appropriate information for different audiences and purposes (staff-level coordination, executive-level action, education for elected officials and the public, etc.).
Ability to multi-task effectively while remaining flexible in a fast-paced environment.
Advanced proficiency in Microsoft Office, including Excel, Office, PowerPoint, and Access.
Experience managing consultants.
Experience managing projects independently and as part of a team.
Experience or interest in the marketing of passenger rail or similar transportation services, including strategies to expand ridership or revenue
Experience or interest in using transportation demand and market data to inform decisions about transportation planning, marketing, and customer outreach
Familiarity with or experience in current best practices for marketing and customer response (e.g., social media, pixel tracking)
Ability to balance multiple objectives, including expanding ridership and revenue while maximizing the public benefit of a taxpayer subsidized transportation service
Experience directly managing one or more employees
Experience with data analysis, marketing analytics, data visualization, and statistics
SAIPRC has offices in New York City and Washington, DC. This position may be based in New York, Washington, DC, or Philadelphia, PA.
Up to 25%.
About State-Amtrak Intercity Passenger Rail Committee
The State-Amtrak Intercity Passenger Rail Committee (SAIPRC) is a multi-agency body whose members include 21 agencies in 18 states, Amtrak, and the Federal Railroad Administration. SAIPRC is directed by Congress to facilitate collaboration among its members and to oversee implementation of a standard cost-sharing methodology for the State-Supported Intercity Passenger Rail (IPR) Services—routes 750 miles or less outside the Northeast Corridor (which runs from Boston to Washington). Per federal statute, states are responsible for funding the costs of each state-supported route. The PRIIA 209 Methodology, developed by Amtrak and the states, guides how costs are shared among the State-Supported IPR Services across Amtrak’s national network.By working together, SAIPRC’s members aim to improve the intercity passenger rail network—to support the growing demand for rail travel and to encourage economic growth. In 2018, SAIPRC hired its first Executive Director to oversee activities and to establish a small, highly productive team to support the implementation of SAIPRC’s annual work plan.