Data collection and analysis enables stakeholders to identify transportation challenges and "gaps" in existing transportation services. Although the location of individuals relative to location of services is the most obvious transportation concern, service boundaries, limited hours of service and the type of service provided can be barriers as well. As part of job access planning, stakeholders must determine to what degree a problem exists and the best means to address it.
This chapter discusses analytical tools such as mapping software, interviews and surveys, and how they can be useful to determine unmet transportation needs. Although the results of an analysis may recommend adding or enhancing transportation services, stakeholders must consider the types of jobs the target population is qualified for, whether jobs are part-time, seasonal or temporary, if there are childcare issues, and how to help individuals sustain employment or get a better job.