2 min

« Undercover Boss » : A learning experience for the Uber CEO

Who among you has never seen “Undercover Boss”? A British show offering executives the opportunity to play the role of their employees. Well, it seems that the CEO of the giant Uber, Dara Khosrowshahi has taken part in the game. Indeed, according to an interview with the Wall Street Journal, he became a driver and delivery man last September. He took the surname of “Dara K”, driver of a used Tesla Model Y, proposing his services in San Francisco. A very rewarding experience, which allowed him to finally find the keys to overcome the shortage of drivers following the COVID and to overtake his long-time rival Lyft. Focus on the improvement tracks in favor of drivers that emerged from this undercover operation, part of the vast “Project Boomerang”…

An app experience far from user-friendly

Offering both a delivery service and on-demand transportation, Uber has not stopped adding new services to its application. This plurality makes the registration process complex for drivers. An experience that Dara Khosrowshahi had to face. As highlighted by the American media, “During this incognito mission, he experienced the difficulties of registering on the platform and was punished by the application for refusing trips.

Moreover, this experience also highlighted the fact that it was impossible for the driver to know in advance the amount of his race or the destination. Today, Uber has solved these problems by integrating more than a single registration tunnel on the application and the possibility to know the rider’s drop location in advance.

Customers, not always courteous…

During this introspection, Dara Khosrowshahi was also confronted with the rudeness of some of his customers. A rudeness that drivers are confronted with.

I think the industry as a whole, to some extent, has taken drivers for granted.

Dara Khosrowshahi, CEO AT UBER

Familiarity is reflected in the behavior of some customers. Indeed, the Iranian-American businessman revealed in the interview granted to WSJ, to have attended unwillingly to intimate conversations of his customers. Confessions reveal personal problems or confidential information about their business.

A perverse practice more and more in vogue

Last point raised by Dara Khosvowhahi, and not the least, emanating from the perversity of tipping by some users. Indeed, although launched in 2017, this feature is far from being adopted by all. According to a study conducted by the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), one year after its launch, only 16% of Uber rides are accompanied by a tip.

A practice that can be decisive in the choice of the race for the delivery driver. To the point that some users are increasingly adept at “Tip-baiting”. A practice that consists in offering the driver a high tip when placing the order. But once the order is received, the driver reduces the amount. We can bet that in a very short time, the American giant should remedy this…