Executive Spotlight: Sohier Hall, Luum

Posted: 03/28/2019
Category: Member Spotlight

Tell us about Luum.
Luum is commute business management software for employers who want to offer the most innovative commute benefit programs to their employees. Luum’s business system is designed to make the administrative management of parking workflows, commute benefit policy, and mobility options more automated, seamless, and scalable.  The results: employees are delighted in having more options and they reduce their drive-alone frequency; and employers have the tools, data insights, and workflows to bring great value to their organization.

What are you and your organization seeking to achieve?
We are working toward a world where the commute benefit is one of the most sought after and valued employee perks, on par with health benefits.

How did you get to where you are today?
In one word: teamwork. Achieving results with our customers such as a 10% drop in drive-alone rate in 1 year – in a 5,000 employee organization – is herculean, especially if you consider that same employer wasn’t able to move the needle in the 10 years prior to adopting Luum.  This accomplishment required solving complex problems, involving so many different functional domain experts and systematic execution.  It takes mobilizing action-oriented people, committed to serving each other in a way they’ve never done before to achieve a common goal.

How have you seen the TDM industry change?
I came of age in the TDM world beginning in 2012 when Luum was founded.  At my first ACT conference, I met attendees for whom the International conference was a regular mini-reunion 10+ times over. It was very daunting, as I wondered how on earth I and Luum would ever fit in and learn the craft of these TDM experts. Fast forward 5+ years . . . the breadth and complexity of topics covered; the number of new entrants into the space – from professionals to solution providers – has exploded.  I stand firm in the belief that this industry is THE most dynamic, interesting, high-societal impact of any other at this time in our history.   I believe we are still in the early stages of coming together as a collective to solve the problems we’re meant to solve.  Shout out here to ACT and members and partners for elevating the conversation, attracting professionals, and mentoring each other.

Where do you see the industry going in the next 10 years?
Employers are the fulcrum for moving entire regions toward their desired mobility future.  Because of the bond between employer and employee, it is employers that will influence the transition away from driving alone; toward electrification; toward sharing one day autonomous and ditching that second car. The commute benefits that employees experience will bleed into personal transportation and the community at-large.

What keeps you motivated?
The people I’m surrounded by every day keep me motivated.  A very typical day includes meeting with a customer about their organization’s growth and the role that Luum plays in attracting talent, making sure the worksite is accessible now and 3 years from now; meeting with prospective customers bringing about a complete mind-shift in the way they understand the value potential of commute to employees and their company;  launching partnerships to bring an even better commute experience to customers; meeting with a city transportation agency, NGO, and city council to turn their sustainability/smart-city/mobility futures powerpoint and white papers into action. . . and of course interacting with the Luum team: caring, talented, problem-solving/customer crazed individuals who are brought together around this mission.

What has been the most fulfilling moment in your career?
Hah . . . a bit of a blind spot of mine I suppose is – I thrive on that next milestone.  Being here – right now, knowing that Luum has a job to do today in service of our customers, that we have an extraordinary team that keeps getting more extraordinary with each new member, and that there are many more hard customer problems that we will uniquely solve through software . . . the answer to this question is: today I am the most fulfilled.  And tomorrow I expect to be even more so.

What is a great piece of advice you have received? Have you put it to use?
My parents exposed me to competitive cross-country ski racing as a kid.  Our high school team was fast – we were winning lots of races. I never forget my ski coach at the time telling us – success was that we pass the love of skiing and physical activity on to our kids.  I now do a lot of rowing, and just last week attended a breakfast fundraiser to get kids – especially in underserved communities – exposed to the sport of rowing. Because the sport will change your life.  And the call-to action was the same: all of us old people had our lives changed because of our experience in the boat.  Now, lets make sure the next generation has that same opportunity.   So – how do I act on this advice in my daily

life? Answer: Luum.  I appreciate that I, everyone at Luum, and everyone reading this – especially the ACT community – have the privilege, the responsibility and most important the tools to make our communities more livable by every metric for our next generation; to give kids access to transportation so they can get to activities; to give their parents that can’t afford housing in-city access to the well-paying hospital job that’s in the city. 

Image Credit: Hayley Young

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