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It’s official! Ridesharing is coming to Philly.

A new law was recently passed that will make UberX and Lyft legal in Philadelphia, and Governor Tom Wolf has said that he intends to sign the bill. Once that happens, ride-sharing companies will be allowed to operate anywhere in Pennsylvania.Photo: ZDNET.com

As a part of the new law, UberX and Lyft are required to share a small portion of their revenue with the Philadelphia school district, so that’s an added bonus. And schools aren’t the only ones who will benefit from the situation. Philadelphia businesses should see some positive results as well.

How, you ask? Well, let’s just take a look:

Transportation for big, corporate events

Philadelphia is host to a lot of major corporate events, like the CIO Executive Leadership Summit that just happened. People traveling to Philadelphia need transportation, and during big events, there is a limited amount available. This new law opens up a wide range of options for those incoming businesspeople, meaning rental cars and taxis won’t be booked solid, months in advance.

Business meetings

Imagine a scenario, if you will: This morning, you drove into work way too early, but you still had to fight traffic on I-676 to get in. People were laying on the horn, dangerously changing lanes at the last second (“Use a blinker, buddy!”), and essentially making traffic an all-around nightmare. But as you pull into your usually-overcrowded parking lot, you see it. Some developer who’s been burning the midnight oil is going home just as you pull into the packed lot, and he pulls out of that coveted parking spot right by the door—you know the one. Suddenly, as you pull into that spot, which fits your car perfectly, the day doesn’t seem quite so grim.

That is, it doesn’t until you walk to your desk and see a reminder up on your screen of that business meeting you have across town. You could go back downstairs and give up your spot only to face the stress of that traffic again… or you could use your smartphone to hail a ride and let someone else worry about it while your car waits for you, nice and cozy in its comfortable spot, right by the door when it’s time to go home for the day.

Team-building activities

It’s important for business teams to get to know each other outside of the work environment. Sometimes, it’s a good idea to take the team out for an activity to build relationships. It makes work go more smoothly if people have some common ground to build on. Maybe you want to educate your team by taking them to a sales training or seminar; or you want to take everyone to see an IMAX movie at the Franklin Institute; or maybe you’re all going go-karting. No one really ever wants to be the one to drive in a big group like that, and a lot of the team-building takes place on the way to and from the activity. Instead, call in a driver with a van that can fit everyone and focus more on talking and getting to know each other than on the road. (The angry driving can wait until you get to the go-kart track.)

Provide pre-paid transportation for visiting clients

If you’ve got an important client visiting from out of town, you want to be able to impress them. Both ride-sharing services have business options with tools set up so that you can utilize your company’s expense account to pre-pay for their transportation around town. They even have luxury services available for those clients to whom you want to go the extra mile.

This new setup is going to be a good thing for Philadelphia businesses, both for individual workers and for companies as a whole. It might even attract new business. Sure, it won’t be the main reason any company decides to move to Philly, but it’s definitely an added bonus. And with the availability of transportation, it’s definitely an attractive prospect for conferences and other big events.

Cameron Johnson is a business consultant and social media expert. Over the course of his career he has conducted case studies on both social media optimization and non-profit marketing. Cameron has also had the opportunity to speak at international marketing conferences and was recently recognized as one of the world’s top 100 advertising experts to follow on social media.

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Photo: ZDNET.com