A career as a signaller

Pancakes84

Member
Joined
26 Aug 2020
Messages
24
Location
England
Hope you're all having a great and safe weekend!

Just wanted to say that after 12 years of applying, I've finally managed to successfully get the job of Signaller Grade 3.

Lurking around here has given me some valuable tips. For those who are still going through the grind, I'm afraid the crux advice is true: if you fail, keep applying. Believe or not, there are little nuggets every time that help improve your chances each time. It's easier said than done, no doubt, but one day it will happen.

Anyway, cheers for helping me out. Can't wait to start in January!
Amazing!!!
Congratulations and all the best!
 
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gareth386

Member
Joined
20 Nov 2017
Messages
77
Hope you're all having a great and safe weekend!

Just wanted to say that after 12 years of applying, I've finally managed to successfully get the job of Signaller Grade 3.

Lurking around here has given me some valuable tips. For those who are still going through the grind, I'm afraid the crux advice is true: if you fail, keep applying. Believe or not, there are little nuggets every time that help improve your chances each time. It's easier said than done, no doubt, but one day it will happen.

Anyway, cheers for helping me out. Can't wait to start in January!
Congratulations, that's amazing news
 

EGPWS#2

Member
Joined
19 Aug 2020
Messages
10
Location
Hampshire
A question for the wise old owls on here.. Applied for St Blazey a while back and was lucky enough to be invited to interview. over 120 applicants and only 4 interviewed so even though I received the dreaded 'unsuccessful' email, I nevertheless was pleased to have got so far. However I now see that the vacancy is now listed again under the exact same reference with a January close date. Is it possible for even at interview stage for not one person to be offered the job? I also see that I cannot reapply for the position which seems odd?

Thanks in advance
 

Toots

Member
Joined
24 Oct 2009
Messages
275
A question for the wise old owls on here.. Applied for St Blazey a while back and was lucky enough to be invited to interview. over 120 applicants and only 4 interviewed so even though I received the dreaded 'unsuccessful' email, I nevertheless was pleased to have got so far. However I now see that the vacancy is now listed again under the exact same reference with a January close date. Is it possible for even at interview stage for not one person to be offered the job? I also see that I cannot reapply for the position which seems odd?

Thanks in advance
Yes it certainly is possible.In your case it may simply be your location,which you state as Hampshire.If they weren't satisfied you'd make it to St Blazey for each shift (the supposed criteria is within an hour of your workplace,although we all know people who are more than that),then you could of been refused it on that basis.But it certainly happens whereby jobs are readvertized because they couldn't find the person they wanted.
 

EGPWS#2

Member
Joined
19 Aug 2020
Messages
10
Location
Hampshire
Yes it certainly is possible.In your case it may simply be your location,which you state as Hampshire.If they weren't satisfied you'd make it to St Blazey for each shift (the supposed criteria is within an hour of your workplace,although we all know people who are more than that),then you could of been refused it on that basis.But it certainly happens whereby jobs are readvertized because they couldn't find the person they wanted.
Thank Toots. However my application stated that I would move for the position and this was confirmed at interview when I explained that I was already in the process of renting my house out. Is it worth enquiring with HR, not least because the requested feedback from LOM has not arrived yet? Out of the few interviews I've had its the one I really wanted.
 

Toots

Member
Joined
24 Oct 2009
Messages
275
Thank Toots. However my application stated that I would move for the position and this was confirmed at interview when I explained that I was already in the process of renting my house out. Is it worth enquiring with HR, not least because the requested feedback from LOM has not arrived yet? Out of the few interviews I've had its the one I really wanted.
Enquiring with HR would raise many eyebrows among your future colleagues on here.To be honest,and it may be different where you are,there is very little confidence in anything relating to HR.My advice ,if you aren't precluded from applying for all Signalling jobs,just that one, is to keep applying for anything and everything.You must be doing something right to get to the last four. Once in and passed out you can attempt the equally frustrating task of moving to a location or job that you do want.
One good note is that I've been told they are taking on loads of Signallers at locations where ther are no vacancies to cover the reduction in the maximum working (we've just got two recently).
 

nom de guerre

Member
Joined
24 Nov 2015
Messages
721
Thank Toots. However my application stated that I would move for the position and this was confirmed at interview when I explained that I was already in the process of renting my house out. Is it worth enquiring with HR, not least because the requested feedback from LOM has not arrived yet? Out of the few interviews I've had its the one I really wanted.

Can't hurt to ask. But as you've already experienced to some degree, HR are not always the quickest to respond (especially at present)...
 

Chicksands

New Member
Joined
2 Dec 2020
Messages
1
Location
Evesham
Hi folks.

This thread has been awesome in supporting insight and applications to become a signaller, thanks to all who've contributed!

I've applied for many signaller roles in recent months, and all have ultimately come back unsuccessful. For the first application I completed the online questionnaire and submitted my CV, I completed the online assessments and was advised I reached the required benchmark which would then be banked for subsequent applications, but I haven't been successful in being shortlisted for interview for any. After the stage at which the test scores have been attached and the application further considered, I have been unsuccessful with a message:

"All applications have now been reviewed against the specific role criteria by the Hiring Manager. I am sorry to advise you that on this occasion your application did not meet the required criteria and will therefore, not be progressed further."

I've had a look through the information in this thread and can't find definitive guidance on what I may be failing at (apologies if I've missed the information). Is anyone able to shed any light on how the application process works as you progress through the stages, and what is considered for shortlisting at each stage? Does the interview shortlisting look back over the 70 question online questionnaire or my CV? Or am I failing on my test scores, as whilst they're above the benchmark they may be less than other applicants being considered - do they purely take the top scores and interview those applicants? Am I doomed with my test scores until the 12month period has passed and I can redo them?

Any and all insight and guidance gratefully received, thanks in advance!

Mat
 

Gallius

Member
Joined
10 Nov 2019
Messages
91
Location
Uk
Hi folks.

This thread has been awesome in supporting insight and applications to become a signaller, thanks to all who've contributed!

I've applied for many signaller roles in recent months, and all have ultimately come back unsuccessful. For the first application I completed the online questionnaire and submitted my CV, I completed the online assessments and was advised I reached the required benchmark which would then be banked for subsequent applications, but I haven't been successful in being shortlisted for interview for any. After the stage at which the test scores have been attached and the application further considered, I have been unsuccessful with a message:

"All applications have now been reviewed against the specific role criteria by the Hiring Manager. I am sorry to advise you that on this occasion your application did not meet the required criteria and will therefore, not be progressed further."

I've had a look through the information in this thread and can't find definitive guidance on what I may be failing at (apologies if I've missed the information). Is anyone able to shed any light on how the application process works as you progress through the stages, and what is considered for shortlisting at each stage? Does the interview shortlisting look back over the 70 question online questionnaire or my CV? Or am I failing on my test scores, as whilst they're above the benchmark they may be less than other applicants being considered - do they purely take the top scores and interview those applicants? Am I doomed with my test scores until the 12month period has passed and I can redo them?

Any and all insight and guidance gratefully received, thanks in advance!

Mat
I think it depends on what the hiring manager is looking for and who else applies. Last year I applied for approx. 10 Signaller roles over the space of a couple of months, most were grade 2, one a 6 and an 8. I used the same application answers for them all and I was only invited to interview for (and offered) one which was the grade 8. If you think you have the competencies required to do the job then keep applying and eventually a job offer will come. There's not necessarily anything wrong with your application as such, there are a lot of high calibre candidates applying for the roles so competition is tough.
 

Kraken

Member
Joined
22 Mar 2020
Messages
185
Location
Lincolnshire
I think it depends on what the hiring manager is looking for and who else applies. Last year I applied for approx. 10 Signaller roles over the space of a couple of months, most were grade 2, one a 6 and an 8. I used the same application answers for them all and I was only invited to interview for (and offered) one which was the grade 8. If you think you have the competencies required to do the job then keep applying and eventually a job offer will come. There's not necessarily anything wrong with your application as such, there are a lot of high calibre candidates applying for the roles so competition is tough.

This is exactly right I reckon. The application I ended up getting an interview and a job offer for was substantially exactly the same as the one that I used when I got flat rejections for multiple other signaller positions. I think eventually I applied for a job where the LOM happened to like my application whereas the LOMs for the other roles clearly didn’t like one or more aspects of them. Or the people that applied for those jobs had way better applications than me.

Honestly as long as you are confident in the quality of your CV and question answers it probably then becomes a numbers game. If you haven’t already get somebody you trust to honestly critique your application though.

I don’t think it’s an exact science and there will always be a large chunk of human subjectivity that you cannot really prepare for unless you happen to know what the recruiting LOM happens to like to see in an application. Good luck!!
 

Rockhopper

Member
Joined
29 Apr 2019
Messages
625
Your CV and your covering letter need to include as many of the key words used in the job description as possible.
 

86206

Member
Joined
12 Jan 2015
Messages
33
So finally after 5 months of waiting heard off HR regarding an earlier application for boxes on Cotswold line. Sadly I do not meet the criteria for the vacancies...which is ironic because my previous Signalling experience mainly as a grade 3 for around 9 years doesn't count for anything then, and even more ironic that the majority of the time was on the same line! Still without going into more detail than is necessary (for specific reasons) if sh*t happens it usually sticks, regardless of innocence. Done with applying now & so sorry to sound negative and dejected, but its not worth my hopes being raised time & again just to have them extinguished. :(
 

SignallerJohn

Member
Joined
19 Dec 2017
Messages
130
So finally after 5 months of waiting heard off HR regarding an earlier application for boxes on Cotswold line. Sadly I do not meet the criteria for the vacancies...which is ironic because my previous Signalling experience mainly as a grade 3 for around 9 years doesn't count for anything then, and even more ironic that the majority of the time was on the same line! Still without going into more detail than is necessary (for specific reasons) if sh*t happens it usually sticks, regardless of innocence. Done with applying now & so sorry to sound negative and dejected, but its not worth my hopes being raised time & again just to have them extinguished. :(
There could be various reasons for this......

maybe someone was put into the job after their box closed, a candidate on a secondment, someone else had x experience. there’s so many variables mate

if you want it you can apply for other roles. It’s a competitive role now as you know because of the job and how good it is, especially with covid many people are applying. I don’t know anyone who applied first time andgot a job!
 
Joined
24 Sep 2020
Messages
8
Location
london
a question to those in the grades for longer: is it a common move from an operative/technician position to a signaller? (more specifically, S&T operative or technician)

I understand that the knowledge about safety, possession, and how the signaling systems work could be advantageous on the selection process, but how many of your colleagues come from the tracks?
 

Sunset route

Member
Joined
27 Oct 2015
Messages
1,085
a question to those in the grades for longer: is it a common move from an operative/technician position to a signaller? (more specifically, S&T operative or technician)

I understand that the knowledge about safety, possession, and how the signaling systems work could be advantageous on the selection process, but how many of your colleagues come from the tracks?

Out of an establishment of 78 signallers we have one in training that took that career path.
 

Rockhopper

Member
Joined
29 Apr 2019
Messages
625
You can apply just like anyone else but they will expect much more out of you in terms of answers to your interview questions. You’ll have access to the internal jobs list as well I imagine.
 

Jetsetter

Member
Joined
15 Oct 2020
Messages
16
Location
London
Hello everyone,

I’ve been fortunate enough to be offered a G9 signaller role and just wondered how long it was before the arrival of contracts and a formal written offer. I received a verbal offer around 4 weeks ago and haven’t received anything in writing and am getting a bit concerned. After jumping through all the hoops I worry that it may no come to fruition.

Thanks,
 

Toots

Member
Joined
24 Oct 2009
Messages
275

a question to those in the grades for longer: is it a common move from an operative/technician position to a signaller? (more specifically, S&T operative or technician)

I understand that the knowledge about safety, possession, and how the signaling systems work could be advantageous on the selection process, but how many of your colleagues come from the tracks?

My oppo in the next box is ex P way,and I know s guy in Carlisle box who was S&T.You'd have an advantage because you know how the job works via possessions and disconnections etc,and a big plus is the emphasis on comms which you should be well versed in.
 
Last edited:

Rigchick

Member
Joined
5 May 2019
Messages
49
Hello everyone,

I’ve been fortunate enough to be offered a G9 signaller role and just wondered how long it was before the arrival of contracts and a formal written offer. I received a verbal offer around 4 weeks ago and haven’t received anything in writing and am getting a bit concerned. After jumping through all the hoops I worry that it may no come to fruition.

Thanks,
Hi Jetsetter, I had my interview mid May, got the phone call 4 days later to give me the good news. It then took until the start of July to get my formal offer and another month to get a start date. As has been said many times, HR do not work quickly. Patience is definitely a virtue! :)
 

Toots

Member
Joined
24 Oct 2009
Messages
275
Hello everyone,

I’ve been fortunate enough to be offered a G9 signaller role and just wondered how long it was before the arrival of contracts and a formal written offer. I received a verbal offer around 4 weeks ago and haven’t received anything in writing and am getting a bit concerned. After jumping through all the hoops I worry that it may no come to fruition.

Thanks,
Grade 9 off the street?...I'm not sure I'd use the word 'fortunate ' just yet!:D
 

Toots

Member
Joined
24 Oct 2009
Messages
275
I do like a challenge, it’ll be fun...won’t it :)
To be honest it's s fair old task.It's completely different from a traditional signalbox,the new ROCs are more akin to call centres than signalboxes and as a grade 9 I'm betting its an ROC or an IECC, Kings x perhaps?.Either way it's grade 9 for a reason so challenge is certainly an apt word.Most of the fun has gone out of the job with the obsession for delay attribution and the desire to apportion blame.The good news is,you'll earn a fortune,so plan that holiday you've always wanted!
 

Kenuff

New Member
Joined
19 Sep 2019
Messages
3
Location
Par
Hi all,

I am applying to be a signaller. This is not my first attempt - i have applied several times and have only been invited to interview once. Now some of my online assessments have expired so I am seeing this as an opportunity to increase my online test scores.

Can you recommend any resources to prepare for the online assessments?

I have been trying out the practice tests on the SHL site, and also trawling through youtube for tips, but the videos on there are usually quite general and not focussed on what i might encounter. I have seen a number of websites offering advice and resources for a fee... Are they worth it?

Thanks for any advice you can give! And sorry if this question has already been asked.

Cheers
 

Cityhedgehog

Member
Joined
15 Dec 2019
Messages
9
Location
Tewkesbury
Well.. After all the hard work and the seemingly never ending waiting game I finally have my start date! 8th Feb at WMSC. Are any of you glorious people joining me?

For those wondering what time scales were like... I applied in early July, interview beginning of September, told I was successful end of that week, formal offer mid November along with a super quick turn around for the medical and security checks. I got my start date this week. So... Hang in there!!
 

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