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Conductor duties on Non-DOO services

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mbreckers

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Hey folks, hoping yous can help me with a question.

Aside from Manual announcements, door operation and train despatch, and ticket checks/sales; what other duties is it normal for a Conductor on a non-DOO service to have?
 
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TheManBehind

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You'll normally be PTS-trained as well if it's a non-DOO service, and all responsibilities that come with that.

Fault-reporting of stock is extremely helpful for those of us in control, as well as keeping your info team updated on any issues with your formation (wrong way round etc).

Some TOCs (anecdotally I may add - don't know many guards on other operators) may ask that you help keep your train clean (basic litter picking, I used to do it on my trains anyway without being asked!).
 
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Helping with luggage, passengers with special needs, passenger assistance, resolving customer complaints, dealing with knackered toilets and doors, assisting the trolly if needs be, being the welcoming face of the TOC.
 

387star

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Rachel
Conductor

"Tickets Please!" - what most people will think of first when considering the role of a Conductor or Guard. But with safety critical and customer service tasks there is no denying it is much more than that and at times, hard work with unsociable hours. Dealing with the public on a daily basis and being responsible for their wellbeing, comfort and timekeeping - being pulled in different directions, answering everybody's questions and being expected to know the answers - it is often a far cry from what people have previously done. I joined the railway in July 2005 on a 2 year customer service work course, gaining experience on the platform and the ticket office before training for the Conductor role in 2008 (4 out of 6 of us who did this course are now conductors).

The role of the Conductor is extremely involved, incorporating safety, customer service, time keeping and revenue protection / collection responsibilities. The overall aim of the initial training course is to ensure that you are able to consistently and professionally deliver each part of these responsibilities within the company and national guidelines, and as such there is a comprehensive 4 month course based in Norwich, to give you the necessary skills and experience to qualify as a Conductor.

Members of the Conductor Management Team are always available for support and guidance - both during your training and throughout your railway career - and you will be allocated your direct Line Manager almost as soon as you start. However, as you work virtually alone and in charge of your own actions and timekeeping, you must be a responsible, conscientious and pro-active individual, with the desire to take on the responsibility of managing a train and its passengers, whether there are just a few on a small rural service, or up to 600 on a peak time ‘Intercity'.

No day is ever the same; on some days the sun is shining and everything goes to time, people are pleasant and everything works; on other days there are delays and train failures, disgruntled and unhappy passengers who expect you to resolve all their issues within minutes, not to mention what is causing the delays outside! But by not taking these complaints personally and being seen to be doing everything in a calm and orderly fashion, I have been able to consistently perform to a high standard and gain a Level 2 NVQ for my efforts as well as letters of praise and vouchers as a token of appreciation for my hard work.

A Conductors' role is the most interesting and varied on the railway; we are responsible for the safe movement of the train, its timekeeping, checking and selling tickets while smiling and giving great customer service - often being the only face of the company that our passengers interact with. People travel to get to a particular destination, whether it is for business or pleasure, and I always like to try and make the journey part of that experience relaxing and enjoyable, as mixing with the public and sharing their experience helps to make my day pleasurable as well. It is extremely rewarding and often very enjoyable, and at the end of the day you can go home with a feeling of a job well done, but without having to take the job home with you.
 

LowLevel

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Much depends on the company and routes you work over.

My some of my various day to day tasks on a mix of rural, interurban and long distance regional services include:

Opening and closing the doors
Checking tickets
Dealing with enquiries
Assisting disabled passengers
Dealing with train faults and reporting them to control - off my own back for things like the doors, heating, lighting etc and assisting the driver with other issues more in their area of responsibility. Carrying out wheel rotation tests to check for seized axles or brakes being locked on.
Reporting station faults like faulty ticket machines to the train operator and signalling faults like off indicator or TRTS failure to Network Rail.
Logging incident, delay and accident reports and managing those incidents as required. This can be anything from a passenger cutting their finger to laying emergency train protection following a collision.
My colleagues at other depots operate groundframes and get involved with shunting units.
Putting out seat reservations.

There's much more to it than that as well but it's a flavour. It differs from day to day.
 
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