Mmi failure

Choooochoooo

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Joined
28 Mar 2020
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6
Location
Middlesbrough
Evening chaps.

I’ve recently sat an assessment day with the OPC in Watford. I passed all the pen and paper tests to enhanced standard then passed all the computer tests on the afternoon. After the mmi I was told I would find out the results In 7-10 days via the rail company’s hr department. Anyhow 5 days later I was told via email I had failed and had to contact the OPC for any feedback. I did this via a phone call and was told my feedback could take 3-4 weeks. Anyhow the following day I got a call from one of the assessors and she told me to my surprise that I had passed all of the 6 questions but yet I had been failed on “communication”
She wouldn’t go into any more detail than this which is understandable but I just wondered if anyone on here has any idea what “communication” could be.

Not enough key words, to much waffle, not enough detail. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated as I aim to take the test again and pass
 
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Jon1930

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Joined
15 Jun 2019
Messages
48
Evening chaps.

I’ve recently sat an assessment day with the OPC in Watford. I passed all the pen and paper tests to enhanced standard then passed all the computer tests on the afternoon. After the mmi I was told I would find out the results In 7-10 days via the rail company’s hr department. Anyhow 5 days later I was told via email I had failed and had to contact the OPC for any feedback. I did this via a phone call and was told my feedback could take 3-4 weeks. Anyhow the following day I got a call from one of the assessors and she told me to my surprise that I had passed all of the 6 questions but yet I had been failed on “communication”
She wouldn’t go into any more detail than this which is understandable but I just wondered if anyone on here has any idea what “communication” could be.

Not enough key words, to much waffle, not enough detail. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated as I aim to take the test again and pass
Seems dodgy for that to happen, not everyone will agree with me but I think the opc is an external company so they will stitch anyone up who is good enough to pass so they'll come back 2nd time around and more money for the opc, I failed mmi in 2013, 1 year later passed with the same answers and more or less said the same things, I'm certain next time you'll pass and go on to be a train driver, good luck.
 

Dynamonic

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Joined
10 Jan 2013
Messages
622
Location
Nottinghamshire
Hi Choooochoooo,

Sorry to hear that you were unsuccessful in your MMI.

You could have failed on communication for any number of reasons. It could be that you weren’t speaking clearly enough, or that your answers (although obviously content-wise were reaching the standard) weren’t presented in a clear or concise enough fashion. It could be that you had to backtrack and fill in blanks in your answers before they made more sense.

To aid in communication, you should ensure you are using the STAR format in your answers, which is where you explain the Situation, state what your Task was, explain your Actions, and what the Results were.
It can be quite easy to drift from STAR when you’re feeling under pressure or are nervous. I spent hours vocalising full answers in front of a mirror to try and get some examples sounding properly structured before my (second) MMI attempt.

As crushing as failing at any stage of the driver recruitment process is (particularly the MMI), you must pick yourself up, review what you think you could do differently and just try again!:)

Try making notes now about your MMI whilst it’s fresh in your head too, to help with your prep later.
 

PickleTree

Member
Joined
10 Jan 2020
Messages
178
Location
Hampshire
Evening chaps.

I’ve recently sat an assessment day with the OPC in Watford. I passed all the pen and paper tests to enhanced standard then passed all the computer tests on the afternoon. After the mmi I was told I would find out the results In 7-10 days via the rail company’s hr department. Anyhow 5 days later I was told via email I had failed and had to contact the OPC for any feedback. I did this via a phone call and was told my feedback could take 3-4 weeks. Anyhow the following day I got a call from one of the assessors and she told me to my surprise that I had passed all of the 6 questions but yet I had been failed on “communication”
She wouldn’t go into any more detail than this which is understandable but I just wondered if anyone on here has any idea what “communication” could be.

Not enough key words, to much waffle, not enough detail. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated as I aim to take the test again and pass
Firstly great that you passed all of the computer and paper tests to an enhanced standard so take that as a positive. I found the MMI tough and found that they kept repeating parts of the question in order to see how I answered it each time to ensure that I wasn't making it up. I think it was also to see how I articulated the same answer numerous times. I am not a driver so I can't speak for them but I am waiting for a DMI and whilst reading up on skills expected etc communication comes up again and again. They talking about being able to communicate clearly with others such as signallers as this is a crucial part of the job it also could make the difference when handling an emergency situation. I can give you the answer but it could be as simple as clarity of your answers and as you say too much waffle was enough for them to fail you.

Good Luck for future applications this process can only help you.
 

Twotwo

Member
Joined
10 Aug 2018
Messages
386
Wow did not know you could pass all the questions and then fail due to something else? But if your communication was 'weak' then surely that would have impacted one or the q causing you to fail a question. I'm really sorry about this and it does seem very harsh!
 

LCC106

Member
Joined
16 Nov 2011
Messages
714
I personally would be pushing for the exact reason behind the failure on communication, especially if all other points were passed ok. From the outside looking in the OPC have failed to clearly communicate in their response! Seriously, I would press them for further clarification and if they are reluctant to share I would press them for contact details of the TOC or FOC so you can approach them directly. I wouldn’t necessarily advocate contacting the TOC / FOC but it might put a bit of pressure on the OPC... EDIT TO ADD I’m in one of “those“ moods today!
 

choochoochoo

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Joined
6 Aug 2013
Messages
669
Seems dodgy for that to happen, not everyone will agree with me but I think the opc is an external company so they will stitch anyone up who is good enough to pass so they'll come back 2nd time around and more money for the opc, I failed mmi in 2013, 1 year later passed with the same answers and more or less said the same things, I'm certain next time you'll pass and go on to be a train driver, good luck.
I agree with you. Totally in OPC interest to fail you and then get you to reapply and re-test. More chance they can get more money from that.

I did my MMI with OPC and failed. Did it again with in-house TOC assessor and passed. Used exactly same examples, as I knew they were good and the OPC previous feedback was vague and unhelpful.

Good luck to the OP
 

LCC106

Member
Joined
16 Nov 2011
Messages
714
I agree with you. Totally in OPC interest to fail you and then get you to reapply and re-test. More chance they can get more money from that.

I did my MMI with OPC and failed. Did it again with in-house TOC assessor and passed. Used exactly same examples, as I knew they were good and the OPC previous feedback was vague and unhelpful.

Good luck to the OP
I agree with both, hence my post to press for further info from OPC.
 

richfoz84

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Joined
13 Oct 2018
Messages
223
They have that many people come to assessments, as the job is so sought after, why would they fail you to get you back? If you did come back there’s someone else’s space that didn’t make it to the assessments (assuming they take a set number of applicants through each time)

with my MMI it was clear they were after buzz words and at points leading the conversation along to get me to say them. Remaining calm allowed me to see that and think what words are they looking for. It’s also important torefer to the star method when discussing your answers, it will help the answers flow logically.

also the MMI is formed on the questions answered before it, so maybe you answered them in a particular way but didn’t come across when explaining them the way you said you would handle / deal with situations or emergencies etc
 

choochoochoo

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6 Aug 2013
Messages
669
They have that many people come to assessments, as the job is so sought after, why would they fail you to get you back? If you did come back there’s someone else’s space that didn’t make it to the assessments (assuming they take a set number of applicants through each time)

with my MMI it was clear they were after buzz words and at points leading the conversation along to get me to say them. Remaining calm allowed me to see that and think what words are they looking for. It’s also important torefer to the star method when discussing your answers, it will help the answers flow logically.

also the MMI is formed on the questions answered before it, so maybe you answered them in a particular way but didn’t come across when explaining them the way you said you would handle / deal with situations or emergencies etc
The OPC is a business. It's aim is to make money. It's in their interest to carry out as many assessments as possible.

I'm sure the MMI costs the T/F-OCs a lot more than the computer/pen&paper tests seeing as it's a one-to-one with an assessor. I'd go as far to say that computer/pen&paper tests are probably charged per session (with a given max occupancy) rather than per candidate.

To get to the MMI someone has to pass the computer/pen&paper tests which isn't a certainty, whereas why not guarantee yourself a lucrative candidate by letting them pass everything and then failing them on an MMI so they can come back again.
 

Mgv1349

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Joined
10 Oct 2018
Messages
149
No chance they fail you on purpose, they will only fail you if you don’t meet criteria.

Seems like you’ve been very unlucky but try get some more feedback and I’m sure you’ll be ok next time.
 

Stigy

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6 Nov 2009
Messages
3,567
I don’t agree that they will fail you on purpose, this sounds a bit far fetched to be honest. It often depends on the assessor though, which, as with most situations, is more of a personal issue than a company ethos (much the same as people believing Civil Enforcement Officers get commission based on parking tickets issued I guess? It’s not usually the case these days). All the time you have the human element you’ll get inconsistencies. OPC test so many people each year, I very much doubt whether it would be in their interest to fail anyone just to get them to reapply. Will we ever know for sure though? Nope.

I’d imagine one has generally got far more chance of falling foul of positive discrimination at a papersift or a DMI....but that’s another argument :D
 

Jon1930

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15 Jun 2019
Messages
48
No chance they fail you on purpose, they will only fail you if you don’t meet criteria.

Seems like you’ve been very unlucky but try get some more feedback and I’m sure you’ll be ok next time.
I always thought that too, after meeting my brother in law who works as a driving examiner for DVLA and some of the stuff he has told me made me reconsider...corruption exists everywhere but nobody can prove it. I remember when I had my mmi and failed, 2nd time around i mentioned it in the interview and the interviewer at the end, smiled and said you'll get the good news very soon. I was out or there in 30 minutes and found out I passed a week later.
 

choochoochoo

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6 Aug 2013
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I don’t agree that they will fail you on purpose, this sounds a bit far fetched to be honest. It often depends on the assessor though, which, as with most situations, is more of a personal issue than a company ethos (much the same as people believing Civil Enforcement Officers get commission based on parking tickets issued I guess? It’s not usually the case these days). All the time you have the human element you’ll get inconsistencies. OPC test so many people each year, I very much doubt whether it would be in their interest to fail anyone just to get them to reapply. Will we ever know for sure though? Nope.

I’d imagine one has generally got far more chance of falling foul of positive discrimination at a papersift or a DMI....but that’s another argument :D
Herein lies the problem with the MMI. Psychometric competencies can be assessed in more objective ways. I believe there is a 500-1000 question questionnaire where you get asked the same/similar questions numerous times and have to state your response on a scale of 1-10. Using something like this would weed out the human weak link in the process.

At least until the DMI, but that's not going to use up any of your 2 lives.
 

choochoochoo

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I always thought that too, after meeting my brother in law who works as a driving examiner for DVLA and some of the stuff he has told me made me reconsider...corruption exists everywhere but nobody can prove it. I remember when I had my mmi and failed, 2nd time around i mentioned it in the interview and the interviewer at the end, smiled and said you'll get the good news very soon. I was out or there in 30 minutes and found out I passed a week later.
Where money is involved there will always be pressure to do the wrong thing for financial gain.
 

Dynamonic

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10 Jan 2013
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622
Location
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Top quality communication skills are a must in the safe operating of the railway, and are assessed throughout the recruitment process.
The OPC aren’t out to fail you, but you must hit their standard. Just learn from your MMI, work out where you can improve, and when you feel ready, try again.
 

choochoochoo

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669
Other than in house testing by a few TOC/FOCs, the OPC has a monopoly does it not ? And Monopolies are no good for anyone apart from the owner.
 
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4F89

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17 Aug 2018
Messages
431
Sounds like a lot of sour grapes in here. The OPC have plenty of candidates, they won't fail for sake of it. Sometimes, after 2 attempts, people don't make the grade. 1st try is a practice, get used to the questions, the nerves etc. There are no second chances when out on your own.
 

choochoochoo

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6 Aug 2013
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Hardly sour grapes when you've made it through the process. OPC are not infallible. Just because they have plenty of candidates doesn't mean they're not susceptible to greed that comes with testing and charging more candidates.

The ORR or whoever regulates them needs to let in another competitor.
 

John Bishop

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15 Nov 2018
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147
Hardly sour grapes when you've made it through the process. OPC are not infallible. Just because they have plenty of candidates doesn't mean they're not susceptible to greed that comes with testing and charging more candidates.

The ORR or whoever regulates them needs to let in another competitor.
Except you haven't made it through the process as you stated you failed the MMI. A bit of a conspiracy theory going on here. How about you take it on the chin and focus on securing another chance to pass the process and get a driving job rather than second guess the intent of recruitment companies.

Good luck!
 

HLE

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27 Dec 2013
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The only interview that you could end up being failed on purpose is the DMI. Could be due to too many getting through, not enough vacancies, wrong working background etc. But that's the same as any company interview.
 

iwasyoungonce

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15 Dec 2019
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43
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uk
For my MMI I wrote examples to 6 scenarios on a sheet of paper (just a couple of very brief lines) I was then asked to expand in an interview on the 6 answers and explain in my own words why ,what, when, how etc.
As everything you say is written down and evidenced can't see how its not a fair process.
 

12guard4

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23 Jul 2015
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278
It is a fair process, you either pass or fail if you're good enough or not. Rather than moaning online try and fix your faults and go again next time.
 

Applepie356

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23 Sep 2019
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67
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Swanley
To be fair, “communication” is a bit vague. It’s a shame they can’t go into more detail than that.

Could it mean you didn’t communicate your answers correctly? Or you didn’t express examples of communication in your answers? Inconsistent answers? Lack of eye contact or clear voice? Would be nice if they narrowed it down.
 

choochoochoo

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6 Aug 2013
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Except you haven't made it through the process as you stated you failed the MMI. A bit of a conspiracy theory going on here. How about you take it on the chin and focus on securing another chance to pass the process and get a driving job rather than second guess the intent of recruitment companies.

Good luck!
Actually I have, using the same examples and approach that I used in the MMI I 'failed' first time.
 

choochoochoo

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6 Aug 2013
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For my MMI I wrote examples to 6 scenarios on a sheet of paper (just a couple of very brief lines) I was then asked to expand in an interview on the 6 answers and explain in my own words why ,what, when, how etc.
As everything you say is written down and evidenced can't see how its not a fair process.
But who has ever reviewed what they've written ? Definitely not the candidates. And seeing as they're not regulated, and you can't appeal what is the point in it being written down ? The assessor might just be writing their shopping list for sainsburys.
 

Stigy

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Actually I have, using the same examples and approach that I used in the MMI I 'failed' first time.
I’m confused now. So have you had an MMI before? I assume if so, this just ‘timed out’, As you say you have met the standard before?

It’s not necessarily the fact that the examples weren’t strong enough, in fact, judging by your feedback, it sounds like they were good examples? It’s how you communicate the responses to any probing questions that counts just as much.
 

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