overheads interview

Discussion in 'Railway Jobs & Careers' started by Ladder23, 24 Nov 2019.

  1. Ladder23

    Ladder23 Member

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    hi all,

    I been with network rail now for 5/6 years, I'm generally on the ball with interviews and have always managed to get by even on things I wasn't sure on when asked, as I am always happy to give things a go and I usually pick up on things quickly.

    I am currently working for S&T, which I am open to say I don't particular enjoy, its been 4/5 months now and I have tried but I simply can't get into it. I came over from pway where I reached a high level and I knew everything about the job and I am a little lost having that taken away from me, I LOVED it, but left for circumstances I don't need to discuss as its not relevant.

    However I have since looked at other jobs and managed to bag a interview in a week or so for a overheads role, it will no doubt be a decrease wage, but I think the job is more hands on and its another shot at something I could possibly enjoy. I am curious what sort of ball park questions I could come up against, I know with the s&t interview I was given a metre we use on a regular basis and asked to explain the didn't options on it, which i struggled with but I got by.. is there any basic equipment in the overhead role I could brush up my knowledge with?

    ranted on a little - but wanted you guys to be aware I am familiar with the company, its just the role itself.

    ta
     
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  3. MT18

    MT18 Member

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    Just out of curiosity, what part of the S&T role are you not particularly liking? I moved over to S&T in July from off track and quite enjoy it.
     
  4. Ladder23

    Ladder23 Member

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    Our work in general is very boring (I find), everything seems to be working with a metre around fuses etc, sitting in reb’s and locs for hours on end I find it head banging.

    I enjoy points maintenance at a push and that’s really about it, I think it comes down to being part of a very hands on job beforehand and now going to this it’s more so using your brains not your hands.

    Also not to mention I still haven’t had a date for my Signals maintenance 1 course (SEM1?).

    I just think if I have a opportunity to change and be closer to home, it can’t be any worse than now?
     
  5. The BIgman1234

    The BIgman1234 Member

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    I remember applying for the OHL dept many moons ago . My day a railwayman for over 42 years went off his head lol . Said it’s the worst job in the railway and he wouldn’t wish it on his worst enemy lol . Fortunately I never got the job and moved into signalling instead . Now I know the S&T are out in all weathers fixing faults but these guys can be out for hours at a time fixing tear downs . For the most they seem to spend most of the day doing track patrols and then some maintenance at night . Do you not fancy being a signaller ? Am being biased here but it really is a great job with plenty variety and no two days are the same .
     
  6. Ladder23

    Ladder23 Member

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    I enjoy the fact every day is different, that’s what I really do like, tonight for instance I have a email of what to do, but it’s common for a fault to come in and take priority, but the work usually always falls down to the same old stuff. I miss being more involved, getting my hands dirty, you know? It’s weird I feel pway really was my job, but the money/ some other issues kind of forced me away, unfortunately where I was before I couldn’t go higher, it would be years before I could get a team leaders role.
     
  7. MT18

    MT18 Member

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    Ahh right I see, to be honest I struggled when I first moved over not being hands on as much, but I have recently been booked on my SEM1 and SEM2 courses and my TO has been getting me more involved teaching me a lot.

    I’m going to be honest with you, if you are moving out of boredom to the overheads department, expect much of the same if not doing even less. Also their roster compared to ours in my depot isn’t very good. We have a few guys who have moved to us from overheads.

    I’d recommend either going back to PWAY or try to get a S&T works delivery delivery job if you want to get your hands dirty.
     
  8. steverailer

    steverailer Member

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    TBH, if its a maintenance depot then you'll be bored on OLE. From what I've seen when assisting them they mostly do basic maintenance checks with very little actual work required other than a visual. Also rip downs are, luckily, few and far between so not much real hands on stuff. Of the 3 depots I've assisted (based across the country) its mostly been turn up, sit in the yard for a couple of hours, go to access, wait an hour, get on track and do the work (couple of hours), off track and back to the yard and wait for shift end. Saturdays can be longer on track but basically doing the same checks.
     
  9. M84

    M84 Member

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    This is very interesting. I applied for a P Way NW apprenticeship but was offered OH lines. Everyone tells me OH is better and P Way is an absolute killer physically.

    Start in March but very excited to learn a bit about all the areas before going to my depot.

    Hope you find something you like!
     
  10. GuyGibsonVC

    GuyGibsonVC Member

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    Generally, OHL is higher paid than the other disciplines. An OHL Technician starts on around £30,000 - £32,000 before shift allowance and overtime. At my place, they have a very favourable roster due to the need for 24 hour cover. It is 12 hour shifts either 0700 - 1900 or 1900 - 0700 and plenty of Rest Day Working. Generally, the day shift sit about, do a bit of patrolling if they can get on and then do more sitting about. Night shift either do maintenance work or support other work with isolation requests. It is a good number.
     
  11. M84

    M84 Member

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    That sounds good.

    Is there a reason OHL is better paid? And is there generally much travel from your depot to jobs?

    As Ladder23 says, S&T just seems a bit too theory based wheras OHL seems like a good mix of theory but also physical work...but not too physical.

    Thanks
     
  12. GuyGibsonVC

    GuyGibsonVC Member

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    It depends on the size of the area that the section covers. Up here in the frozen North, we cover from the Scottish Border all the way down to Thirsk in North Yorkshire. It is a big patch, a lot of driving, hence the 12 hour shifts.

    I've no idea why the pay seems to be higher in OHL. It is probably something that was agreed years ago.
     
  13. Jay_123

    Jay_123 Member

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    As said above a great deal of OLE maintenance is patrols, being on response, a lot of isolations for other nwr workers etc. It is an easy number, however don’t expect to learn a lot and get a lot of hands on experience. Ive found when sh1* hits the fan and they have a tear down, the most experienced get in the basket and get the job done minimizing delays. Can be hard for a newcomer. Its not all negatives to be honest there is good parts but it varies for different people.
     
  14. M84

    M84 Member

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    Oh I thought it would involve setting up new sections of OLE equipment for some reason.

    I do have a friend in planning with NW and he spent a lot of time doing trackside, he thinks OLE is probably the best discipline but did mention there's a fair bit of waiting about and travelling.

    I think I'd be a bit disappointed if it were all patrols and not much hands on work though as I like the physical element of a job but not to the point of packing ballast and replacing sleepers.
     
  15. Jay_123

    Jay_123 Member

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    Yeah forgot to add there is plenty of waiting about. In worksites as well, your usually first on and last off. They will replace old stuff if it gets too worn etc but if you want pure OLE construction, OCR(overhead condition renewals) is where you want to be. Although ive heard its very difficult to get on there.
     

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