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Recruitment then and now

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LSWR Cavalier

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There is plenty about current recruitment on these fora, interesting for me although I am retired
I know that many years ago one could start as a cleaner, then upgrade to fireman, then driving small engines...

How was recruitment in BR days, before the www, how has it changed? How might it change in future?

Back then people might have stayed on the railway all their working life. Do many do that now?
 
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Gloster

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I just asked about a job at Guildford and the reply was on the lines of, “When can you start?”. I think that in the late 1970s BR was generally short of staff in the low level jobs in the main urban areas due to more attractive opportunities elsewhere. This was less true in rural areas where BR often offered more secure and better paid employment than was otherwise available locally. BR was still a fairly low wage employer: if you couldn’t get overtime, you were down at the level of unskilled workers’ pay. You had to want to be on the railway or liked such perks as it offered to be keen to join.
 

43066

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There is plenty about current recruitment on these fora, interesting for me although I am retired
I know that many years ago one could start as a cleaner, then upgrade to fireman, then driving small engines...

How was recruitment in BR days, before the www, how has it changed? How might it change in future?

Back then people might have stayed on the railway all their working life. Do many do that now?

I don’t personally remember BR days but there are plenty knocking around who can. The biggest change in recent years was probably drivers being recruited “off the street”, rather than from other railway roles. IIRC this first started in the early 90s in the late BR era. This was controversial when it first started but in the end the proof of the pudding has been in the fact that the majority of drivers are now recruited in this way.

The industry also pays a lot better than it did under BR days, but a lot more is also expected in terms of professionalism, zero tolerance of mistakes, strict drug and alcohol policy etc. Recruitment has also been modernised in terms of appealing to a wider audience, bringing more women and ethnic minority candidates through.
 

High Dyke

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I commenced in the Railtrack era, but had previously applied during BR days. Hand writing out application forms, physical interviews/selection panels - not web based interviews. Being told your name would be kept on file for future vacancies in that location or trade. Little or no selection/aptitude tests (depending on the job applied for). in one case, for an internal job, I didn't even have an interview; I was just told to report to xx location at a particular time and a manager would come and pass me out. That wouldn't happen today.
 
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