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Discussion in 'Railway Jobs & Careers' started by SPADTrap, 24 May 2019.
I don't really know what this is, but it might be helpful..
Looks like it's from the RDG in relation to the new course delivery.
A new centralised method of recruitment and training?
Pretty much. It's being trialled at Northern on the East (not sure about west) basically the emphasis is on self learning. Part one is essentially rules that govern the railway. This allows TOC A to teach TOC Bs trainees as it's industry wide.
Self learning! Budget training then.
Well it's e learning but may as well be self.
A similar thing happened down south and was a sham. The RDG have really seemed to have thought about this and whilst I'm not personally sold it looks ok. Proof is on the pudding
Next step self funding training as per airlines, or a pre application qualification like the police.
Totally agree, feel this is something we should all be concerned about. On the road to private self funded training is something most people dont want to see on the railways.
The eLearning course was attempted down our way too. It failed miserably.
OH MY !"£¬"$£¬£"$£$
I know those people :/ Please Jebus don't let this crap be introduced at my TOC.
Not contradicting what you say as I genuinely don't know, but how was it judged to be a failure and by whom?
The trainees who took the save money and time course and then proceeded to be passed out only to riddle themselves with safety of the line incidents, including many on that very website. How many SPADs this year, LNER?
You take on people and cost cut their training that's what happens, ask GTR.
I'll bet it can be administered well and be effective but my experience says it's for cost and time cutting purposes.
They started it and it became unworkable. It was quite clear about halfway through that it just wasn't working. The entire thing was cancelled. eLearning has various issues that will need to be resolved.
One of our Drivers was on the Network Rail run course that was run for a group of new entrants across various TOCs. This was part of the idea that Training Schools could be run outside of the TOCs and from a more centralised location. There would be a pool of Trainees who would already be rules trained and ready to start local rules, traction and manual handling. This idea kinda works and would lead to the inital process taken out of TOC control and essentially create a pathway where you pay to attend a course and gain a rules qualification before applying to a TOC. We almost outsourced our entire Training School but due to cost it was cancelled. IF a "Training Academy" was created then it could open up recruitment on a national level.
Whatever happens, its very clear that they wish to reduce the cost for the TOCs, provide vocational qualifications to the driving grade, and to open up the pathway to self funded training.
An interesting future ahead.
Personally I see a risk to existing drivers that if this scheme is adopted as the norm, some operators might well favour the new bread as it were over experienced non qualification holding candidates for qualified driver positions.
I would have thought a training course to take a trainee from point zero to traction and routes ready would be close to at least £80,000-£100,000 depending on rules complexity.
A nice little money earner for all the new rules course sponsor aka finance companies, or a serious salary drain on trainees if a TOC sponsors their training like BA do.
We really do not want or need a grade or people who have to be debt ridden, or funded by the bank of mum and dad, I think someone is trying to solve a problem that doesn’t need solving.
Didn’t the railway have a training course back in the bad old days, called being a 2nd man ?
I concur with TQ
Pilots are now almost exclusively kids of rich parents. It's get a massive loan, that only those with rich parents could afford to secure, or fly in the military first.
The last thing we need is train driving to go the same way
Thanks both, that is interesting and by anyone's standards one would think that an increase in incidents at one operator and the course being abandoned elsewhere would be deemed a failure.
I wonder if the lure of cost savings and "lessons learned" has been enough to assuage concerns...
At the moment, Train Driver, as a job rôle, is open to people of all backgrounds. If it ever became a 'pay for your own training' model like Airline Pilot, then all the inclusiveness it currently enjoys will be kissed goodbye.
Anyone from a poorer background won't be able to afford it; a single Mum returning to full-time work once her children had grown up wouldn't be able to afford it. Neither would a Widower in a similar situation.
There are occasionally, people who realise train driving isn't the job for them. They can just leave at the moment. They won't be able to if they owe loads of money - they'll be trapped.
I don't think the Apprenticeship program is a pay to train, but it's lurking in the sights of someone greedy who wants to make ££££'s from hopefuls.
The first quote in this article from the project lead is “The idea of the academy is to increase the amount of trainee drivers in the industry”.
But, why? It's not like it's a hard job to recruit for. And the limiting factor in numbers will always be availability of DIs for train handling. Not something you can get round, even with a centralised rules academy
Quite. There is unlikely to be any new money from TOC's to fund the extra trainee places, which points to either cost cutting per head or more trainee's being funded from outside of the current model?
More and more experienced/burnt DIs are throwing in the towel on DI’ing as there’s little to no support from management if/when things go wrong through no fault of their own, combine with increased evidential paperwork required from DIs for little non pensionable premium why would you want to ?
I second this ten times..
Before I third this in my head, can I ask what a DI is, is that just a driving instructor?
I've become curious about what a train driver, or more specifically a shunter driver (which I'm hoping to become) can progress into
Yes, DI - Driver Instructor. Also called 'Mentor Drivers' They are experienced Drivers who will take you through the manual handling stage.
Thanks. There's so much talk on here about how a person fulfills their desire to become a train driver I am curious as to what actual train drivers desire to become! But that is a whole new thread for the future
Generally people are happy to stay as Drivers. It's well paid and has good hours. At some TOCs you also get 'paid' more than Management. There are a few roles that branch off from Driver but many people will just tick along. The grade has changed over the years and people come in from all walks of life. What attracts a large percentage of them is that there are no more pressures and no more ladders to climb. Great pay, little responsibility, nothing to take hime at the end of the day. That is very attractive to some.
Funnily enough, and I know it's not the same in the slightest, I was thinking of all different ways to 'progress' out of bus driving before I (recently) started it. Now I'm happy to work my rest days, best job I've done so far.
In regards to the thread, I think the idea of a train driver academy would only work if the TOCs chipped in and paid for the course places (or most of them) themselves, then we could protect the diversity
If it works like the eLearning then its TOC supported. You are recruited as normal and go through each of the interview stages. What happens next is that instead of a standard/traditional rules course you go direct to manual handling/traction. You are then fully responsible to go through the online course on your own. There are group exercises and mentoring along the way but essentially you sit the course online.
The extension of this really is that you take the course online before recruitment. A bit like an Open University course. You get yourself qualified and then go anywhere you want.
There are already many who want to take the OPC courses before applying as they believe it gives them an advantage and believe it benefits the TOC. Again, this is a natural extension of that.
Reading the Railstaff link (thanks for that btw) This could allow more diversity. There is no bias, not prejudice, no discrimination. You sit the course totally anonymously. I'm not sure how that would work in reality.
This new 'academy' really could go either way. I'll ask around next week.
I'd say its exactly like that
I never came in for the money; it paid a lot less back when I started. I used to be a Manager working 70hr weeks. The constant pressure you are under and the non stop working isn't a healthy work life balance. When I started I had zero aspirations and just wanted to be an employee and nothing more. Come in, work hard, go home. There is a lot to be said for people who enjoy their job and are happy just to be in their role and nothing more.
I don’t think there is a lot more the industry can do to attract “under represented groups” before standards are dropped, and you scrape the start seeing the bottom of the barrel - it’s happened in the police already.
The bottom of the barrel isn’t in relation to under represented groups being of poor quality, to the contrary their equal and often above the “traditional” interest groups, i mean that the lower the initial standard the harder trainers have to work to drag them up to the minimum required standard.
As I’m sure everyone who works and travels on the railway agrees we don’t want minimum standard, and at a push - we want meets the standard full stop.
Any movement to e-learning increases the risk of people who are not undertaking the course themselves or who are unsuitable for the role.
Anyone within reason can be coached to pass assessments and interviews, there’s more than enough consultants who’ll take your money to train you. But being fit and competent to take charge of 1000 souls is a very different thing.
I always thought the conventional wisdom was that you're never supposed to read ahead before or whilst on a Rules/Traction course, everything a trainee needs to know will be taught to them in a sequential order. The idea of this self-taught course goes totally against that. An experienced trainer/assessor can impart not only the course knowledge but also their own experience gained from years of driving.
It's also important to remember that one of the main reasons the driving wage and conditions are good is that the existing training system means that there is not a surplus of inexperienced newly-qualified drivers and never will be. Allowing a large group of self-taught and self-funded candidates into the jobs market will have a profoundly negative effect on terms and conditions within the driving grade. It will also kill-off a lot of the interest from career changers with beneficial life experience such as the military or emergency services.
The standard required to gain entry into the trade must be kept high to protect the travelling public.
Trainers with years of driving experience are quickly fading away. Seems you can pass out and go as a trainer with a number of TOCs whilst still PQA these days