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Train Conductor CV Writing Tip's

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Train Conductor CV Writing Service

Train conductors, also known as guards or train crew, make sure that rail passengers have paid their fare, and are safe and comfortable during their journey.

As a conductor, your day-to-day duties would include:

  • checking the carriages are clean before the start of a journey
  • making sure equipment, doors and controls are working properly
  • walking through carriages during the journey, checking tickets and travel documents
  • answering passengers’ questions about routes, arrival times and connections
  • making announcements over the public address system
  • making sure passengers get on and off the train safely
  • dealing with unexpected delays or emergencies, for example a passenger falling ill.

You would also write reports, detailing any delays or incidents that occur during each journey.

Hours

You would usually work 35 to 37 hours a week, possibly on a shift system including early mornings, late nights and weekends.

You would work from a cab on the train, normally with a computer terminal and communications equipment that allows you to speak to the driver and make announcements.

Your employer would supply you with a uniform.

Income

  • Train conductors start on about £12,000 a year while training
  • After training, they can earn between £18,000 and £21,000
  • With experience, conductors can earn up to £25,000.

Overtime payments, allowances and benefits can increase annual income.

 

Entry requirements

Employers will usually expect you to have good basic maths and English skills, and customer service experience would be useful.

Apart from an interview, you would usually need to pass memory, comprehension and concentration tests. You would also have a medical to check your fitness levels, eyesight, colour vision and hearing.

Train operating companies have strict policies on drug and alcohol use, and are known to carry out random checks on staff.

You may be able to get into this career through a rail transport Apprenticeship scheme. The range of Apprenticeships available in your area will depend on the local jobs market and the types of skills employers need from their workers. To find out more about Apprenticeships, visit the Apprenticeships website.


Training and development

You could receive up to six months’ on-the-job training, covering rules and regulations, safety, ticketing, timetables and customer service.

You may be able to work towards NVQ Level 2 in Rail Transport Operations (Passenger Services). NVQs in customer service may also be available.


Skills and knowledge

  • excellent customer service skills
  • a pleasant manner and smart appearance
  • a good understanding of rail regulations, safety procedures, fares and timetables
  • a clear speaking voice for making passenger announcements
  • the ability to accept responsibility and work without supervision
  • the ability to deal professionally with upset or angry passengers
  • good maths skills for handling cash and payments
  • a willingness to work flexibly.

Opportunities

You could find work with passenger train operating companies (TOCs), and light rail and metro companies.

TOCs often promote existing station staff to conductor jobs, so you may be able to transfer from a platform assistant or onboard catering host role.

With experience, you may be able to progress to senior conductor or train manager, or you could transfer to driver training programmes when vacancies arise.

You may find the following links useful for job vacancies and general reading (links open in new window):

Related industry information

Industry summary

The rail industry is represented by People 1st, the Sector Skills Council for hospitality, passenger transport, travel and tourism. The passenger transport sector incorporates rail, aviation, bus and coach, taxi and private hire, light rail and metro, driver training, and UK waterways. The sector accounts for 735,000 jobs, most of which are within the bus and coach, taxi and private hire, rail, and aviation industries. The passenger transport sector includes a wide variety of roles, from pilots and transport planners, to essential support roles in finance, marketing and human resources.

The rail industry is one of the largest industries in the passenger transport sector incorporating rail operating services and rail engineering. Within train operating companies, the main jobs are customer focused, but there are many jobs in operations and service delivery. Engineering is a large part of the industry with engineers and technicians responsible for the rolling stock, the track (permanent way) and its surrounds, telecommunications and the electrification of the railway.

Key facts:

  • There are around 159,000 people working in the rail industry, of which:
    • 47,000 work for train operating companies
    • 112,000 work for Network Rail and in supplier and engineering companies
  • There are around 2,500 stations in the UK, of which 18 are managed by Network Rail.
  • The average age of employees is 39 years.
  • The average working hours for a rail industry employee are 37 per week.
  • Shift working is the norm within the industry.
  • Just 2% of the workforce is employed part‐time.
  • Trainee driver vacancies are competitive as there can be more than 300 applications for each job available.

Jobs in the industry fall into the following areas:

  • Rail operations (customer facing and service delivery) – such as train driver, station staff member, train crew member, control room operator, service planner, signaller, train manager, rail station assistant, conductor, gateline assistant
  • Engineering – such as engineer, technician, assistant engineer, technician manager, track maintenance worker, signalling technician, traction and rolling stock technician, rail engineering apprentice

National and regional data

[N.B. Regional data presented are for the rail industry and the passenger transport sector as a whole. Data derived from the Labour Force Survey, 2007.]

East Midlands – There are 3,100 people working in the rail industry in the region. In the passenger transport sector as whole, 14% of the workforce in the region is female. 14% of the workforce is from an ethnic minority background. 6% of the workforce is under 25 years, 62% is 26‐49 years and 32% is 50 years or older. Skill gaps include: foreign languages; vehicle maintenance and engineering; Welsh language; job related IT; and safety/accident management.

East of England – There are 4,400 people working in the rail industry in the region. In the passenger transport sector as whole, 25% of the workforce in the region is female. 9% of the workforce is from an ethnic minority background. 7% of the workforce is under 25 years, 52% is 26‐49 years and 41% is 50 years or older. Skill gaps include: foreign languages; job related IT; Welsh language; and vehicle maintenance and engineering.

London – There are 3,300 people working in the rail industry in the region. In the passenger transport sector as whole, 20% of the workforce in the region is female. 42% of the workforce is from an ethnic minority background. 4% of the workforce is under 25 years, 70% is 26‐49 years and 26% is 50 years or older. Skill gaps include: job related IT; foreign languages; safety/accident management; booking operations; and logistics and scheduling of services.

North East – There are 1,200 people working in the rail industry in the region. In the passenger transport sector as whole, 17% of the workforce in the region is female. 3% of the workforce is from an ethnic minority background. 8% of the workforce is under 25 years, 51% is 26‐49 years and 41% is 50 years or older. Skill gaps include: job related IT; foreign languages; vehicle maintenance and engineering; Welsh language; and safety/accident management.

North West – There are 6,500 people working in the rail industry in the region. In the passenger transport sector as whole, 16% of the workforce in the region is female. 14% of the workforce is from an ethnic minority background. 6% of the workforce is under 25 years, 61% is 26‐49 years and 33% is 50 years or older. Skill gaps include: foreign languages; disability awareness; Welsh language; and vehicle maintenance and engineering.

South East – There are 9,000 people working in the rail industry in the region. In the passenger transport sector as whole, 25% of the workforce in the region is female. 11% of the workforce is from an ethnic minority background. 6% of the workforce is under 25 years, 48% is 26‐49 years and 36% is 50 years or older. Skill gaps include: foreign languages; vehicle maintenance and engineering; and job related IT.

South West – There are 4,500 people working in the rail industry in the region. In the passenger transport sector as whole, 19% of the workforce in the region is female. 4% of the workforce is from an ethnic minority background. 4% of the workforce is under 25 years, 56% is 26‐49 years and 40% is 50 years or older. Skill gaps include: foreign languages; job related IT; and vehicle maintenance and engineering.

West Midlands – There are 4,300 people working in the rail industry in the region. In the passenger transport sector as whole, 19% of the workforce in the region is female. 27% of the workforce is from an ethnic minority background. 7% of the workforce is under 25 years, 65% is 26‐49 years and 28% is 50 years or older. Skill gaps include: job related IT; safety/accident management; foreign languages; maths/working with numbers; and disability awareness.

Yorkshire and the Humber – There are 5,800 people working in the rail industry in the region. In the passenger transport sector as whole, 13% of the workforce in the region is female. 18% of the workforce is from an ethnic minority background. 8% of the workforce is under 25 years, 62% is 26‐49 years and 30% is 50 years or older. Skill gaps include: foreign languages; vehicle maintenance and engineering; job related IT; and Welsh language.

Northern Ireland – There are 500 people working in the rail industry in the region. In the passenger transport sector as whole, 21% of the workforce in the region is female. Data are unavailable on the ethnicity of the workforce. 9% of the workforce is under 25 years, 74% is 26‐49 years and 17% is 50 years or older. Skill gaps include: foreign languages; safety/accident management; job related IT; and disability awareness.

Scotland – There 3,200 people working in the rail industry in the region. In the passenger transport sector as whole, 16% of the workforce in the region is female. 2% of the workforce is from an ethnic minority background. 8% of the workforce is under 25 years, 56% is 26‐49 years and 36% is 50 years or older. Skill gaps include: foreign languages; vehicle maintenance and engineering; and disability awareness.

Wales – There are 2,100 people working in the rail industry in the region. In the passenger transport sector as whole, 18% of the workforce in the region is female. 4% of the workforce is from an ethnic minority background. 8% of the workforce is under 25 years, 54% is 26‐49 years and 38% is 50 years or older. Skill gaps include: Welsh language; foreign languages; disability awareness; safety/accident management; job related IT; and vehicle maintenance and engineering.

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