Govia Thameslink Railway are the UK’s largest railway franchise, operating Southern, Thameslink, Great Northern and Gatwick Express. With over 7400 staff, GTR manage 239 stations and deliver 24% of all passenger rail journeys in the UK. A modern franchise with an established history, people are GTR’s biggest asset, starting with the Apprentice and School Leaver programs, made up of a variety of roles where people can make a difference to people and communities on their network, from engineering roles and train drivers to station managers.
GTR view their people as their biggest asset and know that, in order to continue to expand, they need to ensure diversity within their workforce. They found that, when recruiting for early years roles, they were not seeing as many applications from students that come from BAME backgrounds or that are female.
As GTR continue to modernise their train services, infrastructure and working practices, it’s critical for them to continue to seek out the leaders of tomorrow. The Engineering Apprenticeship program at GTR plays a vital role in achieving this, with key objectives to be met:
Increasing the number of applications from the previous year
Increasing the number of applications from BAME backgrounds
Reducing the number of candidate dropouts throughout the program
GTR are committed to providing the Engineering apprentice program each year, ensuring vacant positions are being filled throughout the lifecycles. This aligns with one of GTR’s core business objectives, to continue to deliver high-quality apprenticeships that give colleagues the time to develop the knowledge, skills and behaviours that will enhance their careers and an opportunity to gain nationally recognised qualifications for all of them. Apprentices provide a fresh perspective that every organisation needs to thrive, which is why many of the GTR managers have started their careers with GTR via apprenticeship roles. NGTU was recommended to help support the 2021 intake’s attraction campaign to engage with the female population and encourage them to think about a career in Engineering and the railway. NGTU provided us with an opportunity to engage with schools & teachers on our network, use various social media channels to recruit and with a database of 50% female, we were able to promote GTR as a brand and an employer of choice.