Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) has entered a partnership with the consulting, coaching, and networking organisation ‘Women Returners' to help women who have taken a career break to get back into employment.
Women Returners helps professionals who have taken a long career break to get back into work. The talent pool comprises mainly experienced and high-calibre women who have taken a career break for childcare, eldercare, or other reasons.
Govia Thameslink Railway and Women Returners have developed a bespoke programme that aims to recruit trainee train drivers for January 2023. Successful candidates will undergo a formal training programme that includes a Level 3 apprenticeship.
From the very start of their training period, candidates are employed full-time by Govia Thameslink Railway, with a starting salary of £32,080 that rises to £63,196 once trainees are fully qualified. Women Returners will provide tailored career support during the recruitment and onboarding process, and for a further three months during training.
The improvement of diversity is a priority for the company, which is exemplified by its targeted recruitment and marketing as last year 3,500 females applied for trainee train driver roles, an increase of 800 from 2020. The company has set a target that 50% of all new recruits should be female and is further exploring partnerships to help it reach relevant audiences.
Anyone who wishes to find out more or apply for a role by working with Women Returners should visit https://womenreturners.com/opportunities/govia-thameslink-railway-returner-supported-hiring-programme.
Zoey Hudson, Head of Talent, Diversity and Inclusion at Govia Thameslink Railway, said: “We're passionate about having a diverse workforce and constantly challenge ourselves to look at new ways to attract talent. There could be a whole host of reasons why someone has chosen to take a career break and instead of focusing on a gap in a CV, we should be looking at the skills and life experience that person can bring to the business.
“We're really excited to be working with Women Returners for the first time and can't wait to support talented professionals back into work with a highly sought-after train driver role!”
Women Returners Deputy CEO, Hazel Little, commented: “Since 2014 Women Returners has partnered with over 150 leading organisations to create supported routes back to employment for career returners.
“This is our first trainee train driver returner programme – it's fantastic to be working with GTR to get more diversity into the rail industry and to create this unique opportunity for the returner community.”