Railtrain - real or not

 
  cleanride66 Beginner

Hi everyone, I've been reading through a lot of threads and googling Railtrain.
As with a previous person on here - Sunbury23 - I find myself in a similar situation.
I saw an opportunity advertised for trainee driver/ second person with Railtrain and applied. Offered is:
  • 12 months paid training - 5 weeks in Geelong Vic and the rest in Melbourne
  • casual basis and I think, move on to Pacific National.
  • guaranteed 60hrs fortnight
  • some candidates are lucky enough to sign on with PN before the 12 month training ends
  • opportunity to become a train driver
In 2 weeks ( from applying ) I did the registration process and honesty/consent form ( I was surprised at this early stage I was asked for my uniform size ) completed and passed online colour blind and psychometric test and passed an online Teams interview.  I'm doing my medical in the next 3 days and my police check is pending.  This is the quickest recruitment process I have ever experienced.
I'm quite sure my medical and police check will pass as I did these only 11 months ago for my current job and passed.

Before leaving my current full-time permanent job with Metro Trains Melbourne, I would like to be sure that Railtrain is legit with what they are offering. Has anyone out there got any reviews on Railtrain? Has anyone been "taken for a ride" with false promises?
Why would I leave my permanent job with Metro?  The chance to become a Train Driver through Railtrain sounds appealing.  It would be devastating to leave my job for a job that may not be for real.
Thanks for any comments / feedback.

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  Fatty Deputy Commissioner

Location: Melbourne
Hi everyone, I've been reading through a lot of threads and googling Railtrain.
As with a previous person on here - Sunbury23 - I find myself in a similar situation.
I saw an opportunity advertised for trainee driver/ second person with Railtrain and applied. Offered is:
  • 12 months paid training - 5 weeks in Geelong Vic and the rest in Melbourne
  • casual basis and I think, move on to Pacific National.
  • guaranteed 60hrs fortnight
  • some candidates are lucky enough to sign on with PN before the 12 month training ends
  • opportunity to become a train driver
In 2 weeks ( from applying ) I did the registration process and honesty/consent form ( I was surprised at this early stage I was asked for my uniform size ) completed and passed online colour blind and psychometric test and passed an online Teams interview.  I'm doing my medical in the next 3 days and my police check is pending.  This is the quickest recruitment process I have ever experienced.
I'm quite sure my medical and police check will pass as I did these only 11 months ago for my current job and passed.

Before leaving my current full-time permanent job with Metro Trains Melbourne, I would like to be sure that Railtrain is legit with what they are offering. Has anyone out there got any reviews on Railtrain? Has anyone been "taken for a ride" with false promises?
Why would I leave my permanent job with Metro?  The chance to become a Train Driver through Railtrain sounds appealing.  It would be devastating to leave my job for a job that may not be for real.
Thanks for any comments / feedback.
cleanride66
Yes, they are legit but I wouldn't leave Metro to work for them. I'd wait until PN or one of the other operators start recruiting directly.
  cleanride66 Beginner

Thank you Fatty, great help.  So PN actually do the paid training directly?  Makes sense to go through the company opposed to going through a recruitment agency.
Do you know roughly when and where they advertise?
Thanks again.
  Fatty Deputy Commissioner

Location: Melbourne
Thank you Fatty, great help.  So PN actually do the paid training directly?  Makes sense to go through the company opposed to going through a recruitment agency.
Do you know roughly when and where they advertise?
Thanks again.
cleanride66
Railtrain are worse than a recruitment agency - they're labour hire that (IMO) chews up and exploits trainees. PN occasionally advertise and it's always through Seek or keep an eye on their recruitment portal.

There's currently a trainee role going in Dimboola. It's only a two year contract but plenty of time to get signed off as a loco driver.

If you're mobile they've got trainee positions all over the country at times. Do you know anyone that works there? It's often the best way to get a foot in the door in this industry.
  cleanride66 Beginner

Again, thank you so much. I won't risk leaving my job for Railtrain, but I will take your advice and keep looking on Seek and company recruitment portals.  
I don't know anyone in the Industry but I'm hopeful my current rail experience may assist somewhat.
Thanks again and stay safe out there.
  fzr560 Chief Train Controller

Although labour-hire on locos was originally "sold" as giving companies added flexibility what it is really about is destroying the working conditions of those employed under conventional EAs, and covering for the shortcomings of planning and rostering departments. Having observed the introduction of labour-hire into a depot servicing long term contracts, I believe all savings that are alleged to have been made are fictitious and the flexibility that has been gained has come from the poor suckers that need to sit beside the phone, assuming it might ring. And you will sit by the phone, sober, because you want the phone to ring next week. I have seen some people do well, others, not so much.
  Fatty Deputy Commissioner

Location: Melbourne
Again, thank you so much. I won't risk leaving my job for Railtrain, but I will take your advice and keep looking on Seek and company recruitment portals.  
I don't know anyone in the Industry but I'm hopeful my current rail experience may assist somewhat.
Thanks again and stay safe out there.
cleanride66
Have you considered applying for VLine? It'd be a pretty good stepping stone from Metro if you'd like to drive freight one day.
  Fatty Deputy Commissioner

Location: Melbourne
Although labour-hire on locos was originally "sold" as giving companies added flexibility what it is really about is destroying the working conditions of those employed under conventional EAs, and covering for the shortcomings of planning and rostering departments. Having observed the introduction of labour-hire into a depot servicing long term contracts, I believe all savings that are alleged to have been made are fictitious and the flexibility that has been gained has come from the poor suckers that need to sit beside the phone, assuming it might ring. And you will sit by the phone, sober, because you want the phone to ring next week. I have seen some people do well, others, not so much.
fzr560
100%. Labour hire companies should be illegal.
  cleanride66 Beginner

Have you considered applying for VLine? It'd be a pretty good stepping stone from Metro if you'd like to drive freight one day.
  cleanride66 Beginner

Applied with Metro 18 months ago then had to reapply.  It's been 4 months since reapplying second time around.  Vline rarely advertise but found out too late when they did last year.  Most of the time they get ex Metro or freight drivers
  shogun427 Station Master

A good acid test for a job is to see how often it gets posted on Seek.

These opportunities during a good grain harvest tend to be advertised every 6 months which gives an indication of the attrition rate of the people that take up these jobs.

Having worked in a previous life for PN I can say that railtrain casuals *can* go on to be fully qualified train drivers but this is in no way guaranteed.

PN can be pretty cut throat when it wants to be and the moment the grain volumes drop the rail train casuals will be the first to be culled. Just depends on your situation, if you're married with kids who rely on you to earn an income then I probably wouldn't leave Metro.

If you're in a good situation where you can throw caution to the wind then it's a good way to become a qualified second person and gain experience so you stand a chance when they offer driver in training opportunities where it's a requirement to already be a qualified second person.

Once you get that firemans ticket your opportunity to get a trainee train driving gig with one of the big freight companies goes up significantly higher as well.

Just be mindful you're considered as scab labour and there's some pretty big ego's at the depot's you listed and railtrain casuals can be treated like smeg and some people have the mindset of I'm not going to teach you anything figure it out yourself. If you can weather that and keep the long term goal in mind then go for it.
  cleanride66 Beginner

A good acid test for a job is to see how often it gets posted on Seek. These opportunities during a good grain harvest tend to be advertised every 6 months which gives an indication of the attrition rate of the people that take up these jobs. Having worked in a previous life for PN I can say that railtrain casuals *can* go on to be fully qualified train drivers but this is in no way guaranteed. PN can be pretty cut throat when it wants to be and the moment the grain volumes drop the rail train casuals will be the first to be culled. Just depends on your situation, if you're married with kids who rely on you to earn an income then I probably wouldn't leave Metro.
Somebody
Pretty much me - sole income earner.
Thanks for your replies everyone - will stick with Metro;-)
  KRviator Moderator

Location: Up the front
Be extremely careful with any entity with "RailTrain" in the name. IIRC, it was the original RailTrain that went bust owing employees thousands of dollars in Super and entitlements, only to reappear a few months later, similar name, same directors, minus a swag of liabilities.

Googling "RTBU Railtrain underpayment" or similar should yield some....interesting....results.

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