A train company is attempting has launched a recruitment drive to employ more women drivers with a salary of £63,000 on offer.

Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR), which operates the Thameslink, Southern, Great Northern, and Gatwick Express trains, has announced a new recruitment partnership with the consulting and networking group Women Returners.

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The goal is to hire female train drivers by January 2023.

MyLondon reports it has set a goal of having 50 percent of new recruits be women.

According to the 2021 Shapps Plan for Rail, 87 percent of the workforce is male, with 30 percent of the workforce being over the age of 51.

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The latter is a concern because under the terms of their contracts a large proportion of colleagues will reach retirement age in the coming years.

Although anyone can apply to become a train driver at GTR, this collaboration hopes to help the operator tap into a talent pool of women.

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Those who have taken 18-month or longer career breaks now want to return to a fulfilling career.

Apprentice train drivers who are successful will be paid £32,080 right away and with a Level 3 apprenticeship and 75 percent off National Rail travel, this will later rise to £63,196 once fully qualified as a train driver.

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Women Returners will also provide assistance and coaching during the recruitment and onboarding processes, as well as for the first three months of service.

Those interested must act quickly, however, as the application deadline is October 14.

There are openings at four London train stations: Cricklewood, Hornsey, Selhurst, and Victoria, as well as Brighton.

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Zoey Hudson, Head of Talent, Diversity and Inclusion at GTR, 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.”

Women Returners deputy CEO Hazel Little added: “This is our first trainee train driver returner program – 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.”

Source: Express

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