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General Management Graduate Programme – UK Rail

FirstGroup is one of the UK’s most experienced rail operators running every type of service from long distance, regional, commuter and sleeper services between Cornwall to Scotland. We currently operate two franchises – Great Western Railway and TransPennine Express and one open access passenger rail service – Hull Trains. We transport over 140 million passengers a year and operate over 1,200 vehicles. Across all operations, we are working in partnership with industry partners and local stakeholders to provide better rail services, keeping people moving and communities prospering across the country.

What does the programme involve?

Starting out as a General Management graduate you’ll be developing the skills to become a future business leader from day one. So we’ll be looking for some solid strategic awareness right from the start. It’s about your ability to look at the wider issues, the bigger picture. Your understanding of the knock on effect every decision you make will have. It’s about spotting commercial opportunities, and reacting quickly and effectively to any challenges. You’ll be as comfortable analysing data as you will be presenting proposals on new opportunities to improve the way we work.

During the programme you’ll get fully involved and will experience the following:

  • Gain hands-on experience as part of our train, station and customer service teams
  • Go on a placement with Network Rail
  • Experience project and contract management
  • Spend time with the Performance and Safety teams
  • Join our Commercial, Operations and Finance teams

Throughout the programme, we’ll provide you with training courses to help you to develop your skills and knowledge. These will be a mixture of internal and external courses led by leading subject matter experts to aid with your development.

We will support you every step of the way by providing you with a syllabus and assigning you a mentor who will work with you to ensure you realise your full potential. It’s very much on-the-job learning for people eager to learn from others, yet passionate to drive their own development too.

Who are we looking for?

  • High-reaching graduates with their sights set on a management role
  • Some solid strategic awareness and the ability to see the bigger picture
  • The ability to build positive relationships and collaborate with colleagues at every level
  • Graduates with a real customer focus, being able to put the customer at the heart of everything you do to ensure the best customer experience
  • A focus on safety and the importance of ensuring safety for yourself, the customer and your colleagues

Where will I be located?

Ours is an industry that’s always on the move. So you’ll need the flexibility to adapt to an ever changing environment, as you’ll go on placements throughout the UK. You’ll move around our various train operators to ensure you obtain as much exposure as possible to our industry.

What qualifications do I need?

We aren’t strict with our entry criteria, there’s only a few things we feel are essential:

  • You’ll need to have achieved or be expected to achieve at least a 2:2 in any degree subject
  • You’ll need at least 1 years work experience, including any part-time jobs you’ve had whilst studying, or have completed a summer internship during your studies
  • You don’t need any previous experience in the transport industry, just the passion, enthusiasm and curiosity to understand how the business operates and the ability to align yourself with the business goals and values.

What will I receive in return?

We offer a competitive salary as well free bus travel, reduced rate rail travel, pension scheme, buy as you earn and save as you earn schemes as well as discount and cash back with high street and online retailers.

We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, colour, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.

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