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How to become a Station Assistant

station assistant careers

What does a Station Assistant do?

A station assistant oversees the smooth and safe operation of the railway station.

Duties involve signalling the guard or driver for departure, and ensuring that passengers board and disembark safely.

Station assistants alter indicator boards to reflect new information and make passenger announcements. Checking tickets and giving information on services, routes, train times and delays are important parts of the work.

Smaller stations may require the station assistant to undertake some cleaning duties. Larger stations might split the role into more specialised positions such as platform assistants and gateline assistants.

Some of the work may be based in the ticket office and in the information office, passenger queries are dealt with in person and by phone.

What's the working environment like working as a Station Assistant?

A basic working week is usually 37 to 39 hours. This is in shifts covering days and evenings, weekends and bank holidays. Shifts may be up to 12 hours so you can expect to work unsocial hours. It may be necessary to work overtime.

Work is on the platforms in all weathers, or in a ticket or information office. The work may involve some lifting and carrying.

A uniform is provided by the company.

What does it take to become a Station Assistant?

To be a station assistant you should:

  • have strong communication skills
  • be able to handle the stress of busy periods
  • have a good memory for timetables, fares and regulations
  • be numerate
  • have a smart appearance
  • be able to work independently or in a team
  • be able to stay calm and make decisions in an emergency.

Station Assistant Career Opportunities

There is an increase in the number of rail companies currently recruiting staff.

Applications can be made to one of the Train Operating Companies (TOCs), listed on the Careers in Rail website (see Further Information). Companies that run light rail and metro systems are another possibility, especially the larger ones such as London Underground.

With extra training, promotion can be up to senior station assistant, station team supervisor or leader, assistant station manager, and even station manager.

In some companies, you may also get a chance to move across to guard/conductor, ticket inspector or driver, or into a job in the offices.

Further information

If you would like to know anything about Station Assistant that does not appear on Hotcourses, further information can be found below.

Concorde House
Trinity Park
B37 7UQ
Tel: 0121 635 5520

GoSkills - Rail
88 Kingsway
Tel: 0845 345 2700

Careers in Rail

Northern Ireland Railways
Human Resources Department
Central Station
East Bridge Street
Tel: 028 9089 9400

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Courses to help you become a Station Assistant