Bus operator recruitment

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Introduction

Hiring bus operators is an essential function of managing a transit operation. While hiring may seem straightforward, attention to certain details can lead to recruitment of better candidates. Agency officials responsible for hiring may struggle with attracting qualified applicants, retaining trainees, or conversely, managing an abundance of applicants when no positions are available. Agencies can vary greatly in their hiring needs. For example, some agencies may seek only experienced commercial (CDL) operators while others have the resources available to hold regular license training programs. The strategies below may need to be adapted individually to suit the characteristics of a specific employer.

Attracting Applicants

Obviously competitive pay and benefits are important for attracting applicants. Getting the message out about what is being offered is equally important. Newspaper advertising still exists and agencies may also consider local weeklies The internet is a significant method for job hunting. Websites include local craigslist, local news sources, partner websites, relevant blogs, and of course the agency website. Paid advertising also exists and can help job seekers find your opportunity quickly. Local access TV may be a low cost or free alternative. Consider the size and placement of the ad in any media. Although agencies may be tempted to constrain the job advertising budget, depending on how desperately applicants are needed small and hard to find ads may produce slim results. The advantage of savings over more expensive ads could be lost by a lengthy advertising process, especially if the agency is understaffed and paying overtime. Advertising on the exterior of vehicles, including using a magnet on the side of agency supervisor or utility vehicles. Encourage bus operators to participate in the recruitment process. Consider employee referral bonuses.

Retaining Applicants Through Hiring

Initial contact with an agency is crucial in forming opinions for anyone, including applicants. Agency staff, including bus operators and desk staff both in person, over the phone, or communicating online should convey the attitude the agency believes will attract the best candidates. If agency staff dislike assisting new applicants or seem unfriendly during the process, some applicants may not continue through the process. Transit agencies sometimes have lengthy hiring processes. A long and complex process can scare away prospective applicants by giving a poor impression of the agency.