information for applicants

Visions and Values

Reasons why First TransPennine Express will be the employer of choice in the North of England:

  • Forward thinking
  • Competitive salaryFriendly staff and managers
  • Good team atmosphere
  • A new company with high aspirations and expectations
  • Largest Intercity train service in the North of England
  • Guaranteed employment for 8 years with a possible extension for a further 5 years
  • Customer Service Training for all front line staff
  • Commitment to training and development for all employees
  • Excellent career prospects
  • Improved customer facilities at all stations
  • New train fleet
  • Improved customer information systems at all stations
  • Improvements to cleanliness of stations and trains
  • Investment to provide staff facilities of a very high standard
  • Newly designed uniform based on staff feedback
  • Harmonisation of terms and conditions to provide an attractive rewards package and benefits
  • Significant investment in a service and staff Recognition package

What We Have To Offer


First TransPennine Express - The Future


First TransPennine Express have committed to invest £260 million over the course of the franchise. This will include:

  • Entire fleet of new trains
  • New train depots
  • £12m investment in stations
  • Recruitment of extra staff
  • Training Academy and NVQs
  • Performance recovery plan
  • Customer service excellence

We will be investing heavily in our people - both through the recruitment of extra staff, new uniforms and a significant training programme.

We aim to be the preferred choice for customers, which means that people are central to our success. We aim to get the best out of our people and will support them in self development as well as providing structured training courses.

The Training Academy is now being rolled out across all First rail companies, and is intended to provide a quality environment for all our employees to gain the maximum benefit from their Training and Development.

The investment in stations will include refurbishment of staff accommodation to provide professional environments in which to work.

Training & Development

We aim to be the first choice for customers, which means that people are central to our success. We have committed to investing heavily in training and full details will be obtainable from your line manager or the training department.

Training Academy

First TransPennine Express aims to put people first by providing comprehensive training and development to bring out the best in its employees and deliver a safe and customer focused service to all its customers.

The First TransPennine Express Training Academy has been established to offer structured and focused training and development for all of the Company's employees. Before embarking on any activity we must first of all ensure that the Training & Development Plan is focused on the achievement of our business objectives and the development needs of the employees. This is done by undertaking a training needs analysis which involves consulting with a sample of employees and managers at every level to identify how best to access their full potential. This will enable The Academy to focus its resources in those areas most beneficial to the Company and to individual employees.

An agreed Training & Development Plan will be distributed throughout the Company and will be accessible to all employees through Newsletters, meetings with Line Managers and the intranet. The six monthly performance review process will identify which programmes are most suited to individual development needs.

The Academy intends to provide high quality training venues which are conducive to effective learning and development and being easily accessible from the employees normal place of work.


Where training is undertaken away from the normal workplace each employee will receive a Certificate of Attendance from The Training Academy. This certificate will confirm that the employee has attended a particular programme, for example Customer Service Training.

Back in the workplace the employee must then be able to apply their newly acquired skills and knowledge in their normal everyday work. Once the employee is able to undertake the activity confidently and to a consistently high standard they are then recognised to have achieved a level of competence.

With the introduction of National Vocational Qualifications First TransPennine Express provides the opportunity to recognise their achievements through a framework of railway specific qualifications. This is all part of our commitment to making First TransPennine Express the best place to work, delivering the service our customers expect and deserve.

Protecting You


Unfortunately the reality of the industry in which we operate means that our staff can sometimes be exposed to risk. We do our best to minimise and control this risk, but it is not always possible to stop it completely. For example, there are individuals who choose to use the railway as a means of ending their lives and the Company is in a constant battle against vandalism. Events like this, when they do occur, cause staff to react in different ways. To help staff through such incidents we have a Chain of Care Policy in place. This will be discussed with you during your first week with us and more information is in your Handbook.

Equal Opportunities

We believe that everyone is equally important because each and every member of the team plays a part in delivering a superior service and great value to each one of our customers.

Our Equal Opportunity Policy ensures that we promote a working environment which ensures that everyone respects individuals, irrespective of gender, status, race or religion. This applies to everything we do, from recruitment to training and assessing to progression.


Harassment or bullying in any form will not be tolerated at First TransPennine Express. We respect all our employees. That means we will treat our colleagues as we wish to be treated ourselves. Any member of staff who is found guilty of harassing a colleague will be dealt with very severely.

Completing The Application Form

In First TransPennine Express the application form plays a crucial part in the selection process, both in deciding whether you will be short-listed or not, and at the interview itself. It is vital that you complete this form as fully and accurately as possible. The following advice is designed to help you, particularly if you do not have experience of filling in application forms. All information you give is confidential. Read the application and any other details you are given carefully.

Personal Details

Make sure you complete all of this section, as all fields in the on-line form are mandatory.

Medical History

Due to the safety nature of the Railway Industry this section must be completed fully. We will only take this information into account for shortlisting purposes for those roles which are deemed "Safety Critical," where there are specific National Group Standards in place that we must adhere to.

Education and Training

Make sure you give all the information needed, including dates. State the level of your examination e.g. GCSE, GSE 'O' level or 'A' level etc. and the grades you obtained. Also include any training you have received which you consider relevant to the position you have applied for. If you have membership of any appropriate professional bodies you should mention this here.

Other Experience

This is the most important section. It is a good idea to write down all your ideas in draft form on a sheet of paper before completing this section of the application form. Relate your skills, knowledge and experience to the duties of the post as fully as possible. Take into account any paid or unpaid work you have done or are doing, including skills acquired in running a home and/or organising a family if this has been a major part of your experience.

Data Protection Act

First TransPennine Express is committed to complying with the principles of the Data Protection Act 1998. The information contained in this form may be held on our computer database for future reference and monitoring purposes by First TransPennine Express and other companies within FirstGroup plc.

Equal Opportunities

First TransPennine Express is working towards being an Equal Opportunities Employer. Applications are welcome from all people with relevant skills and abilities for the job.

The Interview Process


The interview is the most widely used tool for selection. Normally all candidates successful at the application stage will be invited to attend an interview. First TransPennine Express endeavours to ensure that every candidate is offered the same  opportunities to give the best presentation of themselves, to demonstrate their suitability for the role and to ask questions of the panel.

The interview panel will consist of two members, one of whom will usually be the recruiting manager/future line manager for the role. Interviews are structured and can last between 45 minutes to 11/2 hours in length. In the majority of cases the style of the interview used is behavioral or competency based. This means the types of questions being asked are based around the essential and desirable competencies of the role, as detailed in the Job Description, and focuses on the individual candidate's previous skills and experience related to these.

Assessment Centre

An assessment centre will be run, if appropriate, to broaden the opportunity for candidates to demonstrate the behaviours and to provide an objective scoring mechanism.

The assessment centre will potentially include one or more of the elements below:

  • Verbal Reasoning and Numerical Competency Tests
  • Psychometric
  • Group Exercise, Quiz or Presentation
  • Interview

The most appropriate assessment tools will be considered for the grade of staff being recruited.

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