PRESS RELEASE: NSAR’s mentoring programme leads the way towards best-in-class safety-critical rail training

NSAR has developed a new mentoring programme dedicated to improving the quality of training and assessment for safety-critical rail roles. NSAR developed the 3-week long programme in collaboration with training provider Bridgeway. The programme has proved so successful with Bridgeway’s trainers that the company want to roll out the programme to all its newly assured personnel.

The new mentoring programme will have a dramatic impact on the quality of training and assessment and is set to pave the way for a new industry-wide accreditation process for safety-critical rail training.

The programme has three distinct week-long sections. Firstly, classroom-based learning on safety-critical compliance, procedures and standards involving the Rail Training Accreditation Scheme (RTAS) rules. Secondly, live ‘trackside walkouts’ at two different sites, allowing trainers to embed the technical criteria involved in the RTAS approved material. Thirdly, back to the classroom to test, develop and refine the trainer’s delivery skills using pragmatic scenario-based case studies. The programme concludes with an adjudication panel consisting of leading industry coaching and compliance experts from NSAR and Network Rail.

Given that 40% of all active rail trainers will reach retirement age by 2030[1], the industry needs modern and responsive initiatives to attract, encourage and retain new trainers. NSAR’s programme will drive improvements in the quality of mentoring standards, therefore improving the quality of training delivered across the industry. It will also support career paths into this important and essential professional sector.

Angi Bell, QA Projects and Reporting Manager, NSAR said, For many years training providers across the rail industry have been asking us for a more holistic system of mentoring their peers to help guide and further develop their accredited trainers. In response, our Quality Assurance team have created a tailor-made programme for training providers, to instil the highest standards and processes from the start of the training cycle rather than tacked on at the end. Through collaboration with Bridgeway, we have created and refined a programme that will be truly transformative.

Steve Diksa, HSQE Director Bridgeway said, “As a leading rail training and assessment provider in the UK, we are always striving to better our service offering and improve our trainer’s skillset. Five of our entry-level rail trainers took part in the 3-week long programme and we are delighted with the result. All of our trainers made marked improvements in their knowledge as well as their level of engagement and confidence.”

NSAR’s mentoring programme is open to all training providers across the rail sector.

For more information about NSAR’s Mentoring Programme and how it can help your organisation please contact us.

[1] NSAR Annual Rail Workforce Survey 2023.

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