Go-Ahead looking to help staff get ahead

Nigel Wood, managing director of Go-Ahead Singapore, Singapore's fourth public bus operator.
Nigel Wood, managing director of Go-Ahead Singapore, Singapore's fourth public bus operator. ST PHOTO: AZMI ATHNI

Employees of bus operator Go-Ahead Singapore will be given opportunities for promotions and to try new positions within the firm, said its managing director Nigel Wood.

He said he is looking to implement a "pre-promotion course" in the future, which will allow employees to learn about the different aspects of Go-Ahead's business, and to apply for positions they may be suitable for.

Such a programme has been carried out annually since 2007 in London, where Go-Ahead has over 7,600 employees.

In London, Go-Ahead runs about 2,300 buses over 100 routes, accounting for about a quarter of the market share.

There, the once-a-week course, which lasts six weeks, also helps participants brush up their resume writing and interview skills.

Mr Wood said: "The course also allows us to identify individuals (who) have got the skill set, and enables us to pluck them out and promote them within (the company)."

He said he has a talent pool of 700 - referring to the number of bus captains Go-Ahead has here.

He said he will not be surprised if some of these bus drivers become depot supervisors, bus service controllers or even take up administrative roles one day.

He added: "There are a number of supervisors and managers in London who have been promoted through the course, and we give them the skills to move up."

Mr Wood, who started as a bus driver in London 21 years ago, said he is an example of how employees in Go-Ahead can work themselves up through the ranks.

"I know it's a tall order... It's not going to happen for everyone. There isn't going to be 700 MD positions, but nobody can say it can't happen."

Adrian Lim

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 04, 2016, with the headline 'Go-Ahead looking to help staff get ahead'. Print Edition | Subscribe