All of the below information comes directly from job reviews written by FirstGroup employees based on 63 reviews.
 
 
Responsibility:
3.6/5
 
Work Life Balance:
3.8/5
 
Environmental Awareness:
3.6/5
 
Compensation & Benefits:
3.7/5
 
Company Culture:
3.5/5
 
Career Progression:
3.8/5
 
Colleagues:
3.9/5
 
Training:
3.8/5
 
Enjoyment:
4/5
 
Overall Rating:
3.7/5
 

The world’s leading ground passenger transport company, we help 2.5 billion people each year to get to where they want to go. Every day we connect people and keep entire communities moving on their way to school, to work, or to be with family and friends.

Across the UK and North America, we employ 117,000 people who help us to generate an annual revenue of £6.7 billion. Our UK bus division operates around a fifth of all local bus services and runs a fleet of approximately 6,400 buses serving 40 of the largest towns and cities in the UK. We’re also the UK’s largest rail operator carrying over 280 million passengers a year and operating almost a quarter of the UK’s passenger rail network.

Our two-year programmes are designed to take you out of your comfort zone and quickly develop your skills and career. Bringing lots of energy and ideas, you’ll roll your sleeves up, take on responsibility and work with a variety of teams on real-life projects.

To look at our user page on YouTube, please click here


Industry: Engineering and Manufacturing Department: Engineering Management Job Title: Rail Engineering Management Graduate

What are the best and worst things about your job?

Wide range of opportunities.

Freedom to manage your placements and time.

Freedom to explore.

Company Credit Card makes life easier.

Free train travel for the train operating company you are based at.

Very supportive people within HR.

A lot of training offered.

Knowledge in the field is not expected, only willingness to learn and apply what has been learned.

Not much stress (depended on placement).

Very flexible company, they listen to you and care about you!

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Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution Department: Operations Job Title: Duty Station Manager

What are the best and worst things about your job?

Variety
Challenges
Wide opportunities available

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Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution Department: Stations Job Title: Station Manager

What are the best and worst things about your job?

Every day is different
Opportunity to learn
People management

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Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution Department: Finance Job Title: Finance Management Graduate

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution Department: Bus Operations Job Title: Graduate Manager

What are the best and worst things about your job?

Every day is different. I have experienced a wide variety of aspects of the company in the last 8 months.

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Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution Department: Rail Operations Job Title: Driver Standards Manager

What are the best and worst things about your job?

ability to have real influence on improving work for our colleagues and service for our customers.

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Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution Department: Insurance Job Title: Litigation Assistant

What are the best and worst things about your job?

You meet an array of different people and, during the graduate scheme, you are introduced to so many different departments that no two days were the same.

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Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution Department: Finance Job Title: Finance Management Graduate

What are the best and worst things about your job?

Being able to study alongside working.

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Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution Department: Operations Job Title: Driver Manager

What are the best and worst things about your job?

Extremely satisfying as what we deliver is real, moving thousands of people a day from one location to another.

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Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution Department: First Bus Job Title: Operations and Management Graduate

What are the best and worst things about your job?

The best part about my job is that I get to work within a diverse work force that places focus upon its customers and delivering an excellent service.

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Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution Department: Major Projects Job Title: Project Engineer

What are the best and worst things about your job?

Responsibility,
Challenge,
Opportunities for development.

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Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution Department: Engineering Job Title: Engineering Management Graduate

What are the best and worst things about your job?

The variety of work an operations environment can throw at you. No two days are ever the same and things can change at very short notice. Also, working within a company open to change and supportive of fresh ideas.

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Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution Department: FirstBus - Graduate Job Title: Graduate Operations Manager

What are the best and worst things about your job?

The ability to make a real difference from the very first day - you're encouraged to come up with new ideas to improve the business, and given the tools and encouragement to follow these through.

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Industry: Engineering and Manufacturing Department: Engineering Job Title: Engineering Contracts Manager

What are the best and worst things about your job?

I am never bored. Everyday is different, challenging and enjoyable.
The pay is good.
Lots of support from senior management.
Great fun colleagues.

Read more


Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution Department: Procurement

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution Department: Operations Job Title: Graduate Operations Manager

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Fleet Department Job Title: Rail Engineering Management

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Job Title: Rail Operations Management Graduate Trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Account Manager Department: UK Bus Job Title: Operations Graduate

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Major Projects and New Fleets Job Title: Rail Operations Management Graduate

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Rail Operations Job Title: (Rail) Operations Graduate Management Trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Marketing Job Title: Marketing Graduate

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Job Title: Rail Operations Graduate

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Rail Job Title: Operations Management Graduate Trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Operations Job Title: Operations and Management Graduate

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: GWR Job Title: Operations Graduate Management Trainee

Industry: Engineering and Manufacturing, Engineering Graduate Trainee Department: Great Western Railway Job Title: Engineering Graduate Management Trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Job Title: Operations Management Graduate Trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Job Title: Graduate Manager

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Transport Management Department: Bus Job Title: Graduate Trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Operations Job Title: Operations Graduate

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Job Title: Operation Management Trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Job Title: Engineering Management Graduate Trainne

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Account Manager Department: Rail Job Title: Operations Graduate

Industry: Engineering and Manufacturing, Engineering Graduate Trainee Department: Engineering Job Title: Graduate Engineering Management Trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Bus Job Title: Management Trainee

Industry: Engineering and Manufacturing, Engineering Graduate Trainee Department: Engineering Job Title: Graduate Engineering management trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Bus Operations Job Title: Operations Management Trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Rail Job Title: Mangement Graduate

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Engineering Job Title: Graduate Engineerng Management Trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: First Great Western Job Title: Operations Graduate Manager

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Rail Operations Job Title: Rail Operations Management Graduate

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Account Manager Job Title: Graduate Operations Manager

Industry: Engineering and Manufacturing, Engineering Graduate Trainee Department: Rail Job Title: Engineering Management Graduate

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: ScotRail Job Title: Management Graduate

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Job Title: Operations Management Trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Rail Engineering Job Title: Rail Engineering Graduate

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Transport Management Department: Engineering Job Title: Graduate Engineering Management Trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Job Title: Bus Operations Graduate

Industry: Engineering and Manufacturing, Engineering Graduate Trainee Department: Sheffield Job Title: Engineering Graduate

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Bus Operations Job Title: Graduate Trainee Manager

Industry: Engineering and Manufacturing, Mechanical Engineering Job Title: Graduate engineer

Industry: Engineering and Manufacturing, Engineering Graduate Trainee Department: Rail Job Title: Rail Engineering Graduate Manager Trainee

Industry: Engineering and Manufacturing, Engineering Graduate Trainee Department: Management Job Title: Graduate Engineering Management Trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Group Job Title: Management Graduate Trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: FCC Job Title: Operations graduate management trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Operations Job Title: Operations management trainee

Industry: Engineering and Manufacturing, Engineering Graduate Trainee Department: First Great Western Engineering Job Title: Rail Engineering Graduate

Industry: Engineering and Manufacturing, Buying & Procurement Department: Bus Operations/Commercial Job Title: Management Graduate Trainee

Industry: Transport, Logistics and Distribution, Management Graduate Scheme Department: Commercial Job Title: Graduate management trainee

Industry: Arts & Media, Marketing Executive Job Title: Commercial Graduate

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FirstGroup

Average start time: 8:00

Average end time: 17:00

Average number of working hours: 9

Based on 63 reviews


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Please use the below to filter the reviews by career sector:

Application Advice:

Be honest and show a genuine passion for the role.

Interview Advice:

General questions about your past. Management questions. Company values.

Rail Engineering Management Graduate, Engineering Management at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Prepare and put the time in to do it.

Interview Advice:

Preparation, as it is a long process.

Duty Station Manager, Operations at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

-Make sure you know what you are applying for and are aware of what will be expected from you if you are successful.
-Give a good account of yourself, the reasons you would be a good candidate, and make sure you come across as engaged.

Interview Advice:

-Research the company, read the values, come prepared with examples of how you demonstrate the company values.
-Come prepared with some questions of your own.
-Be presentable and professional.

Station Manager, Stations at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Interview Advice:

Research the company history but also look at recent news stories related to the transport industry in general.

Finance Management Graduate, Finance at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Do your research about the company.
Understand the industry.

Interview Advice:

Have examples of going on buses and taking note of the drivers, routes and locations.

Graduate Manager, Bus Operations at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

you must be aware of what you are going into - you cannot treat operations like a 9-5 and have to show that you are willing to work unsociable hours to be truly accepted by the colleagues you manage.

Interview Advice:

ensure you use techniques such as STAR but also then introduce an element of reflection/evaluation.

Driver Standards Manager, Rail Operations at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Show yourself to be a well-rounded person able to adapt to different circumstances. You will be working with all sorts of different people across several departments.

Interview Advice:

The interview consists of different modules. Come prepared to work under pressure both on your own and as a team. Get to know the others in your interview slot - some of them may be your colleagues shortly.

Litigation Assistant, Insurance at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Interview Advice:

Just be yourself and answer the questions with confidence.

Finance Management Graduate, Finance at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

STAR approach.

Interview Advice:

Challenging process - looking for great personalities who can develop and lead difficult environments.

Driver Manager, Operations at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Keep the application simple and refer to any previous work/life experience when possible.

Interview Advice:

I would encourage candidates to be enthusiastic, willing and most importantly themselves. Our interview process allows us to view candidates in varying scenarios and we look for a genuine person who has the ambition to learn.

Operations and Management Graduate, First Bus at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Practice psychometric tests, and try to be relaxed in the video interview, think about your setting.

Interview Advice:

Be yourself and demonstrate what makes you stand out as a leader and team player. Research the industry and the company's core values.

Project Engineer, Major Projects at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Be open, honest and focus on the competencies and positive characteristics you have which would be beneficial to the company and would suit the role. Keep the application concise.

Interview Advice:

Prepare for anything. Practise at home and be prepared for unexpected questions or comments. Make sure you know your CV, application and abilities off by heart and be prepared to offer examples of how you have demonstrated certain competencies and qualities in the past.

Engineering Management Graduate, Engineering at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

You don't need experience in the industry but you need to show that you are able to manage projects and people - give examples of projects you've led at uni, or maybe a charity event you've organised. Research the industry and relate your own experiences to it. Check the company's Vision and Values, and make sure you answer these directly.

Interview Advice:

Same as the interview stage, but make sure you really understand the industry - its challenges, innovations, trends - and know First's involvement in these. Make sure that you show confidence and enthusiasm, and interact well with the other candidates and assessors.

Graduate Operations Manager, FirstBus – Graduate at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Try to understand the business and ethos of the company. It is a very competitive process, with various interview stages. Focus on each one as it comes.

Interview Advice:

Be yourself.

Engineering Contracts Manager, Engineering at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Make sure you are in a position to/and happy to move around the UK for placements. This scheme relies on you being proactive with your own development, be prepared to have to work at creating your own development plan.

Interview Advice:

There is a very open, friendly and down to earth culture across all First Group businesses. If you successfully make it to our assessment centre make sure to use this time not only to "showcase" your skills but equally your personality. We want to get to know you and you should want to get to know those assessing at the interviews as you'll likely be working with them one day!

Rail Operations Management Graduate Trainee, at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Consider carefully what you want to get out of the scheme.

Interview Advice:

Make sure you think questions through before answering.

Operations Graduate, UK Bus at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Say why you would be relevant for the role based on past experience, that's a huge bonus.

Interview Advice:

Be honest, talk loud.

FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Do not get too stressed with the numerical reasoning tests. The process is not to see who can get 100% in the time frame, it is there to test how you work out an answer and what logical steps you take. You don't need to answer 100% to pass.

Interview Advice:

Be yourself. As a company, FirstGroup appreciates genuine people who are down to earth and able to socialise as well as act professional. Come to the interview, be yourself, and let us see the real you. That's the person we will be working with, so we want to know what you're like just as much as how good your knowledge of the rail industry etc. is.
Also, the interview process is a time for you to assess us as a company. Ask yourself if you feel we are a company you could work for and be happy to be a part of. If you don't feel it is right, then don't feel afraid to say so. At the end of the day, nobody wants to work in a position they don't enjoy.

Rail Operations Management Graduate, Major Projects and New Fleets at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

-Don't try and be what you 'think' any companies that you are applying want you to be - be yourself.
-Operations can mean some odd hours and unglamorous locations - just have a reality check about whether that sort of environment is right for you.

(Rail) Operations Graduate Management Trainee, Rail Operations at FirstGroup
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Interview Advice:

Ensure you know the company's values and have an associated example of how you relate to them; talk about the importance of public transport to a city.

Marketing Graduate, Marketing at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Read broadly about the company and the sector; have a few opinions about it before you apply!

Interview Advice:

Be honest - you'll be expected to sign up to work funny hours and be thrown out of your comfort zone. If that's not what you want from your job then perhaps it's not for you.

Rail Operations Graduate, at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Practice numerical and verbal assessment tests, and if you're invited to an assessment centre do your research on the company.

Interview Advice:

Give SMART examples of the experiences you've had.

Operations Management Graduate Trainee, Rail at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Be open minded and enthusiastic. The transportation industry others a wealth of experiences and daily challenges for those who are willing to get stuck in.

Interview Advice:

Have a good appreciation for the challenges the industry faces, for example, technology, competitors and congestion.

Operations and Management Graduate, Operations at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Research core First Group competencies, and look into broader railway (and bus) environment - the challenges and opportunities ahead.

Interview Advice:

Full day assessment centre - be yourself, and don't let one bad session put you down. Selection is based on overall performance and attitude on the day.

FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Do your research, understand the values, be mentally prepared for the realities of the role/railway. It's not 9-5 in an air-conditioned office!

Interview Advice:

Be able to back up your words, don't be fluffy, have 'concrete' examples. Show reflection on your examples, even where things went well.

Operations Graduate Management Trainee, GWR at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Practice online tests, have a good understanding of the way the industry is heading and its challenges.

Interview Advice:

Research the industry and role and highlight how your strengths lie both in a technical and managerial capacity.

Engineering Graduate Management Trainee, Great Western Railway at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Read through corporate documents on www.firstgroup.com, understand the company's aim and core values.

Interview Advice:

Always consider how your answers relate to the company's aim and core values, all widely available on First's website. Provide evidence for your answers.

Operations Management Graduate Trainee, at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

It is not 9-5 and you need to be good at talking and relating to a wide range of people.

Interview Advice:

Be open and honest.

Graduate Manager, at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

It's a sector like no other - people skills and determination to make a change are crucial. We're a sector in dire need of new ideas and fresh thinking.

Interview Advice:

Answer honestly and try and get experience in any area that involves managing a team. This scheme is to develop managers not necessarily technical skills.

Graduate Trainee, Bus at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

If you are the kind of person who requires a varied role that offers different challenges day after day, someone who would get bored sitting in an office and completing mundane tasks, then this is the industry for you. Jut get involved in any capacity and before long you will be working on issues and challenges you would have never previously envisaged.

Interview Advice:

The First Group Graduate application process is a challenging one, as is any graduate application process. Rail knowledge is not essential, the organisation is looking for customer focused people with great strategic skills. On this basis, come in with a positive attitude, let your personality shine through and demonstrate you have an analytical and strategic mind in solving issues.

Operations Graduate, Operations at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Ensure that you would be confident to take on a management role straight after the graduate scheme.

Operation Management Trainee, at FirstGroup
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Interview Advice:

Take your time when answering interview questions, think how your answers relate into the companies core values.

Engineering Management Graduate Trainne, at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Get some experience under your belt first.

Interview Advice:

Sell yourself as a 'go anywhere, do anything' individual. But, you've got to mean it. Be passionate.

Operations Graduate, Rail at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Plenty of research. Try to get some experience of the products. Be proactive, go mystery shopping etc. Show willingness to be taken out of comfort zone.

Interview Advice:

Research around the company but mainly just be confident, be honest and be yourself. First are looking for real personalities to fit into the business. Not just a person with experience or a degree. Being open and honest goes a long way.

Graduate Engineering Management Trainee, Engineering at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Be honest with your experience and see how it can be applied to working in an environment most graduates won't be used to.

Management Trainee, Bus at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Supply some evidence of extra curricular activities to set you aside from all those with the same degree level as you.

Graduate Engineering management trainee, Engineering at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

1. Be passionate about the industry
2. Be willing to try new things and experiences

Operations Management Trainee, Bus Operations at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Have an open mind and put yourself foward for all opportunities.

Interview Advice:

Long interview process. You need to be used to assessment days and competency questions.

Mangement Graduate, Rail at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Be Honest. You will get questioned on your CV.

Study the company, aim to know a vast amount to ensure you understand the questions.

Interview Advice:

Mystery Shop, actively go and try our products and provide feedback and suggestions

Understand and appreciate how important health and safety culture is at the core of our business and relate this back to your interview questions

Relate the businesses core values of the business to previous roles or uni experiences.

Explain clearly the links between uni experience/job experience to how they could be applied within the business

Act confidently naturally and be friendly. The business needs a good personality.

Graduate Engineerng Management Trainee, Engineering at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

If you don't want to be stuck behind a desk day in day out, apply for a role at this company. You will be challenged on so many levels. It is easy to complete the same task over and over and become an expert. Here you will be pushed out of your comfort zone on a daily basis. You will be allowed to express yourself in some difficult environments and really challenge the skills you have developed. Overall, you will have great fun and meet lots of new people that will no doubt change your life!

Interview Advice:

Understand the companies CORE Values. Ensure that you can display these values across the whole of the Assessment period. Have fun and most of all, be yourself!

Operations Graduate Manager, First Great Western at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Research the company and the industry/sectors it serves - consider the current economic climate of the industry and the importance of both safety and the customer experience.

Interview Advice:

Again, consider safety and the customer in everything you do. First Group are looking to develop future leaders through this scheme, future leaders for the business and the wider industry, so consider how you would lead a team (of various sizes), what skills you have already developed and what skills you want to develop through the scheme. There's no problem with being ambitious but back it up with clear intentions/actions from previous experiences/university.

Rail Operations Management Graduate, Rail Operations at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Research into the company's values thoroughly especially its commitment to safety.

Interview Advice:

First are looking for the next generation of leaders who can transform and keep the business evolving so be prepared to say things like "I have looked at the way they do X in this industry, it is something that the Rail/Bus industry would really benefit from because of Y" etc.

Graduate Operations Manager, at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Be yourself and show your personality. Also research the field your applying for and make sure you understand the potential roles that you will be experiencing during your placements.

Interview Advice:

Do your research on the company ethos and think about whether it aligns with your own values. Also be prepared to back up your statements.

Engineering Management Graduate, Rail at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

PREPARE. Do your work experience. Know what you're talking about.
BE enthusiastic.
BE PREPARED to go the extra mile.
SHOW how you will make a difference to the business.
SHOW you have people skills (i.e. can you have a 5 minute conversation with an absolute stranger and not feel awkward?)
SHOW how you can communicate effectively.

DON'T feel like you have to know everything about trains or transport, that is really not necessary.

Interview Advice:

Be calm,
Be prepared to show a range of examples illustrating your competencies,
I used examples from my work experience in the transport industry as university examples are shared by every single person applying.

Management Graduate, ScotRail at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Really research the company and think whether you would be suited to the industry or not

Interview Advice:

I was asked what I saw the future of transport to be? What are the threats and opporunties for the business. I was asked examples of times I was committed to safety and where I led teams.

Operations Management Trainee, at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Have a good understanding and knowledge of the sector you are applying for

Interview Advice:

Practice competency questions and focus on people/communication skills

Rail Engineering Graduate, Rail Engineering at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Confidence and understanding. Learn about the companies core values and show interest in the industry, its effect on the economy and the vehicles used throughout. For the engineering roles learn about maintinence tasks and the importance of good reliable and safe maintinence practices.

Interview Advice:

Industry Knowledge?
Engineering maintinence?
Companies core values?
Previous work experience?
University experiences?
How experiences relate to role?

Graduate Engineering Management Trainee, Engineering at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Be passionate about the Transportation industry, as with most jobs, ensure that you actually like the field that you are eventually going to start your career in.

Interview Advice:

Most people working in the Transportation industry are transport enthusiasts, so it wouldn't hurt to name a few buses or train classes in an interview, if the opportunity arose. This is sure to show your passion and enthusiasm for the industry, if it doesn't then it at least suggests that you have a genuine interest in the industry.

Bus Operations Graduate, at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Candidates need to be adaptable and flexible as much as possible.

Interview Advice:

Be yourself!!

Engineering Graduate, Sheffield at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Fully research the role and the industry so you know it is for you.

Interview Advice:

Safety and customer service are key talking points.

Graduate Trainee Manager, Bus Operations at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Find out as much about the company as you can, such as current and previous projects and their overall company goals. Also get as much advice as you can about answering competency based questions.

Interview Advice:

Find out as much about the railway and bus division as you can, such as previous, current and upcoming projects and events.

Graduate engineer, at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Read up on the company, the graduate scheme and the industry. Make sure it is the sort of company you want to work for and the scheme offers you what you want from it.

Interview Advice:

Prepare for a normal interview, review what you've done for the last few years - internships, projects etc. - and make sure you know the basics about the company and the industry they work in. They don't expect you to be an expert but do want to see that you have taken some time to understand what you are applying for and that you are committed to taking the role if they offer you it.

Rail Engineering Graduate Manager Trainee, Rail at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Have an interest in the industry and something extra curricular that makes you stand out (it would be great if these were the same thing).

Interview Advice:

Be engaging and talkative. Be yourself.

Graduate Engineering Management Trainee, Management at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Take time with your application and try to understand the values of the company. Demonstrating how you reflect these is key to your application and remember it's a customer service industry.

Interview Advice:

Think about how you have handled demanding customer based situations. Often it is the approach that the example demonstrates that's important; not necessarily the example itself.

Management Graduate Trainee, Group at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Ensure you do your research on First Group and the background of the business. Then focus your ideas on the area of business you intend to join.

Stay aware of current issues by reading the website, news, transport magazines.

Interview Advice:

Know your information, be confident in your ability and relax.

Operations graduate management trainee, FCC at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Great customer service is all important.

Interview Advice:

Be as enthusiastic as possible. Review the corporate responsibility statement on the group website before interview.

Operations management trainee, Operations at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Be yourself and demonstrate how you are inline with the First Group values:
Committed to our customers
Dedicated to safety
Supportive of each other
Accountable for performance
Setting the highest standards

Also the 4 C's of the Railway:
Customers
Carbon
Cost
Capacity

Interview Advice:

Same as the applicaton advice but be aware of modern engineering maintenance techniques like lean, RCM and 5s.

Rail Engineering Graduate, First Great Western Engineering at FirstGroup
Read the full review »


Application Advice:

Research the business before applying. Learn about the industry structure and its challenges.

Interview Advice:

Prepare examples in advance for competency based questions.

Management Graduate Trainee, Bus Operations/Commercial at FirstGroup
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Application Advice:

Research the company and current market affairs surrounding the industry. Prepare presentations thoroughly, be enthusiastic and positive and eager to take on responsibility.

Interview Advice:

SWOT Analysis
Your strengths/weaknesses
General overview of yourself and your characteristics and how they match the companies Values and competencies.

Commercial Graduate, at FirstGroup
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Best:

Lots of opportunities, lots of investment in the people

Worst:

Heavily unionised which leads to a lot of people who are demotivated as they have been in the same role for too long

Duty Station Manager, Operations at FirstGroup
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Best:

Everyone is willing to help.

Worst:

There are 500 hundred drivers to take control of.

Graduate Manager, Bus Operations at FirstGroup
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Best:

sector we are employed in as gives chance to make a difference.

Worst:

big company = slow to react.

Driver Standards Manager, Rail Operations at FirstGroup
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Best:

Day-to-day operations are diverse and present new challenges all the time.

Worst:

The treatment of female managers by the bus drivers and/or engineers - it is very difficult to gain their respect.

Litigation Assistant, Insurance at FirstGroup
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Best:

Very large organisation so lots of opportunities available

Worst:

Sometimes lacks the personal touch of companies I have worked for in the past.

Driver Manager, Operations at FirstGroup
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Best:

People, opportunities and 'family feel' atmosphere.

Worst:

n/a

Operations and Management Graduate, First Bus at FirstGroup
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Best:

Supportive.
Invest in your future.
Value graduates.

Worst:

Turbulent time for the industry.
Often unclear succession planning.

Project Engineer, Major Projects at FirstGroup
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Best:

Open to change and very supportive of their Graduate program.

Worst:

A large, often complex company which can take some time to get your head around, particularly when it comes to decision making and following a chain of responsibility.

Engineering Management Graduate, Engineering at FirstGroup
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Best:

The company really invests in their Graduates and provides a lot of training.

Worst:

Things are done completely differently across each Operating Company - some people may see this as a downside, as it may take a lot of time to adjust to. (Some however may see this is another plus!)

Graduate Operations Manager, FirstBus – Graduate at FirstGroup
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Best:

The opportunities for funded training (from short First Aid training to MBA's!). First Group recognise that to help the business improve they must develop their people but equally to keep people engaged and motivated developing their areas of expertise or interest is also key. This support also extends to career development. You may start off in the business as a Driver Manager but later want to make a move into a Safety Role and then further down the line want to switch to a training role - regardless First Group remain supportive.

Worst:

I'm struggling to think of anything I really dislike! I think the lessons learned and best practise learnt from our Bus Divisions could be better shared with Rail and vice versa.

Rail Operations Management Graduate Trainee, at FirstGroup
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Best:

Many sub companies i can work with.

FirstGroup
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Best:

The ability to spend long periods of time at different rail companies allows you to see how different sized organisations handle every day processes and times of disruption. It is great to get this exposure of different practices.

Worst:

In spending time at different rail companies, you can find yourself moving around the country for living and this can have an effect on your personal and social lives.

Rail Operations Management Graduate, Major Projects and New Fleets at FirstGroup
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Best:

Career progression opportunities

Worst:

Attitudes of some staff who refuse all change or progress outright.

(Rail) Operations Graduate Management Trainee, Rail Operations at FirstGroup
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Best:

The company is large so there's lots of opportunities to move around and work in different areas; the company has a formal graduate training programme so graduates can do different courses and qualifications; the people are generally friendly and helpful.

Worst:

Limited opportunities for international travel.

Marketing Graduate, Marketing at FirstGroup
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Best:

Varied opportunities

Worst:

Lots of moving around, no one's responsibility.

Rail Operations Graduate, at FirstGroup
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Best:

The variety of opportunities.

Worst:

n/a

Operations and Management Graduate, Operations at FirstGroup
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