interview process

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interview process

Postby chris36 » Mon Oct 15, 2012 11:01 am

i have been invited to a interview for a freight conductor!can some one pleases give some details on what to be prepared for.
such as the test that i will take....what type of questions will be on there??
also if you could tell a few of the interview questions that i will be asked??

thanks so much
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Re: interview process

Postby connielex » Tue Oct 14, 2014 12:20 pm

Hello Chris....I just attended a hiring session for NS in Bourbonnaise, Illinois. It was very informative....be sure to dress the part....I was told to wear khakis and a polo but you can wear interview attire as well. Bring a pen and notebook to take notes, be early because they were turning people away who were late....I got there at 7:52am and they were already taking attendance. It started at 8am. Take notes, ask questions, be attentive to the HR Rep, Train master, Assistant Train master, and Engineer. You will also take an assessment...like the online one.....if you pass that you will be interviewed that day by HR, Train master, and Assistant Train master......it is a lot of information so be prepared...get plenty of sleep the night before....eat a light breakfast so that you don't fall asleep while in the first part of the session.....If you make it to the interview be sure to answer all questions diligently, clearly and be honest.....At the end when they ask do you have questions for them be sure to ask at least one good question...You will be fine...they will explain what is needed beyond the interview.
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Re: interview process

Postby Dewoc19 » Fri Oct 17, 2014 10:55 am

If you are serious about getting the job you need to make sure you tell them how important safety is to you, how you work safe and how going home safe at the end of the day are all high priorities to you
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Re: interview process

Postby bcgfdc3 » Tue Oct 21, 2014 11:13 pm

I recently attended a hiring session for a conductor position and was fortunate enough to be granted an interview. One question was asked of me that really stumped me due to my not being completely familiar with the railroad. The question was: "You are the conductor and you and your engineer have had a long day and just want to get back. Your engineer is speeding. What do you do?" I gave the obvious answer of ask him to slow down. The response "he refuses" So I was confused by the whole hierarchy of the train. So, the conductor is in charge of the train but you get promoted to engineer. But how are you promoted to engineer if the conductor has more authority? This baffled me and I think is why I did not receive further consideration. I eventually got the right answer that they wanted to hear but it took some coaxing.

So for the experienced people on the railroad, how would you handle this scenario if it really happened? You cannot physically fight and remove the engineer from the controls, can you? Is there controls for the conductor? Not sure exactly how to accomplish this without really seeing the inside of an engine.

Thanks,
Rick
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Re: interview process

Postby Dewoc19 » Wed Oct 22, 2014 1:31 pm

It's a promotion in the sense that you don't have to pound The rocks anymore, you make a little bit more of a wage and get a performance bonus at the end of the year, but truth be told it's not really a promotion. When you go to engine school you are usually the oldest conductor, able to hold the best job with weekends off, you go to engine school and go back on the engineer's extraboard making less money with no days off and being on call, it's a terrible "promotion"

The conductor has all the power on the train, the engineer does what the conductor tells him to do until you are physically on the road then the engineer drives the train and has all the power.

As far as a engineer speeding goes all the conductor has on his side of the engine is an emergency brake handle, if he is speeding and won't slow down, they full on expect you to dump the train into emergency
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Re: interview process

Postby bcgfdc3 » Thu Oct 23, 2014 2:16 pm

Thank you for your response.

Is there recording equipment monitoring speed etc. that would back me up and justify my going into emergency?
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Re: interview process

Postby Dewoc19 » Fri Oct 24, 2014 1:48 pm

Yes, very extensive computer system that records everything with a time stamp. It will tell the road foreman everything from what notch the he is in, if he used any braking (independent, automatic or dynamic) speed traveling, what time you pulled emergency handle etc etc, there's basically nothing it won't record in relation that the train
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Re: interview process

Postby newpylong » Mon Nov 10, 2014 3:47 pm

Dewoc19 wrote:It's a promotion in the sense that you don't have to pound The rocks anymore, you make a little bit more of a wage and get a performance bonus at the end of the year, but truth be told it's not really a promotion. When you go to engine school you are usually the oldest conductor, able to hold the best job with weekends off, you go to engine school and go back on the engineer's extraboard making less money with no days off and being on call, it's a terrible "promotion"

The conductor has all the power on the train, the engineer does what the conductor tells him to do until you are physically on the road then the engineer drives the train and has all the power.

As far as a engineer speeding goes all the conductor has on his side of the engine is an emergency brake handle, if he is speeding and won't slow down, they full on expect you to dump the train into emergency


Pay attention to this, he is spot on.

You will be in charge of the train, even being green off the street. Chances are the engineer will have a lot more experience, so pay attention to him, but do not be afraid to let the hierarchy be known if there are issues. The engineer moves the train, but he takes your motions.

If your engineer refuses to stay at or near the speed limit (the FRA allows temporary deviations), pull the plug on the train.
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Re: interview process

Postby Marnos » Mon Aug 31, 2015 11:47 am

Dewoc19 wrote:It's a promotion in the sense that you don't have to pound The rocks anymore, you make a little bit more of a wage and get a performance bonus at the end of the year, but truth be told it's not really a promotion. When you go to engine school you are usually the oldest conductor, able to hold the best job with weekends off, you go to engine school and go back on the engineer's extraboard making less money with no days off and being on call, it's a terrible "promotion"

The conductor has all the power on the train, the engineer does what the conductor tells him to do until you are physically on the road then the engineer drives the train and has all the power.

As far as a engineer speeding goes all the conductor has on his side of the engine is an emergency brake handle, if he is speeding and won't slow down, they full on expect you to dump the train into emergency


Okay, FINALLY it makes sense to me. I have sat in on several NS Conductor events going "I don't understand. The conductor is the junior employee but you keep saying they are in charge of everything on the train".

That sounds like a very interesting dynamic. Almost sounds like a conductor is somewhat like the crew chief of a military helicopter or airplane.

Thanks for that post, this helps me out A LOT !!

Now if only I could get another interview with NS or CSX so I can actually make use of this knowledge lol
Buckeye born, Buckeye Proud.
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