From Clippie to Rail Services Manager: Danielle’s Journey with Auckland One Rail
For Danielle it’s been an inspiring journey in rail, and her time has been full of growth.
What has been you career path?
“I have been here with Auckland railways for 15 years now, I started straight out of high school and into the railways. I started off as a clippie just on the trains doing tickets and then I progressed to a train manager which was a guard. I was a guard for a few years then stepped up to a driver role, from there I moved up into my current role now train services managers.”
What training have you had to complete in your role?
“As a train manager the course is eight weeks which is classroom work followed by on the job training which for three months. With driving trains, it is 12 weeks of classroom work followed by four weeks of driving on the service lines. Once you achieve this, you complete on the job training which takes six months. All up it’s about a year of training to be fully qualified. I completed the driver course four years ago.
“Previously, I had been a train manager for 10 years, so this was a personal journey to achieve this next step in my career. With the support of my work colleagues and believing in myself, I am in this role today because I stepped out of my comfort zone.”
What has been a learning outcome in your role?
“In my role I am the rail incident controller (RIC) and I deal with fatalities. As the RIC I attend the site and I oversee the whole site. This involves making sure everyone is safe, trying to get the network back up and progressing as fast as we can.
“The first incident I attended I was fortunate to have a senior driver manager with me for support. He walked me through everything. His guidance taught me how to interact with the variety of internal and external stakeholders that included police, fire brigade, maintenance team for the train and many more. All these different people trying to ensure everyone stays safe in the process. It was a huge learning curve for me as there were a variety of factors to take into consideration.”
What inspires you to go to work each day?
“I have always enjoyed the railways. I have loved every single one of my roles because they have each been completely different. Being around people, especially the team I work with, they are like family to me. I met my husband at work also, we have been together for 11 years.”
What advice would you give someone starting at Auckland One Rail?
“Honestly, just enjoy the job, it can be a fun place to work. There is a diverse group of people you get the opportunity to work with. Especially now with the FIFA Women’s event on, the atmosphere is fantastic to be at work.”
Auckland One Rail is a joint venture between UGL and ComfortDelGro Transit and has responsibility for train operations including provision of drivers and other train staff, development of timetables, station operations and maintenance, security, customer facing activities and revenue protection, and management of the Auckland Network Access Agreement and KiwiRail interface.