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Joined
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Hey folks. So I've applied for a position in my area, "motor equipment operator". The status has changed to "manager review" but has been at that status for awhile now.

I know the hiring process is slow but is that a good sign? Or could it mean nothing at all?

Thanks a million.
 
Joined
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Messages
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How long is a while, and what area are you applying to?
Correct sanford fl. It was updated feb 2nd. The most confusing part is this under " job specific information" when I'm viewing the job I applied for.
 

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neroden

Engineer
Joined
Feb 23, 2014
Messages
9,548
Location
Ithaca, NY
Hey folks. So I've applied for a position in my area, "motor equipment operator". The status has changed to "manager review" but has been at that status for awhile now.

I know the hiring process is slow but is that a good sign?

It is a good sign in that it means someone is actually looking at your application. A lot of people have had complete information blackouts for essentially forever after applying, so you're doing better than that.

The things you were wondering about: they are probably doing a background check on you, which isn't done yet. They will also be making sure you are vaccinated for Covid-19 and willing to wear a mask at work.
 

bmjhagen9426

OBS Chief
Joined
Apr 16, 2014
Messages
796
Location
North Sacramento, California
I am semi-seriously considering getting into railroading with Amtrak, and I figured that I’d ask some current/former Amtrak employees about certain specifics as it pertains to crew bases, possible train assignment, and distance requirements from bases. As someone who lives who lives in Woodland, CA (20 minutes drive to Downtown Sacramento, and up to 1.5 hour drive to Oakland, both assuming favorable traffic), competing for the Sacramento base will be a logical choice. Based on the fact as to where I live and how long it takes me to get to either base areas, would getting to the Oakland crew base be considered a long shot, even if I were to drive there? As for the 2-hour rule for distance between home and crew base, is it for just conductors, drivers, yard/road/foremen, or station staff, or does it also apply to OBS crew as well? And also how hiring process for applicants like? And how is training like for OBS and/or T&E crew like, and where are Western LD OBS’s are based out, and what crews are based out of Sacramento and Oakland crew bases, and by extension, in the Pacific coast states (CA, OR, and WA), and what trains could I be on if I were to get assigned to those crew bases? Answers from Amtrak current or former employees, either by reply here, or by private messages, will be appreciated.
 
Joined
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Wow, a lot of questions...LOL.. I believe the 2 hour rule applies to OBS as well. Crew bases for OBS are Oak, Lax and Sea. Oak primarily does the San Joaquin service. Lax handles train 3/4, 1/2 and San Diego service. Sea handles 7/8 and the Vancouver/Portland corridor. Training for OBS is approx. 2 weeks of classroom training followed by training trips on board the train. For Conductors, you will spend 4-6 weeks classroom training in Wilmington DE, then return and do student trips out of assigned crew base. The hiring process is somewhat haphazard with interviews, passing physical and drug testing, lack of communication sometimes, etc.

Hope this helps...if you have more specific questions feel free to PM me. I believe we both belong to same Amtrak Facebook group organized by Jay Marking.
 

bmjhagen9426

OBS Chief
Joined
Apr 16, 2014
Messages
796
Location
North Sacramento, California
Wow, a lot of questions...LOL.. I believe the 2 hour rule applies to OBS as well. Crew bases for OBS are Oak, Lax and Sea. Oak primarily does the San Joaquin service. Lax handles train 3/4, 1/2 and San Diego service. Sea handles 7/8 and the Vancouver/Portland corridor. Training for OBS is approx. 2 weeks of classroom training followed by training trips on board the train. For Conductors, you will spend 4-6 weeks classroom training in Wilmington DE, then return and do student trips out of assigned crew base. The hiring process is somewhat haphazard with interviews, passing physical and drug testing, lack of communication sometimes, etc.

Hope this helps...if you have more specific questions feel free to PM me. I believe we both belong to same Amtrak Facebook group organized by Jay Marking.
I will be PM-ing you soon. Please check your inbox in the next few hours. I will either edit this reply or reply to this once sent.
 

bmjhagen9426

OBS Chief
Joined
Apr 16, 2014
Messages
796
Location
North Sacramento, California
Wow, a lot of questions...LOL.. I believe the 2 hour rule applies to OBS as well. Crew bases for OBS are Oak, Lax and Sea. Oak primarily does the San Joaquin service. Lax handles train 3/4, 1/2 and San Diego service. Sea handles 7/8 and the Vancouver/Portland corridor. Training for OBS is approx. 2 weeks of classroom training followed by training trips on board the train. For Conductors, you will spend 4-6 weeks classroom training in Wilmington DE, then return and do student trips out of assigned crew base. The hiring process is somewhat haphazard with interviews, passing physical and drug testing, lack of communication sometimes, etc.

Hope this helps...if you have more specific questions feel free to PM me. I believe we both belong to same Amtrak Facebook group organized by Jay Marking.
PM sent, please check your PM inbox at your earliest convenience.
 

bmjhagen9426

OBS Chief
Joined
Apr 16, 2014
Messages
796
Location
North Sacramento, California
Since Amtrak seems to be looking for people (at least when I applied), do you think Class 1s are also looking for people to try to join their ranks? I’m thinking that in the unfortunate circumstance that Amtrak decides against me, I might try with Class 1s if they need extra man power.
 

bmjhagen9426

OBS Chief
Joined
Apr 16, 2014
Messages
796
Location
North Sacramento, California
Update: looks like one of the crew bases (Oakland) decided to move forward with me (as I apparantly passed their SAP Success Factors ATS/HRIS). Now supposed to have a physical strength exam in 2 days. What should I expect, in addition to the obvious (range of motion and muscular strength), on test day? And what happens after that exam, and assuming if there are no complications along the way, and if they do decide to hire me, what trains could I be conducting on, once training is finished? (I would be guessing on the Capitols, CA Zephyr, and SJ’s as their operational crew originates there, but I could be mistaken)
 

Bob Dylan

50+ Year Amtrak Rider
AU Supporting Member
Joined
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24,887
Location
Austin Texas
Update: looks like one of the crew bases (Oakland) decided to move forward with me (as I apparantly passed their SAP Success Factors ATS/HRIS). Now supposed to have a physical strength exam in 2 days. What should I expect, in addition to the obvious (range of motion and muscular strength), on test day? And what happens after that exam, and assuming if there are no complications along the way, and if they do decide to hire me, what trains could I be conducting on, once training is finished? (I would be guessing on the Capitols, CA Zephyr, and SJ’s as their operational crew originates there, but I could be mistaken)
You left out the Coast Starlight since it calls @ Oakland also.

Good luck, keep us posted!
 

bmjhagen9426

OBS Chief
Joined
Apr 16, 2014
Messages
796
Location
North Sacramento, California
You left out the Coast Starlight since it calls @ Oakland also.
Per my experience, and what I was told by a personal friend of mine who was a conductor based out of SAC, only the train drivers change at OAK. I’d like to be assigned to the CA Zephyr, but that might be a longshot as, what I suspect, a new conductor-trainee, they may be more inclined to give me Capitols or SJ’s to BFD or at the trainyard marshalling train cars, while giving the Zephyr to more senior ones.
 

Bob Dylan

50+ Year Amtrak Rider
AU Supporting Member
Joined
May 31, 2009
Messages
24,887
Location
Austin Texas
Per my experience, and what I was told by a personal friend of mine who was a conductor based out of SAC, only the train drivers change at OAK. I’d like to be assigned to the CA Zephyr, but that might be a longshot as, what I suspect, a new conductor-trainee, they may be more inclined to give me Capitols or SJ’s to BFD or at the trainyard marshalling train cars, while giving the Zephyr to more senior ones.
Well, the Zephyr originates in the Oakland Yards and boards in Emeryville, while the Starlight runs LAX to Seattle.

I would have sworn the T&E Crews used to change in Oakland, but it could be Emeryville for the Conductors as you were told??
 

Acela150

Super Buff
Joined
Jan 11, 2008
Messages
9,105
Location
Somewhere between here and there
Well, the Zephyr originates in the Oakland Yards and boards in Emeryville, while the Starlight runs LAX to Seattle.

I would have sworn the T&E Crews used to change in Oakland, but it could be Emeryville for the Conductors as you were told??

Crews change out in in SAC for sure Jim, I can't remember if they swap out in EMY or not, but I doubt it.

Update: looks like one of the crew bases (Oakland) decided to move forward with me (as I apparantly passed their SAP Success Factors ATS/HRIS). Now supposed to have a physical strength exam in 2 days. What should I expect, in addition to the obvious (range of motion and muscular strength), on test day? And what happens after that exam, and assuming if there are no complications along the way, and if they do decide to hire me, what trains could I be conducting on, once training is finished? (I would be guessing on the Capitols, CA Zephyr, and SJ’s as their operational crew originates there, but I could be mistaken)

See the videos in the link that I'll attach. If you pass the strength test then it's up to HR if you get interviewed.

I can tell you that Oakland has a bunch of Extra Board openings right now. I know that they run the local corridor trains out of Oakland.

If you have any questions shoot me a PM.

 

Acela150

Super Buff
Joined
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Messages
9,105
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Somewhere between here and there
Update (9:30 PDT, 3/18/2022): It looks like I will be evaluated for Sacramento base as well as Oakland
Update 2: (17:30 PDT, 3/18/2022): Testing is done, should know by Monday whether or not I get the interview. The test is no joke. Was told that I should get a phone call if I get to interview.

Just as an FYI, you'll only need to take the test once for both jobs. If your result is a passing result, it's valid for one year. So should you not be selected for said jobs, and you have passed said test, you won't have to take it again until 3/18/2023.

If you did not pass the test, then you can retest in 90 days.

Just out of curousity who said that youl'' know by Monday if you'll be interviewed?
 

bmjhagen9426

OBS Chief
Joined
Apr 16, 2014
Messages
796
Location
North Sacramento, California
Just as an FYI, you'll only need to take the test once for both jobs. If your result is a passing result, it's valid for one year. So should you not be selected for said jobs, and you have passed said test, you won't have to take it again until 3/18/2023.

If you did not pass the test, then you can retest in 90 days.

Just out of curousity who said that youl'' know by Monday if you'll be interviewed?
The IPCS says that they will communicate with Amtrak after wknd is over on Mon, and as for finding out on Mon, that is my guesstimation. I could be predicting it for days too early.
 
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