The first step to becoming an employee for any railroad is to investigate what the various jobs entail. The primary responsibilities of a many of the crafts do no vary significantly between the various major railroads, so browse all of their websites. Online message boards can provide insight into others’ experience, but keep in mind that those with negative experiences will always tend to be the most vocal and that experiences between departments or even regions can vary dramatically even within the same company.
Once you’ve done your research, it’s time to apply. Each of the Class I railroads accepts applications online – so browse their site for positions that appeal to you. Keep in mind that relocation expenses are not typically covered for craft positions.
Once your online application has been submitted, the system will automatically filter applicants based on the minimum requirements for the requested position. If you are rejected at this stage, your hiring manager does not typically even become aware that you applied. Applications that make it through the initial filters are reviewed by the hiring manager, who then selects candidates to interview. If selected, the potential employer will contact you for next steps.
Check back later for more content to be added. If there is a particular position you would like us to add next, please reach out & let us know!!
|Language Proficiency (Read & Write)||English||English||Yes||Yes|
|Prior Experience||Yes, as Switchman or Brakeman||1 year||None||3-5 years|
|High School Diploma/GED||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Training Period||14 weeks||3 weeks at training center
9-15 weeks on-the-job training at assigned location
|7 weeks at training center
45+ training trips
- Positions near international borders require passports
- Must be able to lift & carry a knuckle (77-90 lbs)
- Must be able to grasp and hold objects while riding side of a train
- On some railroads, ability to mount/dismount moving equipment
- Walking for extended periods in all weather and lighting conditions with variable terrain
- Bend, stoop, squat, kneel and crawl around and under freight cars
- On call 24 hours, subject to hours of service and contractual limitations.
Disclaimer: This page is intended only as a guide to the approximate minimum requirements for the various Class I railroads. Requirements may vary by location and by railroad and are subject to change at the railroad’s discretion. You are encouraged to research the specific requirements of any position you apply for and contact your prospective employer for specific requirements.