Govia Thameslink Railway Timetable Planner Interview Questions | Glassdoor

Govia Thameslink Railway Timetable Planner Interview Questions

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Timetable Planner Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate in Croydon, England (UK)
No Offer
Negative Experience
Difficult Interview


I applied online. The process took 2+ months. I interviewed at Govia Thameslink Railway (Croydon, England (UK)) in August 2018.


The next month a number of jobs were advertised on the Govia website and they were looking for trainee timetablers. So, I decided to apply for the position and the first stage was filling in an online application form.

This was relatively straight forward, I received the following notification from them to confirm that my application had been submitted.

Application shortlist confirmation

A week or so later I received an email to confirm that I had been shortlisted to attend an assessment day and I had to schedule a day I was free to complete my assessment as shown here.

Assessment shortlisting email

I received another notification as shown here to confirm that my assessment day had been booked for 20 August 2018 at the Govia headquarters in Croydon, London.

Application Shortlist Email Booking

I attended the assessment day on the Monday and there were a group of 6 candidates.
The day was hosted by a lady called Madeline and the assessment lasted for 45 minutes in total.
The first thing she stated was that the salary was 20k per year and this was non-negotiable we will come back to this truth or lie later.
I kept thinking to myself that this was a very unusual thing to say at the start of an assessment day. It was akin to being 13-year-old in a classroom test and being told that you cannot ask for a time extension for an exam.
The assessment was divided in to 3 sections the first section included a series of timetables on the Great Northern route and there were reams of 6 paper timetables.
The objective was to find out how many train drivers or crew it would take to run the timetable. This process was extremely challenging and it had to be completed in 15 minutes.

The next section was comprised of the following: network rail had made a number of changes to the timetable in fact they had made 9 changes and how would this affect your answer to the previous question?
And the final 2 questions were to do with a passenger journey from Sutton to Gatwick and there were reams of timetables that we had to use to work out what trains they needed to catch in order to get there for a flight.
I managed to get to the penultimate question towards the end and we all had to explain our reasoning behind our answers. I walked out of there in a daze and I spoke to a lot of the other candidates, most of them said that they couldn’t event finish section 1.
I arrived home and I checked the website once again to see what other jobs Govia were offering and I was flabbergasted to find that they had re-advertised the trainee timetable planner job for 25k.

Interview Questions

  • The objective was to find out how many train drivers or crew it would take to run the great northern timetable.   2 Answers
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