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NSAR rolls out pilot to close digital rail skills gap

The National Skills Academy Rail (NSAR) has been awarded a grant to encourage young unemployed adults into careers with digital rail.

The grant, awarded by UFI Charitable Trust, will fund a pilot of “Trax,” a digital programme hosting a series of videos exploring the roles and skills of rail employees.

Young adults will be able to access the videos via mobile devices and social media sites.

Initially the pilot will focus on reaching the 60,000 unemployed young people in London and the south east of England through the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) Job Centre Plus network.

It is hoped that the 18-24 year-olds who will complete the video courses are signposted to job roles within digital rail or be directed to other opportunities through NSAR Connect and the National Training Partnership.

Following the pilot, Trax will be rolled out across the UK to support the industry in filling the predicted 5,000 digital roles, whilst addressing its employment diversity targets.

Rail minister, Paul Maynard, explained: “We are delivering the greatest investment in our railways since Victorian times to give passengers the services they rightly expect.

“Digital railways are an important part of that transformation and will allow us to run a greater number of services for passengers.

“It is vital that the next generation of rail employees have the skills to operate in this exciting new environment.”

David Waboso, managing director of Digital Rail, said that Britain’s network is the fastest growing in Europe, and “digital modernisation is the best value way to deliver the capacity and performance improvements required to sustain it.”

Mike Brown, TfL commissioner and NSAR and STAT chair added: “I welcome the opportunity that this project will open up for young adults to explore the possibilities of a career within the digital rail industry.”


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