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West Somerset Railway General Discussion

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by gwr4090, Nov 15, 2007.

  1. Downline

    Downline New Member

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    Based on the post interactions I think it is you struggling to get the point. But i'm happy to agree to disagree to stop any pointless forward and back.

    But if you are a shareholder and think you have the right to ask and know, go and exercise that right and ask the WSR Plc. If they let you know, well done. But I personally don't feel any business should be expected to provide an explanation for a vacancy arising to those who are not linked to the company via employment, shares etc.
     
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  2. Bayard

    Bayard Well-Known Member

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    Once again, a criticism of the WSR is answered as if the WSR was just another company selling goods or services where all the shareholders care about is whether they can sell their shares at a profit. Why is it that some people cannot see the disconnect between "If you want to know stuff, sod off until the AGM and you can ask then" and "we need £x000 to do this latest project, give generously".
     
  3. gwilialan

    gwilialan Well-Known Member

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    From personal experience it is not unusual for an 'under contract' site manager to have the next job lined up before the finish of their current works. That is all very well so long as the timing works out... If the current job suddenly hits a problem that causes an overrun then the site manager may not be able to start their next job on time - which would either leave the next job short of a site manager for maybe a week or two, which could be OK if it's going to be a long job, but no good if it's only a little bit of works like this, hence the need for a short notice vacancy advert.

    I have not seen a scope of works for the crossing so going only on what's been discussed on various sites it appears as though it is only new barriers and mechanisms, CCTV, possibly RADAR, and a new control box with a remote interface to the signal box. Amey (or Amec or whatever they call themselves these days) are refurbishing crossings regularly, they know what needs doing (it's how we refurbished Bronwydd L/C in two days - handy having someone on the team that does that as a day job :)). I can see no problem with them managing the works They will have their own site manager anyway. All the WSR needs is someone from S&T to inspect the works, ensure it meets the specification (have you written one WSR?), complies with WSR and ORR standards for level crossings and act as the clients representative. I'd be very surprised if there is no one in the S&T team who would be capable of doing this
     
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  4. Steve

    Steve Resident of Nat Pres Friend

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    Years of experience tells me that if you have a caring, sharing, safe and efficient contractor on site doing a job you need someone on site, making sure that contractor remains caring, sharing, safe and efficient. It's all very well relying on volunteers but it soon becomes a burden to be there all the time when there are other calls on your time. I'm not saying that this is the case here but I can well imagine it. There are plenty of other scenarios that would fit the evolving plot. Everything starts out with the best of intentions then reality creps in and it is really no big deal, is it? It's management in action, making decisions as circumstances change. That's what managers do. At least, I hope that's what they do.
     
  5. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    I totally see the point of that, but for what is presumably a fairly short job actually on site, what surprises me is that the role isn't picked up by an existing member of staff, for example the infrastructure manager. Unless the appointment I being funded externally to the railway, i.e. by SCC?

    Tom
     
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  6. Downline

    Downline New Member

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    The WSR Plc is no different to any company when it comes to having to justify why they need to create or fill a vacant rule, I have never seen a business require the need to justify a vacancy to the general public. I'm sure if I wasted time scrolling the internet I will struggle to find a business with a vacancy of a similar nature with the type of explanation your expecting on why a role has become vacant. Unless you are some sort of employment expert and can provide a full in depth analysis of your experience of being employed, made redundant, or employed others to demonstrate I'm completely wrong...

    I feel you have nothing better to do than argue with me since you have now jumped onto the AGM comment, and people on here are now discussing sensible points about the vacancy, so I will leave you to have the honour of the final word.
     
  7. jnc

    jnc Well-Known Member

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    I could easily buy that - but then, why are they advertising the position?

    Noel
     
  8. John Williams

    John Williams New Member

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    It's a while since I was last under the yoke of employment, but back then, it was necessary to advertise certain posts 'externally' even when there was an 'internal' candidate obviously well suited. Didn't always make sense but was supposed to make things fair and transparent. Other circumstances may apply!

    With respect to WSR plc making any announcements on the level crossing, it seems to me that they're 'damned if they do and damned if they don't'.
     
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  9. richards

    richards Part of the furniture

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    The WSR-bashing brigade are also at risk of jumping to conclusions about the job advert. Is this actually the first time it's been advertised? Did someone get appointed (internally perhaps?) but couldn't take up the job? Has the appointed person been offered a better/different job elsewhere?

    I completely recognise that these questions totally undermine the opportunities for having a pop at the WSR. Sorry about that.
     
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  10. Bayard

    Bayard Well-Known Member

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    I will give you the benefit of the doubt and assume that you are arguing this way because you feel on unassailable ground there, despite it being obvious that you are once again answering a question that was not asked, and not because you are unable to see that it it is not what is being done, but the way that it is being done that is the problem.
     
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  11. Monkey Magic

    Monkey Magic Part of the furniture

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    Might it depend on who is paying for the site manager? If it were SCC, I assume they would want whoever it is to have been appointed in an appropriate way, that you have advertised openly, interviewed properly and kept the notes from the interviews and not just chucked the money to a mate.

    One of the ironies of public sector stuff, is that sometimes you will need paperwork in triplicate for a box of paper clips, while (as we can see) the large pots of money often go through on the nod.

    Aren't you just speculating and guessing, the very thing you berated others for doing? Doesn't that undermine everything you said yesterday?
     
  12. Bayard

    Bayard Well-Known Member

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    If you bothered to read the previous posts before rushing to defend the poor maligned WSR, you would see that most people accept that there is probably a reason for the late advertisement of the post other than incompetence. The criticism is that the WSR didn't ward off the impression of incompetence by giving that reason: "Due to the sudden unavailability of a member of staff, we now have a vacancy for a ...", a form of words that is common enough in the sits vac adverts, given the relative rarity of the situation arising in the first place.
     
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  13. Bayard

    Bayard Well-Known Member

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    Well, if SCC are paying for the site manager, the WSR may have assumed they could get one of their staff to fill the post, only to be told at a late stage by SCC, "no, you have to advertise the position".
     
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  14. Paulthehitch

    Paulthehitch Member

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    Although I agree with the great majority of what you have to say, it will take a Hell of a long time for memories of what happened not so long ago to dissipate. For some people they never will.
     
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  15. richards

    richards Part of the furniture

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    They want to find someone to do a job. Keeping a handful of WSR-bashers on this forum happy is not a priority and your suggested wording wouldn't have changed the quantity or quality of applicants.

    The self-importance and armchair-management skills of some forum members is incredible.
     
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  16. Bikermike

    Bikermike Well-Known Member

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    https://www.constructionenquirer.com/job-spy/
    Is a fairly well-known construction website with jobs. Don't see anything about why any of the vacancies have arisen.
    Construction is a mercenary industry. If there's a job, there's a job. we don't tend to do fluffy.

    If job ads were honest, it would be
    "Dave has gone off down the road for £5/hr more"
    "Dragos saw a chance to work for a contractor with a nicer cabin, nearer his house"
    "Because our area manager is psychopath (but related to the chairman so we can't sack him), we need a new groundworks team"

    In terms of building a level crossing, the WSR is just another job for just another company (and probably worse as it's full of well-meaning amateurs who do it for fun and expect everyone else to do the same, and no money to pay for anything), so I'd expect this if it's not full-time employed staff.
    If they come from the council, it's different if it is employed staff (not that many are these days, it's usually contracted out)
     
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  17. Monkey Magic

    Monkey Magic Part of the furniture

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    Physician arise and heal thyself.

    And actually more specific wording of the job advert and spec may well change the number of applicants.

    Good to know that there are a handful of WSR apologists, lackeys and sycophants (see how stupid name calling is in a discussion about a job advert) who will always leap to the defence of the PLC no matter what.

    I think that would work if for example Amey were advertising for their own site manager - it would follow the usual format from the industry. But this isn't an Amey advert this is a WSR advert for someone employed by the WSR. Council finance depts just want their paperwork so their backs are covered if the auditor or local press comes digging.
     
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  18. Bikermike

    Bikermike Well-Known Member

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    It's an advert for a contractor AIUI.
    Even it is an advert for the WSR, this isn't a heritage job. To the average Site manager, the WSR isn't special, it's just another job. In this context it's the same as Amey.
     
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  19. Downline

    Downline New Member

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    When I see comments like this, from people who seem to fail to grasp the idea that the WSR Plc can do things correctly, it makes me hate the internet that slight bit more. If your in the mindset that the WSR can do no right, and consider that another person who considers that the WSR may have actually done something right a apologist, lackey or similar, you seriously need to log out of National Preservation for a few days and adjust your mindset before returning.

    Oh how life was so much easier back in the day when internet trolls were not a thing...
     
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  20. Monkey Magic

    Monkey Magic Part of the furniture

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    I accept that but it is more that different sectors will write adverts for the same job differently.

    So here is the flipside - for example all the job adverts that you linked to give pretty detailed job requirements and key skills. Clearly industry norms for recruiting people. None of them say 'details on request' which is what the WSR advert says.

    So unlike normal construction adverts which give a really clear outline of:

    i) what the job is
    ii) key responsibilities
    iii) what key skills the applicant must have

    The WSR advert has none of that. The most specific information is: it is part time temporary, on a call down basis, intermittent to begin with, then becoming intensive later on in the project and liaising Amey. Which I'd suggest doesn't really tell anyone too much about the job at all. If you want to know more 'knock three times, say the magic word, hop of one leg and we'll tell you more.'

    Maybe you ought to do the same if you think anyone questioning the actions of the WSR PLC is a WSR basher.

    If people want to label those questioning as bashers then you can't start clutching your pearls when name calling comes back at those defending the PLC.
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2021
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