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News & Views from the RTBU NSW Locomotive Division

Finally, Railcorp addresses the big issue – grooming

Jul 12, 2012Hot Topic

Put those sunglasses away and get that stubble off your face – Railcorp has decided its time for employees to spruce up.

It appears that Railcorp has decided that the issues of overcrowding and staff moral should be put on the backburner while they concentrate on something far more important – grooming.

As part of its “first impressions count” policy, Railcorp has outlined dress and grooming standards all employees – well, almost all employees – must abide by.

From August 1st, staff must wear their Railcorp uniforms and be neat and tidy at all times. That means no piercings, no cardigans around the waist, no ‘grunge’ look, sleeves cuffed at all times, and if you’re thinking about growing a goatee, you’d better check with your manager first.

Those who don’t meet the outlined criteria will be “managed in accordance with the Performance and Conduct Improvement Procedure”. And don’t think you’ll be able to pull the wool over any eyes – managers will be checking your appearance when you sign in, and again at regular intervals throughout the shift.

It makes sense that the company has decided to spend its resources on this issue because as we all know, the thing that really upsets commuters on our rail services is not their train running late or having to change to get into the city, rather its the sight of workers with sunglasses on their heads and their sleeves rolled up. And the sight of a worker wearing a summer blouse after the first Sunday in May? My goodness, you’ve no idea the number of complaints head office gets about that.

Obviously, we jest. In all seriousness, the RTBU has no problem with staff needing to wear and maintain uniforms. We understand the importance of portraying a professional and consistent image. The concern however, is how it will be policed.

If they are going to enforce these dress standards, they need to enforce them across the board. They should probably also have a good think about what they’re going to do if too many staff need to be sent home to clean themselves up at one time.

We’ll be keeping a very careful eye on how it’s policed, and we certainly won’t be accepting a heavy-handed, inconsistent system.

The good news is that it already looks like there’s consistency across the whole workforce. If you think that frontline workers are copping the raw end of the deal here, you’re mistaken. Corporate and non-frontline staff must dress in a professional and business manner at all times too. Except on Fridays that is, when they get free rein on the attire front….mufty day.

What do you think about the ‘First Impressions Count’ policy?

Warning – if all this has got you a bit hot under the collar, then you’d best stand in front of a fan or get a glass of water. The rolling up of sleeves to stay cool is no longer accepted around this neck of the woods.

Click here to see the ‘First Impressions Count’ Q&A document

8 Comments to “Finally, Railcorp addresses the big issue – grooming”

  • If first impressions count, these standards should also supply to RailCorp trains – they should not leave the depot until all internal and external graffiti, dirt and rubbish has been removed. If RailCorp spent the money on cleaning staff instead of on standby crews to cover people who have a coffee stain in their shirt, I suspect they’d make a better first impression. The condition of the fleet is disgraceful.

    • I agree. The condition of the RailCorp maintained fleet is disgraceful. Much more attention should be paid to the cleanliness of the trains AS WELL as the staff (not just frontline). Unfortunately, Brendan, standby shifts are a necessity. No one wants a train to be left stranded by sick crew.

  • As long as all levels of management is required to dress up its not an issue I will be interested in dress standards at TCAC

  • And what’s more, Railcorp still cannot keep our meal rooms and toilets cleaned yet the Uniform nazis will be checking the colour of our socks! Now there is an idea. Lets all turn out with bright and different coloured socks and see whether the idiots will sign us on?

  • Really?? You have to be kidding… Glad im not with Railcorp anymore it really is a circus… They need to focus on the REAL issues but sadly that will never happen.

  • we will see how it plays out with one mans three day growth is anothers five o’clock shadow, one mans glasses on his head or anothers glasses in his pocket.
    The uniform police will want to ensure their grooming is 100% all the time as will their masters.
    Enforcing rules for some & not others is a form of bullying & i will not tolerate it in the slightest.

  • Can train crew be included in the mufti fridays as well? Why can one department have it while others can’t. Talk about double standards!!

  • its so refreshing to see rail corp focussing on the real in depth issues.Real shame they are unable to focus on the more import issues.How about clean grafitti free trains? and i dont think i will even mention clean staff facilities ?.

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