Transit Australia Group drives workforce development with award-winning training program

Queensland’s largest privately owned transport company Transit Australia Group (TAG) has been recognised for its industry-leading employee training program after taking out the ‘SEQ Large Employer of the Year’ award at the Queensland Training Awards.  

TAG last year invested $2.7 million into its People Excellence Program, an initiative introduced in 2015 to improve the performance of the organisation and encourage new and existing workers at all levels to develop a dynamic and successful career within the transport industry.

Following an extensive 18-month analysis of the organisation’s training needs, the program was holistically designed to lift the skills standards and create clear professional development pathways for TAG’s 1400 employees. It offers a mix of around 25 different internal and external training courses for every position from entry-level to senior management.

One outcome of the training overhaul was the introduction of the company’s nationally certified Driver Training Program. This industry-first initiative offers every new bus driver the chance to obtain a Certificate III in Driving Operations (Bus), with training delivered in-house by specialist staff ensuring consistent and high-level training standards and practical application.  

Senior management staff also receive advanced training in Six Sigma methodology. The data-driven approach equips staff with advanced tools and techniques to enhance service quality and ultimately boost customer satisfaction.

TAG has also partnered with The Universal Improvement Company (UIC) to train staff in root cause analysis and continuous improvement.

“Like many of the innovative transport organisations we work with across the world, TAG values the importance of advanced data analysis in operational performance and as a result has established a leading training program that provides staff with the knowledge and tools to continuously improve their product and service offering. We are delighted to partner with a company with such a distinguished history,” says Lisa Hosking from UIC. 

Transit Australia Group CEO Michael McGee said the holistic training program reflected the company’s commitment to continuous improvement, enhancing skills standards and creating a dynamic and engaged workforce.

“We have created a comprehensive training program that gives our workforce every reason to get excited about a long and successful career in the transport industry,” Mr McGee said.

“Every employee now has a clear pathway for professional development through a program offering specialist training and nationally recognised qualifications.

“Not only have we created strong workforce engagement, we’re also fostering a culture for continuous improvement with employees now equipped with new tools and techniques to better identify and tackle challenges and new opportunities.”

Assistant General Manager at Gold Coast bus company Surfside Buslines, Daniel O’Halloran, started his career in the transport industry seven years ago as a bus cleaner and refueller. Through the People Excellence Program, Daniel completed a Certificate III course to become a controller and then depot supervisor. He is now undertaking a Diploma of Leadership and Management.

The training program is also attracting more women and providing employment pathways for indigenous people.

“Our partnerships with various training organisations across Queensland offer people the opportunity to achieve fully subsidised qualifications as well as practical experience, increasing their employment prospects at the end of their courses,” Mr McGee said.

“We are proud of the role we’re playing in closing the employment gap for many sections of regional communities and developing a workforce that is both diverse and dynamic.”

“Our aim is to drive the industry in a new direction that will create a better customer experience for people utilising our services.”

The Queensland Training Awards will announce the state winner in Brisbane on Friday, September 9.

Barrett Gibson