NIS expansion puts it on track to support rail recruitment push

Davie Carns (left) at the official opening of the new Rail Training Center

National Infrastructure Solutions, launched by former young international footballer and Royal Marine Commando Davie Carns in 2018, seeks to help hundreds of local workers retrain and upskill to take advantage of a unique opportunity for the West Midlands.

The company, which already works with huge industry employers such as Rhomberg Sersa and Amey Rail on industry-specific courses, is also lead partner for the City of Wolverhampton College’s new rail training center on its Wellington Road campus in Bilston.

The facility is equipped with installation and maintenance equipment to support classes on conventional, high-speed and light rail lines.

It is also the first in the UK to offer training on slab track systems used in the construction of high speed rail lines, such as HS2, directly adjacent to conventional railway track for training purposes.

This demonstrates NIS and CoWC’s commitment to creating both opportunity and choice for learners as they take their first steps into the rail industry.

“Our area has a major employment opportunity with billions of pounds being invested in rail infrastructure projects planned or passing through our area,” said Davie, who first started working in the sector as a tracker, often working weekends and nights while undertaking military relocation.

“Brexit is restricting the flow of European workers which means we are desperate to train people so they can enter the sector and, just as importantly, to upskill those who are already in the industry. into more advanced roles to create sustainable careers for all. ”

He continued: “What we have been doing over the past two years is listening to employers to develop a series of on-site and virtual courses that will equip individuals with basic practical railway skills and qualifications covering leadership and management, health and safety and behavior. qualifications.

“Our partnership with the City of Wolverhampton College is also important and the facilities we have there are unrivaled in the UK. It gives us the opportunity to train people in a safe environment on the kind of equipment and technology they will be working on once they get to the trackside.

Demand for NIS’ services has increased 300% in the past 12 months and the company has responded by tripling its full-time workforce, recruiting local talent representative of the city it calls home.

So far, it has trained 300 people, of which 70% of participants have found sustainable employment.

Courses are available both for newcomers to the industry who want to learn the skills employers are looking for and for those already working in the rail industry who want to upgrade their skills and deepen their knowledge.

The NIS will also run free railroad training courses for those registered as unemployed under an industry labor academy program. The six-week program will provide pre-employment training, on-site work experience and a guaranteed job interview with an industry employer looking to recruit new employees.

“With my background, it’s no surprise that one of our great passions is helping former members of the Armed Forces retrain for careers in railroading and that’s something we’re looking to grow. with the launch of our ‘Back on Track’ program shortly,” Davie added.

“Our management team have agreed to donate 2.5% of our profits to local charities and we want to continue to work with fantastic organizations such as Reach and Unite to ensure that anyone who wants a career in the rail industry has the opportunity to learn the skills they need to have a chance in the sector.