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62 Employee Compensation Guidelines for Transit Providers in Rural and Small Urban Areas Positioning yourself as an EOC requires the following: Recruiting the right people, Hiring only the best applicants, Training staff to be successful, Continuing to develop staff, Providing a positive work environment, Compensating staff fairly, Recognizing staff worth, and Providing growth opportunities. This guide offers transit managers and administrators an outline of a comprehensive HR process, where each function is clearly defined, and which can be adjusted to accommodate indi- vidual transit system needs and resources. Although many rural and small urban transit systems do not have a fully staffed HR department, the responsibilities for the entire employment cycle must be carried out. The Employment Cycle The employment process has six main aspects: Benchmarking/Job Development--defining positions and determining how they fit into the organization, as well as the appropriate compensation. Recruiting--generating a pool of qualified applicants from which to select potential employees. Hiring--selecting the appropriate candidates from that pool of applicants. Training--providing the skills and information to new employees so that they can succeed in their jobs. Retention--securing the investment in qualified and trained employees through effective management practices. Evaluation/Feedback--determining the success of the previous process pieces through employee feedback and using this feedback to make adjustments in areas identified. When used appropriately, this completes the cycle. Each function is examined in more detail below. Although each function can be considered separately, interrelationships in the employment cycle demand that all functions be considered when developing a comprehensive HR strategy. The strategy developed will consider your tran- sit system's needs and abilities in each area, and, if managed appropriately, can dynamically address changes that affect the daily business of providing transit services. These components will continually revolve around each other and evolve simultaneously. The cyclic nature of the chosen strategy will create opportunities to make adjustments to the strategy based on its suc- cess and identified challenges, resulting in a dynamic and consistently improving human resources process. Job Development When considering your system's workforce needs, you need to determine which categories of employees are needed and the skills they need to possess. This means determining what is required before attempting to deal with how it can be addressed. One place to start this process is to explore whether you have problems attracting or filling particular positions and then con- sider the source of the problem. Do you get enough applicants? Do you get qualified applicants?

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Recruiting, Hiring, and Retaining Staff 63 Where do you lose people? What are you looking for? And, most important, have you defined the job so as to attract the most appropriate applicants for the position? Detailed Job Descriptions For example, suppose your transit system has problems attracting, hiring, and/or retaining drivers. Looking at the job functions of a driver, as "benchmarked" or described in Section 2 of this report, the job description includes the primary characteristics and skills of drivers under differing conditions (CDL versus non-CDL). To be effective in hiring the best drivers, you should create a picture from this benchmark (and others applicable for other positions) of what that driver is, including traits and behaviors needed of a successful candidate. The following sample job description lists duties required of Paratransit Drivers. JOB DESCRIPTION PARATRANSIT DRIVER KEY RESPONSIBILITIES & Conduct pre- and post-trip inspections to ensure proper operating ACCOUNTABILITIES condition of vehicle and on-board equipment. Successfully perform scheduled manifest by picking up all clients on time List the key responsibilities and delivering them to their destinations safely and within a reasonable and accountabilities time frame. necessary to fulfill this Ensure the safety of all passengers by use of appropriate on-board position's basic purpose. restraints. Ensure safe and clean vehicle conditions at the start and end of each shift. Communicate effectively with dispatch or central office personnel via two-way radio. Adjust to variables in normal working conditions, including adverse weather, traffic and construction, passenger problems, accidents, and trip changes. Provide customer service, including assistance in boarding and deboarding, supplying information, and responding appropriately in an emergency. Diffuse difficult situations and maintain order on board the vehicle. Document the course of the day thoroughly, including odometer readings, times, and passenger information. Accurately collect and reconcile cash fares collected from customers. Be a team player and helpful to staff, management, and peers. Employ all techniques of defensive driving to minimize the risk of preventable and non-preventable accidents and/or passenger injuries. Protect passengers and secure vehicle in the event of accident or injury and communicate effectively with dispatch and operations staff. Maintain a safe work area and a focus on safety to reduce the opportunity for injury to self or other employees. Ensure attendance according to local policy. Have a professional appearance and demeanor. This job description documents the functional aspects of the job and identifies some of the desired behaviors of persons in this position. An example for a transit system Director follows. Again, the job description includes more details on the responsibility of the position.

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64 Employee Compensation Guidelines for Transit Providers in Rural and Small Urban Areas JOB DESCRIPTION DIRECTOR KEY RESPONSIBILITIES Key Responsibilities & ACCOUNTABILITIES Plan, direct, coordinate, and evaluate the activities of transit system. List the key responsibilities Analyze and determine community transit needs; provide information, and accountabilities and develop alternatives. necessary to fulfill this Make recommendations regarding policy and service issues to the Transit position's basic purpose. Board; implement Board decisions. Ensure compliance with federal, state, and local laws and regulations. Develop and administer the transit system budget and Capital Improvement Plan; negotiate and secure funding from local contributing organizations. Recommend appropriate fare rates; prepare and administer grant-in-aid programs. Direct purchase of new equipment; ensure proper and efficient use of all funds in accordance with federal, state, and local regulations. Act as liaison to city, state, and community groups to promote the interests and objectives of the transit system. Act as liaison to special customer groups; represent transit system in professional organizations. Prepare Transportation Improvement Plan for MPO and participate in MPO studies. Administer FTA drug and alcohol testing program. Direct the selection, training, performance review, and discipline of transit system employees. Review of Qualifications/Requirements The next step is to define the minimum requirements or qualifications for the job. Mandatory qualifications, such as driving record, citizenship status, background/criminal record, and drug screening requirements, should be clearly defined. If persons must be available for particular hours or days of the week, including this information in the job definition will help in deter- mining how best to recruit. Operational considerations include full-time versus part-time, days of week, time of day, language needs, and physical abilities. Clearly stated qualifications should be incorporated in the job description and also in the training program, where applicable. The following table illustrates the minimum job requirements for paratransit drivers. JOB REQUIREMENTS PARATRANSIT DRIVER JOB REQUIREMENTS Education: High School Diploma or equivalent List required minimum Experience: Previous professional driving experience preferred but not education, years of required. Previous customer service experience, experience working with experience, and specific persons with disabilities, and/or senior citizen groups preferred, but not job-related knowledge, required. Safe driving record and clean criminal history. skills and abilities required Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities: to perform the job. Ability to read, write, and speak English clearly. Ability to navigate the service area through the use of maps and/or on- board directional equipment. Ability to communicate effectively with passengers, passenger represen- tatives, and system staff. Ability to remain calm in emergency situations and ensure the safety of all passengers and employees. Knowledge of service area.