Go-Ahead celebrates 20% increase in women bus drivers in UK

Posted: 8 March 2023 | | No comments yet

In recognition of International Women’s Day 2023, Go-Ahead reports a 20% increase in women drivers across its 15,600-strong UK workforce, with plans to continue diversifying its team.

Go-Ahead celebrates 20% increase in women bus drivers in UK

Credit: Go-Ahead

The Go-Ahead Group has announced that the number of women drivers at its UK-wide network of bus companies has risen by 20% in 2022, following a wide range of efforts to attract more applicants.

Go-Ahead’s bus companies have seen a significant increase in applications for driving jobs from women, following efforts to address the traditionally male dominated image of the industry.

Overall, female representation among the company’s 11,000 workforce of drivers has risen from 10% to 12% in 2022, a year in which the industry had experienced a chronic shortage of labour, with bus driver vacancies at a high level.

Currently, Go-Ahead employs 15,600 people in the UK bus industry. The group runs a quarter of the capital’s services on behalf of Transport for London (TfL). Go-Ahead owns eight regional bus companies outside of London – including operations in Devon, Cornwall, Hampshire, Dorset, Brighton and Hove, Oxford, East Anglia, Manchester, East Yorkshire, as well as Tyne and Wear.

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Efforts to hire more women bus drivers have included:

  • Female-focused advertising, including a campaign called “we’re hiring people like you” by Go North West in Manchester and a “heroes of the road” campaign at East Yorkshire Buses
  • A programme to build the foundations of culture change across the group which focuses on growing inclusion as a way we do things
  • A bus driver apprenticeship scheme pioneered at Go-Ahead London
  • Salaries of £26,000 to £40,000 per year depending on region and experience.

Claire Mahoney, Head of Colleague Experience at The Go-Ahead Group, said: “Driving a bus is a valuable and rewarding role, providing a vital everyday service up and down Britain. We want our workforce to reflect the communities we serve, which means a better balance of men and women behind the wheel. I’m pleased that we’re getting more women on board – we’re moving in the right direction but there’s much further to go yet.”

In addition, to mark International Womens’ Day 2023, Go-Ahead has released a video focusing on ‘women returners’ who have come back to the workforce after maternity leave, examining their experience as they re-adapt to working in an office or depot.