How Transit Agencies Can Standout In Today’s Job Market

By Chanel Nichols, Executive Recruiter

It’s no secret that transit agencies are universally experiencing a bus operator shortage, and many are experiencing hiring challenges in general. So how can these public agencies provide a stable work environment consistent with the current workforce and their needs? We have some thoughts for your consideration.

First, identify and be able to articulate what makes the agency, as an employer, appealing. What is the organization’s culture?

What about the culture would entice exceptional candidates to the team? What are the traditions, customs, and ideal values, that predominantly influence employees’ behaviors?

In today’s competitive hiring landscape, organizational culture can often make or break an agency’s ability to attract and retain high-quality candidates. Clarity around culture is essential. Is the organization regarded as innovative, fun, and team-oriented? Is the atmosphere supportive and collaborative? Is the organization known for hiring within, creating opportunities for individual growth, and delivering on the promise of work-life balance? Or does the organization have a reputation for being compartmentalized, task-oriented, and a place where people frequently leave due to burnout? Does leadership have the same perception of culture as the rest of the workforce?

A candid organizational assessment will provide insight into workplace culture. A strategically executed cultural transformation program could go a long way to improve an agency’s culture and employee retention and recruiting efforts.

Second, some salary constraints could put a damper on the hiring process within the public sector. As a result, public transit agencies need to look at their overall compensation makeup and compare that data with the current market forecast.

Take the competitive salary for a Human Resources Manager. Across industries, salaries range from $107,000 to $170,000, with the transit industry being at the bottom tier. To be more competitive, public transit agencies must factor in their total compensation package and consider if a salary range of $100,000 to 120,000 will attract the caliber of HR Manager talent truly desired. Are there other benefits that could provide a competitive edge? Transit agencies must consider these and other essential questions before posting a job if they want to attract and keep stellar candidates.

When it’s time for you to conduct an organizational assessment, introduce cultural transformation, or develop a recruitment plan, we can help. Contact me at 

HR Manager Annual Salary Table

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