I'm reviewing this on my own personal experience. Your mileage may vary. I only stayed there for a month, and I feel I really gave this place an honest chance. For the most part, the people were mostly friendly. There was one young woman there who had a definite attitude. I made the HUGE mistake on disagreeing with her on something trivial and she gave me the "Big Freeze" for the rest of the time there. It was almost laughable, but I let it go because by that time I didn't care about that stupid place and already knew I wasn't going to stay.
The bathrooms get overloaded with garbage and are filthy by the end of the day. The break room is cramped. The starting pay was only 12 dollars an hour, 13 if you can speak Spanish. Which to me was a bit unfair. It's not like I would pass a call to a Spanish speaking person. They have a translator option there, where everything goes through a translator on the phone.
You are not "allowed" to look at your cell phone, look at the internet, eat at your desk, though some did break the rules. Some of the people calling for rides (these are FREE state paid for rides for people with Medicaid coverage) were incredibly abusive.
If you want to work at a call center, there are MUCH better options. The health insurance isn't too bad, that was what I was mainly going to stick it out for, but as the timed neared where I had to make a decision, I knew I just couldn't do this job.
I'm not the only one. There are so many people flying out o
Good Pay/Bennies but A lot to be Desired/Favoritism/Fraternization/Unfairness/Bad Mngmnt
Former Driver, This location (Woodbridge, VA) was practically fine about 6 years ago, however with new "management" & unfair practices, rampant unfairness, Union weak (regardless of numbers of members) - sides with Management, little or no backbone), Union contract weak in favor of needs of business/Mgmnt, moral & work conditions have gone steeply downhill. Don't listen to employees concerns/don't care. This included about on-job practices, bus & work conditions, route issues, weather & unsafe driving (even Metro closed for bad weather), during "snow" events less than normal ridership/gov't closed but they penalized us if you didn't drive on icy, dangerous poorly pre-treated roads Certain Managers/Supervisors/Dispatchers have unfair and unhealthy work ethics - i.e. outright lying on employees to upper Management - who unfortunately believe whatever comes to them . Speak & treat employees in negative, rude manners in front of other employees, as to embarrass and degrade certain employees they don't care for. While at the same time verbally & physically in view (emlpoyee lounge, etc.) favor & "buddy-up" to, practice the "Good Ol Boy/Girl" system - even though a soc-called "Incentive Program" is in place. Most Dispatchers are rude (especially over the radio) as well as certain Supervisors who are placed from the ranks of employees, but have no Management training as far as how to treat employees. Do not follow First Transit Workplace Policies and Procedures themselves.
ProsGreat pay, overtime & Benefits, great passengers, some co-workers, acceptable on-site Maintenance & break-down/road assistance.
ConsBad workplace moral due to poor & unfair Management, poor administrative, Dispatch & HR sections, poor Union assistance (regardless of membership numbers or status), constantly being under a "Microscope" - unless you are a favorite.
Loved driving the bus and meeting new people all the time. Typical day check in with dispatch get bus number assignment. Collect transfer slips, check detour list. Go out to my assigned bus and do safety check. This included checking all tires for tread wear, ensure that the lug nuts were secure. Check the engine for damaged belts, start the bus check the brakes by testing emergency brake. Test the wheelchair lift for any defects and in working condition. Check all doors and windows for cracks. Check all mirrors ensure they are in good condition, adjust mirrors for my needs to drive. Ensure that the fire extinguisher is valid and full. Check the secure straps for the wheelchair area. Check the bike rack for any defects, and verify that all lights and flashers are in working order and not cracked or broken.
I learned a lot that goes into getting your bus ready and safe before departing the garage. Learned how to be a defensive driver and to always look 15-20 seconds ahead to determine any traffic issues.
Management is very good and understanding. I had to leave unfortunately because i had severe illness that was not diagnosed correctly and i had to miss a lot of work. I had to resign due to that issue. Diagnosis has been resolved and I am at 100% healthy and ready to go full speed to get my career started.
My co-workers were awesome all very friendly and loving.
The hardest part of the job was the fact that 80-90% of the shifts available are all spli
Prossalary was good
Consno breaks on route, drive to and from garage twice a day due to split shifts, benefits were too expensive to handle based on pay
Decent pay, respects work/life balance, very stressful at times
This is regarding the First Transit East Metro Mobility job.
Decent starting pay for the job with yearly raises for 5 years. Good amount of paid vacation to be earned as well as PTO. Benefits are decent for full time. Variety of schedules to fit what you may need. Calling in sick when needed is not an issue and they are good about giving you requested days off if done in advance. Paid holidays. Overtime almost always available if wanted. They are allowed to keep you an hour past your end time per the union contract which sometimes they do but are usually pretty good about letting you off at the correct time, or fairly close to.
My main issue with the job is how stressful it can be at times. Unfortunately, there seems to be a high turnover for drivers. This leads to a constant shortage of drivers which means we all have to pick up the slack. Most days aren't too terrible, but the bad days are really bad. We simply have more clients than we have the ability to pick up in a timely manner. This makes for late rides and upset clients being a regular thing. The routing department makes some very nonsensical routes sometimes. The reservations department frequently schedules with incorrect addresses and/or incorrect pick up or drop off comments. The GPS systems we use are nearly 20 years old and haven't had software updated in a long time. New developments aren't even in the system and the GPS constantly brings you to the wrong place. We pick up a lot of the same people so eventu
ProsGood pay, holidays, flexible schedule
ConsOutdated gps, poor routing/reservations, shortage of drivers
I am a current employee who absolutely loved this job until it burnt me out, which isn't unusual in the driving profession. Still, I like my job, and it's a great fit for me. We have a GREAT barn of hardworking men and women, who genuinely care about, and look out for one another. The job itself consists of driving fixed route City Busses and Paratransit vehicles throughout greater Nashua, and the surrounding communities. We belong to the Teamsters Union Local 633 out of Manchester NH, and you MUST be willing to join the Union if considering employment at First Transit. The pay is $20 an hour to start, and works its way to $24.50 over the course of 4 years. The benefits are pretty standard for the industry, with all the offerings, including the ability to choose between Company and Union Medical. Time off is VERY generous IMO, especially for just walking in the door. You don't have to wait a year for time off. It's prorated right out of the gate! I have been here for 2 years but driven professionally for a long time for many different organizations, and can honestly say that this is the perfect fit for me. It does have its moments, much like any other job in this profession, but you could do a whole lot worse. My only real complaint is that we are ALWAYS short staffed,, which again,, is not unusual for the profession sadly. This can often put strain on individuals to do more. Some love the extra work,, some do not, though extra work is "rarely" forced, bu
ProsGREAT crew and camaraderie, generous time off for new employees, a real chance to advance within the company beyond driving.
ConsALWAYS being asked for more, Job comes with inherent risk, though not like the big cities.
If you want to settle in life with no opportunity for growth, this job is for you.
You’re just a number in their system. Wake up very early and go to sleep very late, that’s what you can expect working at Rochester Public Transit/First Transit in Rochester. Poorly maintained buses and NO CLEANING CREW! Literally they have no employees hired to clean/sanitize buses. You drive primarily Mayo Clinic workers around all day, touching everything in the bus and the buses never ever get cleaned besides washing the outside to give the look of cleanliness. Their statement is “if you can’t do it safe, don’t do it” yet they give you no time to properly pre-trip the bus or run routes safely. You constantly run late on routes, and then get 1-2 minutes to turn around and start your next route. Sometimes you get 5 minutes between routes. But you’ll be running late anyways, so even with 5 minutes between you’ll be lucky if you start on time. You constantly hear of drivers calling in on the radio, leaving their routes 7-15 minutes late from the posted start time. If you want to be stuck in your driver seat for hours on end and likely your entire route sheet. No time for bathroom breaks or breaks to even get up and walk around for a couple minutes to stretch. If that’s what you’re looking for then work for first Transit in Rochester, that’s what you’ll get. They wonder why they are short so many drivers and there are constantly drivers leaving every month. This is why. I would easily say half of the drivers who started in the last 6 months have left already. T
ConsNo breaks at all, back to back routes, poor maintained buses.
I worked for this company for a few days at best at their Capitol Heights, MD location. As a former business owner I felt I needed to write a review for people that might seek out this gig. The office staff was extremely unorganized. Make sure to double check that they have everything (paper work) and have you assigned to the right locations for physicals, drug test prints, training etc. For the little time I was there I learned that it is always best to ASK TWICE. I wasted gas money a few times during my hiring process due to their mix ups. Other than that this is an excellent job to get your foot in the door with MWATA/METRO in the DC area. Just understand that working for First Transit is no easy ride. The turn over is high for a reason. You have a lot of RULES to learn and follow... And you will be watched non stop while on the road. So don't dig in your nose in the van, lol.
And if your using public transportation you might want to reconsider applying for this gig. The first three weeks of training requires you to be at the facility at 4:00 am sharp for three days and then around 7:00 am during the remainder of the week. Also be prepared to work long hours (10 plus hours per day). One thing you will need to know is that your so called "end of shift" can and will be extended at anytime. So don't think you will get off at your "scheduled time" every day. If you can handle their process their is plenty of hours available to work.
Far as the pay goes, they start you
The co-workers were really fun to work with, my supervisor was alright also as long as she was in a good mood.
I would go in about between 6 A.M. or 8 A.M. and start work as soon as I would get logged in to my computer and my phone. About 1 to 3 hours later I would take my first break and then about 2 to 3 1/2 hours later I would take my lunch and usually I would have to eat my lunch in between calls which I didn't care about. Then about 1 hr 15 min to 3 hrs 45 mins. I would be taking my last break for the day.
I learned how to be a better customer service representative (unless I made mistakes which I tried not too, but we are all human) and I also learned to be more patient with the clients especially the ones that have a speech impairment.
The management was alright at times. My supervisor always called me her PC (problem child) because I was always giving her problems all the time. But all the management really liked me and they want me to come back to work with them but it all depends on Met Council.
My co-workers were so awesome. They helped me through a lot especially when I had to have my kids go to live with their aunt and uncle on my ex's side of the family. They were always concerned about me when I was so quiet because of something going on in my personal life and they would eventually get me to talk about it because they really liked me a lot.
The hardest part of this job was to make sure the clients had the correct address or the address at all when they called into book their rides, because if they don't have the complete address we cannot book the ride un
ProsThe general manager would buy us lunch quite a bit.
ConsA co-worker calling sick when they really aren't sick.
I wish I could say working at FT was a dream, but it being a unionized position meant that there was a separation of office employees and outdoors employees which caused a LOT of back and forth between all employees. (Drivers complaining to bus cleaners that something wasn’t done, trash wasn’t taken out by drivers, etc) There is a huge communication barrier between the union of the office and the union of the outdoor positions, we were told that complaints would need to be delegated to our own manager (there are TOO MANY managers), and half the time, even if our manager was able to let our complaints be heard to the GM, they would be overlooked for the benefit of...I guess the GM. I don’t know. I was laid off of my position on November 1 of 2020 along with 50-60 others (only given a week and a half notice), and I have been floundering trying to find another job since then. General manager is simply too focused on fiscal responsibility and not focused enough on the good of their employees.
ON THE MANAGEMENT: management seem very cliquey in the way that they would speak with each other. I understand having the need for privacy but GM’s door seemed to be shut a lot, and before we were told to go to our higher-up manager on our side of the union, or if I had another problem that needed direct attention from the GM, the door was almost always closed. I was also told that bereavement was not something given to newer employees and one of my newer coworkers had told me they were tem
ProsThe work is physically demanding, which is a pro to me, plus insurance, pay was decent enough
To start, instructors will humiliate or anger you at one point or another. They show favoritism & they are not nice, they can make you feel very incompetent. The female "road supervisors" & dispatchers have attitudes & make you feel inferior. THEY TALK TO YOU LIKE YOU ARE A CHILD, THEY ARE VERY UNPROFESSIONAL & THEY TAKE PLEASURE IN SEEING SOMEONE FAIL - AND, THEY CANT WAIT TO WRITE UP SOMEBODY. They are DEFINITELY 2-faced, do not trust them. Dont trust management. Dont trust anybody there, regardless of how much they tell you "we are here for you" - they do not have your back. The policies will cause you to lose your job. They say people lose their jobs bcz they "break policies" but the truth is there are too many policies - the policies go against human nature - I.E., You dont get breaks at all - if you have to use the bathroom, may god bless you. In the elmwood park nj location, there's a fat stone faced whale who sits in the back - he is an eyesore - he's a "manager" - stay clear of him - he is trouble & always looks for reasons to say you did something wrong. Everytime I turned around here he comes waddling towards me to confront me about "something". It was like him, those road supervisors, dispatchers & a couple of management heads were waiting for me to fail & took pleasure if I made a mistake. Its like they didn't like me or something - see, favoritism. If they "praise" you do not trust - they are still snakes. They watch every move you make & can hear absolutely
Questions And Answers about First Transit
What is the best part of working at First Transit?
Asked Oct 4, 2019
Answered Jun 29, 2022
Clocking out. Ending my day.
Answered Jun 29, 2022
How are the working hours at First Transit?
Asked Jul 24, 2016
10 without lunch.. you gotta be a robot to work at the Newark location
Answered Jan 17, 2020
It depends on the location you are at. Yes the hrs do suck. But you can get over time. Starting day is at 530am until 1130pm but that’s in North Dakota..
Answered Sep 23, 2019
What is the work environment and culture like at First Transit?
Asked Jun 29, 2016
I worked at the location in Tulsa, OK. Do not work there! Its great at first, then it switches. Everyone gossips about each other. It's basically like working in a soap opera. Unless you are family or great friends with a current employee or manager, dont expect to stay there for long. Whatever you do, do not get injured on the job.
The old buses 18 and down always have issues. Some that cause you to switch to a new bus 3 or 4 times. Which if you work the Lift program, will cause you to run late. When they say "If you cant do it safely, dont do it" thats a lie.
The turn over for this location is high. A lot of people quit or get fired for insane reasons.
The hours are terrible. Don't expect to get 40 hours a week. They bid on routes. Seniority gets first choice, then family. It doesnt matter how long you've been there. Dont expect bonus safety pay. Hazard pay was a joke, they made it a bonus check and taxed it. The managers at this location are CROOKED. Especially Scott and Gaysha. The Union rep doesnt really care unless you are friend or family. Their point system is ridiculous.
Do not sign up for overtime hours for the weekend unless you can absolutely follow through. No matter if family or medical emergency. You will get a write up. If you file a report against another employee, they will tell them who did it and what the report says.
If they offer a sign on bonus or a referral bonus, dont expect to get it. And they will be clueless as to what you are talking about.
Just dont work here. No one wants to be there, but can't afford to quit.
Answered Jul 4, 2020
Plum PA dispatchers talks down to all employees over the radio. Constant yelling battles in the offices between drivers and others.
Complete lack of communication between the office people towards each other and the fellow drivers. Many calls off/walk off/or just simply quits. This location doesn't know how to run a buisness.
Answered Mar 3, 2020
What benefits does First Transit offer?
Asked Jul 23, 2016
No retirement plan and the union sucks!!!!!
Answered Jun 29, 2019
Not much, you have to go through the Union
Answered Dec 3, 2018
How is training?
Asked Nov 11, 2016
They harass train you and throw you into a shift
Answered Aug 1, 2019
In Newark NJ it's okay, but if you want your Cdl-b deal with it, and keep it moving