APTA Reports

Creating Sustainable Human Capital Investment: A Final Report of the 2012 APTA Workforce Development Task Force

American Public Transportation Association, September 2012

Gary Thomas, APTA Chair 2011-2012, established a special task force charged to address any recent developments or changes in the industry that would shift the focus of the association’s workforce development strategy as outlined in APTA’s 2010-2014 Strategic Plan. The special task force was led by then APTA Vice Chair, Flora Castillo. Members of the task force represented a diverse cross section of executives, senior leaders, key stakeholders and next generation leaders from both the public and private sectors of our industry. The final recommendations were presented to the APTA Board of Directors when they met in conjunction with the 2012 APTA Annual Meeting in Seattle, WA.

American Public Transportation Association, May 2010.

Dr. Beverly A. Scott, APTA Chair 2008-2009, established a blue ribbon panel on workforce development, representing the public and private sectors of the industry, key stakeholders and partners, including labor, academia, and the next generation of leaders in APTA. The final recommendations of the panel were presented in May 2010.

Skill Development and Training Needs R​eport (Members Only)

American Public Transportation Association, July 2010.

In 2009, APTA conducted a survey of its members to learn more about the need for workforce skill-building in the public transportation industry. The accompanying report, published in July 2010, will give APTA, its member organizations, and the industry useful data to better plan, identify and address workforce development needs

Transit Careers: Cool Green Jobs and a Whole Lot More​  ​

APTA’s Human Resources Committee, now formally known as the Workforce Development Committee, and the Marketing and Communications Committees joined forces to produce a YouTube video that speaks to the next generation workforce.

Industry Reports

Knowledge Management Resource to Support Strategic Development for Transit Agencies

TRB’s Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP), 2017

TRB’s Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP) Research Report 194:Knowledge Management Resource to Support Strategic Workforce Development for Transit Agencies explores the importance of knowledge management (KM), which is an organization’s process for collecting, storing, and sharing organizational information and knowledge, and provides guidance on implementing KM strategies in transit agencies. In addition, the guidance includes action plans for developing particular aspects of KM, analysis of KM strategies at several transit agencies, and a catalog of KM technology tools and resources.

Public Transportation Occupational Guidebook

​Sponsored by the Federal Transit Administration in Cooperation with the National Transit Institute, 2012​

This report has been designed as a broad overview of the occupations and areas of work within Public Transportation, in order to form the foundation for an ongoing discussion of the nature and content of work within this industry. It is intended to reach an audience including but not limited to public transit agency managers, human resource professionals, researchers, leaders of industry organizations, and policy experts interested in Public Transportation workforce issues.

Working Together: A Systems Approach for Transit Training

Transportation Learning Center, 2008

This report outlines how transit training partnerships between labor and management are the most effective way for the transit industry to address its skill challenges. The consensus training guidelines in the report were developed by transit systems and local unions working together.

Engaging, Recognizing and Developing the MTA Workforce

Metropolitan Transportation Authority, November 2007.

Based on interviews, data analyses, field visits, and their own expertise, MTA’s Blue Ribbon Panel developed recommendations that provide diverse approaches to strengthen and enhance the MTA workforce and its relationships with customers and external stakeholders.

Leadership: The Next Generation

Leadership APTA Class of 2007, October 2007.

As thousands of workers from the “Baby Boomer” generation near retirement, public transportation systems face a critical shortage of skilled and seasoned employees. This report describes the characteristics of workers in each generation, and outlines strategies for attracting Generation X and Y to jobs and careers in public transportation. ​

Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP) Materials

Building a Sustainable Workforce in the Public Transportation Industry-A Systems Approach

Transit Cooperative Research Program, Report 162, 2013.

This report acts as a guidebook to address contemporary issues in workforce development, retention, and attraction, and public transportation image management. The guidebook provides practical tools to transit agencies on a variety of workforce issues, including workforce strategies that enhance organizational processes,performance metrics to evaluate the impact of workforce strategies, image management techniques that improve perceptions of the public transportation industry, and benchmarking processes that allow for continuous organizational improvement.

The list below includes publications and current projects of the Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP) on the topic of workforce development.

(Project F-05)
Closing the Knowledge Gap for Transit Maintenance Employees: A Systems Approach, 1998
(Project F-09)
Managing Transit’s Workforce in the New Millennium, 2002
R-84 Volume 3
(Project J-09)
e-Transit: Electronic Business Strategies for Public Transportation, Volume 3: Using the Internet for Transit Training and Certification, 2003
(Project F-11)
Public Transportation Operating Agencies as Employers of Choice (with CRP-CD-45), 2004
(Project J-6)
Racial and Gender Diversity in State DOTs and Transit Agencies (joint report with NCHRP Report 585), 2007
(Project F-12)
Employee Compensation Guidelines for Transit Providers in Rural and Small Urban Areas, 2008
Research Results Digest
(Project F-03)
Total Quality Management in Public Transportation, 1994
(Project J-6)
Identification of the Critical Workforce Development Issues in the Transit Industry, 2001
(Project J-03C)
International Transit Studies Program: Innovative Practices in Transit Workforce Development, 2008
(Project SF-02)
Incentive Programs to Improve Transit Employee Performance, 1994
(Project SF-06)
Practices in Assuring Employee Availability, 1999
(Project J-7)
A Challenged Employment System: Hiring, Training, Performance Evaluation, and Retention of Bus Operators, 2001
(Project J-7/SF-08)
Diversity Training Initiatives, 2003
(Project J-7)
Corporate Culture as the Driver of Transit Leadership Practices, 2003
(Project J-7)
Transit Operator Health and Wellness Programs, 2004
(Project J-7)
Paratransit Managers’ Skills, Qualifications, and Needs, 2007
(Project F-11)
Public Transportation Operating Agencies as Employers of Choice: Toolkit
TCRP Projects Underway
E-6 Transit Bus Mechanics: Building for Success—The ASE Transit Bus Maintenance Certification Test Series
E-7 Initiating a National Transit Industry Rail Vehicle technician Certification Program: Building for Success
E-8 Extending and Deepening National Transit Training Programs
F-13 Vehicle Operator Recruitment, Retention and Performance in ADA Complementary Paratransit Services
F-14 Addressing Critical Shortfalls: Recruitment, Development, and Retention of High-Quality Managers for Public Transportation Systems
F-15 A Practical Guide for Recruiting Minorities for Chief Executive Officers at Public Transportation Agencies
J-6/Task 72 Developing a Professional Certification and Credentialing Program for the Transit Industry
Other TRB Publications
TRB Special Report 275 The Transportation Workforce Challenge: Recruiting, Training, and Retaining Qualified Workers for Transportation and Transit Agencies
TRB Special Report 284 Transportation Knowledge Networks: A Management Strategy for the 21st Century

Archive of Older Materials

Workforce Development Initiative (WDI) Task Force

American Public Transportation Association, September 2003.

APTA established this task force in 2001 to address the current and future workforce needs for the industry. The final report and recommendations of the task force were approved in September 2003, including “mainstreaming” workforce development into APTA’s programs, activities and committees. The report remains a vital resource for the industry.

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