In an effort to restore service to pre-pandemic levels, VTA is recruiting bus operators to help fill around 90 vacancies. A new training class begins December 27, and applications are available.
Hiring and training were suspended during 2020 due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
VTA started hiring and training again in January 2021, but by that time, we were short 108 bus operators due to normal job turnover, retirements, and promotions.
Echoing the same trend happening across the region and the entire transit industry, the number of applicants applying to become a VTA bus operator has dropped off in the last few months.
In addition, the job of a bus operator traditionally has a high turnover for various reasons: the stress of navigating a 50-ton bus through traffic, a public-facing job is not always easy, and often times bus operator is an entry-level position, so employees move into other, better-paying jobs.
You may notice advertisements on buses and trains, television and radio ads, social media posts, and digital ads on websites in our effort to reach new audiences, publicize well-paying trade careers at VTA, and meet new candidates that could join the VTA family.
Bus operators at VTA go through a paid 9-week training course to learn how to drive various size buses, from the 40-foot coaches to the 60-footers, also called articulated busses. Experienced trainers teach candidates everything they need to know about the job.
We trained 119 new bus operators throughout 2021 but, we need more candidates for the next class.
We accelerated our training schedule, putting classes back-to-back and increasing the maximum class sizes.
Growth Opportunities At VTA
VTA encourages employees to move up in the agency to higher-level jobs that pay better and require more responsibility. Some bus operators move to become light rail operators, management analysts, or to higher positions thanks to our management/labor collaborative apprenticeship program "Joint Workforce Investment."
New operators are matched with mentors to help them build their careers at VTA. This past year, 30 bus operators moved into higher-paying jobs within our agency – one of the reasons we have a shortage of operators.
Diversity On The Job
VTA strives to employ a workforce that represents the diversity of our community. After a Board directive to recruit more women into non-traditional jobs at VTA, we are focusing on encouraging women to apply for jobs like bus operator and others. Our Board recognizes the need for women, especially women of color, to get good-paying jobs with secure benefits.
Pay And Benefits
As members of the Amalgamated Transit Union, VTA operators have access to strong benefits, including health coverage, paid holidays, and education reimbursement on top of a very good annual salary.
- Applicants must be eighteen (18) years of age at the time of application.
- Training and experience equivalent to a high school diploma and have a valid California Class C driver's license.
- May not have more than three (3) moving violations within the last three (3) years.
- Must have a good attendance record at school and/or previous job.
- Must be available to work weekends, holidays, and odd and unusual hours.
For a complete list of required qualifications visit:
How To Apply
Fill out an application online.
For questions, call: (408) 321-5575
You can also check out our Twitter or Facebook pages this week to see testimonials from our operators about why they like working at VTA.
We recruit throughout the Bay Area and into the Sacramento, Stockton, and Modesto areas. Join the VTA Family!