Engineer at Network Rail

What does an Engineer do?

As an engineer for Network Rail, who maintain the railway which operating companies run their trains on, you’ll ensure the railway is safe and well-maintained so that trains can run smoothly and on time. It’s a highly important role, as the trains need to be safe for the public and freight.

As an engineer, you’ll specialise in a particular technical area. For example, you could specialise in system design, overhead line engineering, or switches and crossings. It’s your job to make sure that everything within your speciality is maintained and meets all safety guidelines. If there is improvement work to be done, you’ll be responsible for implementing the plan in your specialist area, working with other engineers to make it happen.

As a railway engineer, you’ll be a focal point for best practice and technical advice, meaning that colleagues will come to you and seek your speciality knowledge and approval for various railway-engineering projects.

An important part of your role will be to provide support for incidents that occur, providing technical explanation on why they happened. This is a key part in keeping staff, passengers and freight safe when travelling on the railway.

As well as this, you’ll be responsible for carrying out risk assessments, seeing where improvements could be made to make the railway even safer, keeping colleagues, contractors and passengers in good hands.


Usually, you’ll work full-time, five days a week. However, you may be required to work later or over bank holidays, nights and weekends when maintenance of the railway takes place.

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