Careers

Senior Transport Planner - CIHT Member

Is a career in transport planning right for me?

Want to influence the way people move around? Can you manage your time well and efficiently? Want to work in a varied industry where you’ll work with a variety of different people and on a range of projects?

If that sounds like you, then a career in transport planning could be the answer.

Perks and challenges of being a Senior Transport Planner

Perks:

  • Your work will include a wide variety of activities, from analysing statistics to presenting changes and improvements to the public.
  • You’ll get the chance to mentor and help less experienced members of staff, which can be a fulfilling part of your role.
  • You’ll get to meet and work with all kinds of interesting people as part of your job, including architects, structural engineers, town planners and community groups.

Challenges:

  • Sticking to tight industry guidelines, budget and time frames can be a challenge, but one you’re ready and willing to rise to.

Useful skills

The following skills are very useful:

  • Time and project management – Managing your time effectively will help you deliver projects on time.
  • Teamwork – you’ll be working with all kinds of organisations, both private and public, so working in a team will be an essential part of your job.
  • Negotiating – in order to come up with an efficient project plan with a number of different parties, you’ll use your negotiating skills so that a solution can be reached.

People who work in this role say that the following skills and qualities are useful:

  • Written and oral communication – a large part of your job will be writing reports and presenting project plans, so these skills will come in useful in your role.
  • Confidence – when presenting to groups of people like clients or local residents, it’s important to be confident in your project plans so that people have trust in your decisions.
  • Analytical - you’ll be working with data and statistics, so being able to join the dots and draw conclusions from different kinds of data with is a very useful skill to have.

What qualifications do you need to be a Senior Transport Planner?

There are a few different entry routes into this career. For example, you can take the graduate route by completing a degree or earn while you learn with an apprenticeship, for which you’ll usually need at least five GCSEs or their equivalents including English and Mathematics with good passing grades. Transport planning includes many different aspects of STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) subjects, so it’s useful to study these at school to prove to future employers that you have an interest in this area.

Transport for London offer a transport and town planning apprenticeship, so you can look out for that if you are considering the apprenticeship route. For their transport and town planning apprenticeship you’ll need five good GCSEs or their equivalents including maths and English along with science, ICT and any other two subjects.

There are specialised transport-related Master’s degrees, but even if you take the university route, there’s more than one way into a graduate role in transport planner. You could successfully apply for a graduate role with a degree in geography, for example.

DID YOU KNOW? Geography plays an important role in this career, so it’s a good subject to consider studying as well as STEM subjects.

What is the workplace of a Senior Transport Planner like?

You’ll mainly be working in an office, and the transport planning work you do could be in either the private or public sector.

Back to top