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Mugsy

Questions about Station Agent position & the MTA

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I actually got called for SA AFC after having taken the exam in June 2008. I'm scheduled to report for the pre-interview & medical exam this Friday. I honestly thought the MTA was phasing out the SA position, and I'm genuinely surprised to have been called after all this time.

 

With that in mind, is there any future as a Station Agent? The whole point of going to work for the MTA (or any public sector job) is to have a little job security. If I'm only going to be declared a "redundancy" in one or two years, I won't bother.

 

Also, what does the "pre-interview" entail? The name suggests an interview before the actual interview. The late George Carlin would've had a field day with that particular piece of euphemistic whimsy.

 

Lastly, I've been working for the HHC for the past three years as a Hospital Care Investigator (civil service position). The incumbent rate (which I'm currently earning) is between $40-41k per year. The problem with this position is that there are few opportunities for advancement. Sadly, the HHC is not a meritocracy. Most of the Senior HCI & Supervisor positions tend to go to the most sycophantic & duplicitous individuals in the office.  I’m not a very effective butt-kisser, and I’m no rat; hence, no viable future as an HCI.

 

How is the culture in the MTA? Is it any better?  Are there opportunities for advancement? A sense (no matter how vague) of camaraderie, or is it the same back-biting viper’s pit that the HHC is?

 

Thanks in advance for any responses.

 

P.S. I haven't posted here in ages. Nice to see that this forum is still up & running.

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I actually got called for SA AFC after having taken the exam in June 2008. I'm scheduled to report for the pre-interview & medical exam this Friday. I honestly thought the MTA was phasing out the SA position, and I'm genuinely surprised to have been called after all this time.

 

With that in mind, is there any future as a Station Agent? The whole point of going to work for the MTA (or any public sector job) is to have a little job security. If I'm only going to be declared a "redundancy" in one or two years, I won't bother.

 

Also, what does the "pre-interview" entail? The name suggests an interview before the actual interview. The late George Carlin would've had a field day with that particular piece of euphemistic whimsy.

 

Lastly, I've been working for the HHC for the past three years as a Hospital Care Investigator (civil service position). The incumbent rate (which I'm currently earning) is between $40-41k per year. The problem with this po

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

sition is that there are few opportunities for advancement. Sadly, the HHC is not a meritocracy. Most of the Senior HCI & Supervisor positions tend to go to the most sycophantic & duplicitous individuals in the office.  I’m not a very effective butt-kisser, and I’m no rat; hence, no viable future as an HCI.

 

How is the culture in the MTA? Is it any better?  Are there opportunities for advancement? A sense (no matter how vague) of camaraderie, or is it the same back-biting viper’s pit that the HHC is?

 

Thanks in advance for any responses.

 

P.S. I haven't posted here in ages. Nice to see that this forum is still

 

up & running.

 

The position of station agent will never be phased out . The mta cannot have unmanned booths

Cameras serve their purpose but that cannot replace a human presence . I think you will have job security and the pay is very good for this position

And there is built in overtime also so if you want more money and room for advancement go for it .

The culture in the mta is a different story . You also have to love people to be successful in this title dealing with the public can be

Difficult at times . Also the mta loves to nitpick and make your job more stressful than necessary

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I believe when he said phased out, he means they drastically cut a lot of station booth agent positions as there are many station booths not even used.  For example around Canal Street there was a booth on Broadway where that booth is no longer there.

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I believe when he said phased out, he means they drastically cut a lot of station booth agent positions as there are many station booths not even used.  For example around Canal Street there was a booth on Broadway where that booth is no longer there.
I believe when he said phased out, he means they drastically cut a lot of station booth agent positions as there are many station booths not even used.  For example around Canal Street there was a booth on Broadway where that booth is no longer there.

 

The only reason there were layoffs in stations was because of revenge by the mta

The union wouldn't back down from the 3% pay rise that the mta didn't want to pay so as payback they Initiated those layoffs

I don't think there will be any more layoffs in the mta . I think that was the last time we will see layoffs in this lifetime

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Don't worry MTA by law has to have a Human presence on the station 24/7. They tried the customer service kiosk program which failed because people took advantage of the freedoms of being able to roam the station and not be locked in the booth for 8 hours. That's was supposed to be the future of the station agents job. I was told this when I was hired in 2006. My advice take the job and take as many promo exams as possible. The job is not an easy one and will have you stressed and mentally tired some days, and you may become jaded towards some types of passengers. But the pay and benefits are great. And it's one if the best titles to get your foot in the door to many promo opportunities. Top pay is $27.505 plus $1.2292 night differential from 6pm-6am, plus a paid 15 minute early report to relieve to agents in the booth. So that's an extra 2.5 hours OT each check. Average pay is $64,000 without OT once you reach top pay. Starting pay I think is $20/hr, you also get 4 weeks vacation after three years. Don't quote me on that because I've seen TA employment adds now saying five years to reach top pay, when it was three years when I started. And usually reaching top pay and four weeks vacation time coincided. Either way take the job and try and move up as quickly and as far as possible. And like I said if there's no agents then lots of other jobs will be cut too, so don't worry about the job being eliminated, it may be changed or broadbanded in the future however. Congratulations and good luck in Station Agent School. Don't worry about picking up everything 100% in class, because people will know you're new and be more than willing to help you out with questions and procedures.

Edited by WillBx718
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I actually got called for SA AFC after having taken the exam in June 2008. I'm scheduled to report for the pre-interview & medical exam this Friday. I honestly thought the MTA was phasing out the SA position, and I'm genuinely surprised to have been called after all this time.

 

With that in mind, is there any future as a Station Agent? The whole point of going to work for the MTA (or any public sector job) is to have a little job security. If I'm only going to be declared a "redundancy" in one or two years, I won't bother.

 

Also, what does the "pre-interview" entail? The name suggests an interview before the actual interview. The late George Carlin would've had a field day with that particular piece of euphemistic whimsy.

 

Lastly, I've been working for the HHC for the past three years as a Hospital Care Investigator (civil service position). The incumbent rate (which I'm currently earning) is between $40-41k per year. The problem with this position is that there are few opportunities for advancement. Sadly, the HHC is not a meritocracy. Most of the Senior HCI & Supervisor positions tend to go to the most sycophantic & duplicitous individuals in the office.  I’m not a very effective butt-kisser, and I’m no rat; hence, no viable future as an HCI.

 

How is the culture in the MTA? Is it any better?  Are there opportunities for advancement? A sense (no matter how vague) of camaraderie, or is it the same back-biting viper’s pit that the HHC is?

 

Thanks in advance for any responses.

 

P.S. I haven't posted here in ages. Nice to see that this forum is still up & running.

 

 

 

Starting pay will be about what you're making now and topping out at 64K. If you have a pension under NYCERS you can carry that time over to TA. So that makes you even safer if they ever did layoffs again because whatever time you had at HHC would be like working for TA that long. Many people with less seniority than me but prior civil service time at Traffic or school safety or whatever didn't get laid off if they had five or more years previous civil service time or a combined time of five years at TA and their previous civil service job. That time also helps you when it comes time to retire under TA's 25/55 pension plan. And if you were already under a tier 4 pension plan at HHC, you don't have to be worried about being shafted by that tier 6 bull shit either. Even under the new tier 6 pension TWU local 100 retained a 25/55 retirement plan for its members, the only local statewide to pull that off. If you decide to take the job and have any questions during class or the hiring process feel free to inbox me your questions and concerns.

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Oh and to answer the rest of your question, there is no interview in the sense where they'll ask you why should we hire you and expect you to sell yourself. This process just consist of bringing in all documents they request and passing the urinalysis exam, and finger print background check. There are no medical guidelines established for the S/A title, so you don't need to past a medical screening. As long as all your paperwork is straight and you pass the urinalysis exam and background check you'll be sworn in on your final processing date and be given a class date, and have your photo taken for you pass. Probation is one year from your first day in class.

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The position of station agent will never be phased out . The mta cannot have unmanned booths Cameras serve their purpose but that cannot replace a human presence . I think you will have job security and the pay is very good for this position And there is built in overtime also so if you want more money and room for advancement go for it . The culture in the mta is a different story . You also have to love people to be successful in this title dealing with the public can be Difficult at times . Also the mta loves to nitpick and make your job more stressful than necessary

 

Well, I wouldn't say that I "love" people, but I've been called every name in the book (both in and out of bed) at least ten times over the years & have a pretty thick skin. Hopefully, that'll get me through on those days where all of my customer interactions seem to have a gypsy curse on them. :)

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I believe when he said phased out, he means they drastically cut a lot of station booth agent positions as there are many station booths not even used.  For example around Canal Street there was a booth on Broadway where that booth is no longer there.

 

Yes, that was exactly what I was alluding to. It seemed that I couldn't pick up a newspaper in 2010 without reading something about pending SA layoffs. I remember feeling lucky that the MTA hadn't called me yet. Hopefully, what primomjr78 wrote is true and we wont see anything like that again in our lifetime.

Edited by Mugsy

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Don't worry MTA by law has to have a Human presence on the station 24/7. They tried the customer service kiosk program which failed because people took advantage of the freedoms of being able to roam the station and not be locked in the booth for 8 hours. That's was supposed to be the future of the station agents job. I was told this when I was hired in 2006. My advice take the job and take as many promo exams as possible. The job is not an easy one and will have you stressed and mentally tired some days, and you may become jaded towards some types of passengers. But the pay and benefits are great. And it's one if the best titles to get your foot in the door to many promo opportunities. Top pay is $27.505 plus $1.2292 night differential from 6pm-6am, plus a paid 15 minute early report to relieve to agents in the booth. So that's an extra 2.5 hours OT each check. Average pay is $64,000 without OT once you reach top pay. Starting pay I think is $20/hr, you also get 4 weeks vacation after three years. Don't quote me on that because I've seen TA employment adds now saying five years to reach top pay, when it was three years when I started. And usually reaching top pay and four weeks vacation time coincided. Either way take the job and try and move up as quickly and as far as possible. And like I said if there's no agents then lots of other jobs will be cut too, so don't worry about the job being eliminated, it may be changed or broadbanded in the future however. Congratulations and good luck in Station Agent School. Don't worry about picking up everything 100% in class, because people will know you're new and be more than willing to help you out with questions and procedures.

 

Willbx718,

 

First off, let me thank you for the comprehensive answers, and for the (hopefully not premature) congratulations.

.

I think it's cool that the MTA takes the time to at least attempt & train new employees thoroughly with a 30 day course. If I had to guess, I would imagine that great deal of class time must deal with staying alert for scams, counterfeit bills, and learning how to cope with difficult/belligerent customers. I'll try & stay alert.

Edited by Mugsy

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Starting pay will be about what you're making now and topping out at 64K. If you have a pension under NYCERS you can carry that time over to TA. So that makes you even safer if they ever did layoffs again because whatever time you had at HHC would be like working for TA that long. Many people with less seniority than me but prior civil service time at Traffic or school safety or whatever didn't get laid off if they had five or more years previous civil service time or a combined time of five years at TA and their previous civil service job. That time also helps you when it comes time to retire under TA's 25/55 pension plan. And if you were already under a tier 4 pension plan at HHC, you don't have to be worried about being shafted by that tier 6 bull shit either. Even under the new tier 6 pension TWU local 100 retained a 25/55 retirement plan for its members, the only local statewide to pull that off. If you decide to take the job and have any questions during class or the hiring process feel free to inbox me your questions and concerns.

 

 

Thanks for the info on this. I was actually worried that my three years would be entirely wiped out transferring to the MTA, I know the time I have in is transferrable to the HRA, but I wasn't too sure about the MTA. I have three years invested in the TDA (The HHC's retirement fund), and was hoping that it would be transferrable. I'm also relieved that I won't be tier 6. B-)

 

Thanks again for all the great info & insights!

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Thanks for the info on this. I was actually worried that my three years would be entirely wiped out transferring to the MTA, I know the time I have in is transferrable to the HRA, but I wasn't too sure about the MTA. I have three years invested in the TDA (The HHC's retirement fund), and was hoping that it would be transferrable. I'm also relieved that I won't be tier 6. B-)

 

Thanks again for all the great info & insights!

 

 

Yeah they try and cover everything in the 30 day, class but you won't pick up everything in that short period of time. They mostly focus on you teaching you the paperwork and the AFC ( Automated Fare Collection) system and terminology. And how to use the TBT ( Token Booth Terminal). They don't focus too much on customer service because you're supposed to have at least 2 years experience already, so they expect you to know how to resolve situations on your own. But they will go over the proper procedures for a few days. I can't remember everything they went over in class, but I can tell you major things to expect. The first two weeks will be focused on teaching you how to fill out all the paper work and learning all the equipment in the booth and the station. At the end of the two weeks on a Friday you'll be assigned a booth to work as an observer of an agent. They guy I observed let me work the TBT for a few hours, and fill out some of the paper work. Also during those first two weeks you'll be going to the Coney Island yard for fire school training, where you'll learn how to put out fires and evacuate a train. The next two weeks focus on full AFC and TBT training. At this point your class will be broken in half One segment of the class will train at 207th St yard, and the other half at PS 248. During your last week you must do 2 booth take overs, and work it with another agent training you. You will now be responsible for all  of the money and any situations that may happen on your stations. After the 2 days you'll be expected to bring all your paperwork back with you to class, to verify by your instructor. Then you have your two final exams. One covering the paperwork, and the next one covers everything. Now that I recall the class is pretty extensive, so pay attention and be on time everyday. After all you're at work and on probation. Like I mentioned before if everything pans out for you, if you ever have any questions while in class don't hesitate to ask me in a PM.

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Hi. I has been hired as a station agent. I knew it is going to have two tests on the last day training. I worried about the tests.Can anybody tell me any information about that? If I fail  the tests, what is going to happen?

Thank you!

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Well sorry for the late reply. I'm sure they'd just give you a refresher course to pass the exams. But honestly they aren't very hard to pass at all. You've Bern doing everything they're testing for, for 30 days. So the failure rate is very very low. I'm sure by this time you're already on the road by the time I posted this reply.

 

Sent Using my HTC One Maxx On Tapatalk

 

 

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Any idea if they are going to keep giving more SA exams after this and when the next one is likely to be?

Sorry for the super late response. Only time will tell. They havent given an exam in 6 years since 2008, and they're still hiring from that list which just opened up in 2012. The job will change drastically over the next 5-7 years, but I don't beleive it can or will ever be phased out. The union an the MTA are in talks about the future of the title as we speak. I feel the job will just go back to the customer service booths they tried out from 2005-2010. When I got hired back in 2006 they were telling us then that, that was going to be the future of the job anyway. The job will become alot more physical by then, so lots of old timers will retire because of it. And they'll be able to cut posistions through attrition because of it.

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Sorry for the super late response. Only time will tell. They havent given an exam in 6 years since 2008, and they're still hiring from that list which just opened up in 2012. The job will change drastically over the next 5-7 years, but I don't beleive it can or will ever be phased out. The union an the MTA are in talks about the future of the title as we speak. I feel the job will just go back to the customer service booths they tried out from 2005-2010. When I got hired back in 2006 they were telling us then that, that was going to be the future of the job anyway. The job will become alot more physical by then, so lots of old timers will retire because of it. And they'll be able to cut posistions through attrition because of it.

 Thanks for the response. That is good news it sounds like there's a chance that test will become available next year with the others to be open for filing at least (based on timing). I have a friend who really wants to get in at that position that's been asking me about this.

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