WFH Profile: Ben Ellis

Remote working is certainly an interesting concept when operating within the rail industry. There is no doubt that the COVID-19 pandemic has caused rail staff to embrace this concept and reconsider the ways in which we collaborate. YRP have decided to put together a series of Working From Home (WFH) Profiles to share how our YRP members are adapting their processes to ensure that they deliver to their respective roles. Our first profile has been submitted by Ben Ellis.

Ben Ellis – Production Manager – Siemens Mobility, Manchester – North West Chair.

My role is not one that can work from home and I am classed as a key worker.

On our site we have put in an emergency roster enabling all staff that can work from home to do so, staggering the shifts so we don’t have any cross over and moved teams together onto either a permanent night shifts or day shifts to try and limit any spread of COVID-19 where possible. We have also opened temporary brew rooms to isolate Maintenance/Depot Drivers/Cleaners to lower cross contamination risks. Additional cleaners have been put across the depot sterilizing heavy contact surfaces (door handles, phones, keyboards etc) again to limit the spread of any virus on depot.

We have seen a small reduction in staff due to either themselves or family members being symptomatic. However, this has not affected our production so far.

TPE and Northern Trains (our customers) have significantly reduced daily diagrams so we are seeing a number of trains sat on depots or outstations. The benefit of such is providing opportunities to undertake maintenance work, but it does add complications when trying to plan our mileage and delivery workloads.

We now conduct the vast majority of our daily meetings online. This ensures we still operate as normal to communicate with the staff that are working from home.

For me, it’s great to still be able to come to work as it gives me some normality and distraction. It is very strange, even at 05:30 to see barely any traffic and when moving around Manchester seeing hardly anyone around!


If you’d like to share your WFH Profile, please contact