04.07.2022 15:27

DB Rail Academy qualifies Managers of Road and Transport Authority (RTA), Dubai, with customized Certified Rail Professional Program

student holding graduation cap

The provision of an advanced transport network and high-quality infrastructure facilities for the people of Dubai as well as the implementation of a long-term development plan for Emiratis are key objectives of the Government of Dubai and thus of the Road and Transport Authority (RTA) Dubai.

For RTA, as the entity responsible for transportation in Dubai, it is of particular importance that employees develop the necessary competencies and apply the most modern tools and processes to achieve the strategic goals and key performance indicators of the Ministry of Transportation and thus a high level of satisfaction of the population of Dubai.

For this reason, RTA commissioned DB Rail Academy, part of the DB E.C.O Group of Deutsche Bahn AG, to conduct a comprehensive needs analysis for further training and develop a customized professionalization program for middle management of the RTA’s Rail Agency.

Concept and Implementation of the Certified Rail Professional Program

The Certified Rail Professional Program is based on the training needs analysis, which was conducted in 2017 and is specifically tailored for RTA. The program was continued in 2018, 2019 and finalized in December 2021. The consultant’s team, consisting of highly qualified employees of DB Rail Academy and experts from the DB Group, developed and implemented a comprehensive and structured training concept for RTA.

The program consists of a series of theoretical classes on the concepts included in each module of the training plan combined with a real application project and a final certification. The overarching goal of the qualification program is to empower the future leaders from RTA with the skills necessary to perform the work specified in the plan efficiently and safely.

The program is designed to provide RTA's middle management and experts with a specifically identified technical understanding of railroad engineering and operations. Combined with methodological knowledge, practical insights and first-hand experience, the skills learned are practice-relevant and directly applicable. The understanding of the technical system is complemented by relevant management competencies.

First group of managers successfully complete the “DB Rail Professional Program”

Once RTA had identified candidates for the program, a class was assembled to undergo the customized further education program to become a "DB certified Rail Professional". This specific program is certified by one of the world's leading mobility groups as well as by the DAAKS-accredited testing company TÜV.

Thus, from 2017 to 2021, training modules were carried out covering the topics of Rail Operations, Fundamentals of Rolling Stock, Maintenance of Rolling Stock and Infrastructure, Rail Infrastructure, Signaling, Electrical Engineering, Safety and Risk Management, Incident Investigation, Quality and Audit, and Rail Project Management (see figure 1). In advance, the module "Strategic Thinking in a VUCA world" was conducted to provide the overarching competencies to meet the challenges of digitalization.

The learning content of the modules of the Rail Professional Program was assessed with DCTS points (Deutsche Bahn Credit Transfer System). The Certification Process is depicted in figure 2. After the candidates had reached 1,000 DCTS points, a refresher course was held on all modules and the candidates were able to present themselves for the examination. The examination included a written test, a project paper and an oral test in front of a jury of experts from DB and TÜV. Where the necessary number of points was achieved according to the TÜV-approved examination regulations, certification was granted.


Figure 1: Modules of the Rail Professional Program (Source: DB Rail Academy)
Figure 1: Modules of the Rail Professional Program (Source: DB Rail Academy)

Figure 2: Certification Process of the Rail Professional Program (Source: DB Rail Academy)

Figure 2: Certification Process of the Rail Professional Program (Source: DB Rail Academy)


DB Rail Academy secured measurable, sustainable outcomes for RTA

To ensure learning success at a leading level, each module of the training program was enriched with modern pedagogical tools; a continuous performance review was carried out to measure learning success; and a transfer to the workplace was ensured through application. The theory lessons were supplemented by practical elements in the depot at the vehicle or by other practical insights.

To determine the overall success of the training program the actual results achieved and how these results impact the organization were focused on. The ROI of this program is measurable because a substantial component of the program is to apply the knowledge and skills gained from each module in a project work, that is directly of benefit to reaching RTA’s business targets. The project works concluded in a cost benefit analysis for a long-term improvement for RTA. This is the so-called training success measurement.

After successful completion of all the modules, participants worked in groups on final projects assigned by RTA management to deliver real and tangible benefits to the business. These project works were facilitated by a DB Expert and a supervisor from RTA. A direct ROI for RTA was that the project implementation clearly improved the capabilities of its employees.

This is supported by His Excellency Mattar Al Tayer, Director-General, Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), who recently honored the graduates of this program.

Several graduates of the Certified Rail Professional Program also reflected on their gain through the newly acquired knowledge and skills (to view the video visit our LinkedIn page).