Staff members employed by ScotRail: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

Information requested

The number of staff members employed by ScotRail, with a breakdown by financial year from 2016-17 onward.


The information you have requested is contained in the table below.To note the December dates are a point in time and do not reflect the period by period movement.

  Dec-16 Dec-17 Dec-18 Dec-19 Dec-20 Dec-21
  Heads FTE Heads FTE Heads FTE Heads FTE Heads FTE Heads FTE
Total 4929 4772 4842 4680 5001 4848.5 5304 5128.5 5248 5061.5 5137 4945

Worth noting that the period of growth from the start of the franchise until the pandemic – reductions after that caused by:

  • Inability to recruit and train due to Covid restrictions – all resourcing activity for front line roles effectively ceased during the first lockdown. This included a back log of trainee drivers due to Covid related restrictions – the forecast attrition materialised, and ScotRail was unable to recruit and train backfill to forecast plan so net decrease in heads overall.
  • Could not recruit in 2020 for roles like apprentices, which require close proximity working (Engineering as an example or where colleges could not deliver practical learning). This was delayed until late summer 2021.
  • Delivering considerably fewer services in response to demand during the pandemic, which subsequently required less resources, for example, no need to backfill during that time in certain posts, with customer numbers significantly down, reduced resourcing levels required to service front line.

About FOI

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Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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