Canadian National Railway

Canadian National Railway Employee Reviews in Canada

Found 116 reviews matching the search
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working out doors in all types of weather
Group 2 Machine Operator (Current Employee) –  CanadaApril 18, 2016
Fast paced working environment. Usually working with tight deadlines due to lack of track time. Management and co-workers are great to work for and with. Most of the time working in very isolated locations across Canada though mostly thoughout Ontario. Being away from home is the hardest part of working for CNR. The pay and benefits along with the physically demanding aspect of the job are definate pros. for me.
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Terrible Management but great company otherwise
HEAVY EQUIPMENT OPERATOR (Former Employee) –  Mackenzie, BCApril 8, 2016
The benefits were alright, the pay was great, and the people I worked with were awesome. Management, however, was not. The supervisors would literally hide in bushes or on a nearby hill with binoculars or fly in helicopters to catch their employees doing things wrong. It was ridiculous to see the lengths they'd go to strike the fear of being fired into people even though it was laughably easy to stay on with the Union.
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Amazing time and taking care of
Contractor at CN Rail. Operator of a skid steer (Former Employee) –  Winnipeg, MBMarch 17, 2016
Cleared snow in a industrail railway system. Learned to work with multiple teams. Learned how to be safe working with heavy equipment and trains. When you worked long hours Foreman bought the workers food. Co-workers are great to work with. Everyone working together to get the job done. Hardest part is having to deal with break downs with equipment. The co-workers were the best!
Pros
People and Work
Cons
Long hours
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Great company to work for, very supportive management, great benefits.. Unfortunately, my department moved to Montrreal and I was unable to move with
Customer Service Rep/Accts Receivable (Former Employee) –  Toronto, ONApril 27, 2016
Great company to work for, very supportive management, great benefits. Unfortunately, my department moved to Montrreal and I was unable to move
Pros
Fun job, fast paced, very rewarding
Cons
Unionized, never knew when you could get "bumped".
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Run, run away!
Electrical Apprentice Edmonton, Alta (Former Employee) –  Edmonton, ABMarch 14, 2016
By far the most dysfunctional workplace I have ever been a part of. Also by far the most unhappy, depressing place (diesel shop edmonton) I have ever worked at. Upper, upper management is aware how bad things are but do nothing about it.

Unless you are desperate, I would not recommend working for CN. Better yet, talk to some present employees before you take any position with them.
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good work and stable job with the right amount of seniority.
Conductor (Current Employee) –  Capreol, ONJanuary 27, 2016
- Over all a day at work is somewhat challenging and rewarding when working in the yard and have deadlines to meet.
- Long hauls are a nice break from the daily grind but also come with some stressors.
- Preparations and communication amongst the crew is typically very well established.
- A wide range of experience can be found within terminals, which leads to new practices and knowledge.
- Most enjoyable part of this job is the time off between shifts.
Pros
good pay and time off
Cons
long hours and unpredicatble
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no work/life balance
Conductor (Current Employee) –  Toronto, ONMay 9, 2016
Been working as a conductor for cn rail for 2.5 years now and have been on call 24/7. they dont care about your personal life, if you dont answer your phone they move on they dont pay you and you go under investigation. company is poorly managed. but good pay, decent benifits and good people.
Pros
pay
Cons
on call 24/7, management is against you.
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Good job.
Conductor (Former Employee) –  Capreol, ONMay 27, 2016
Good all around job, job security wasn't the greatest. On call 24/7, no schedule, money was good. Management was good, seemed to show interest in work we were doing, co-workers all worked together with very little friction, hardest part of job would be the hours, most enjoyable is the end result.
Pros
Good benefits, salary, work
Cons
layoffs.
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hard job on personal life
Conductor (Former Employee) –  Edmonton, ABJanuary 13, 2016
getting called 2 hours before the start of your shift, never knowing when exactly you are going to be working next. Learned how to control a train and run the train from point a to b.

Management likes things done a certain way. always worried about getting the job done on time even if it may not be the safest or right way to do things.

co-workers were awesome to work with on a daily basis. always there to help you if you needed help.

hardest part is the late night shifts when you are not expecting to go to work and then you get called with little to no rest.
Pros
great pay and benefits
Cons
on call all the time hard to plan a life around work.
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A great place to earn a high salary, if you don't get laid off
Conductor (Former Employee) –  McLennan, ABMay 25, 2016
I enjoyed working for CN, although it was too short. I made the switch to CN from bar management as I was/am ready for a career to last the rest of my life. Unfortunately, even moving 2000km away from home couldn't guarantee my position with how low my seniority was.
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Professionalism begets professionalism
Conductor/Switchman (Former Employee) –  Winnipeg, MBApril 27, 2016
Very secure career with great benefits. Working hours vary but wages make up for it. Ability to transfer to different departments. EFAP program is a nice touch. Employees take their jobs very seriously.
Pros
Safe place to work
Cons
Inclement weather
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Get in quick or you'll be on off shifts forever!
Railcar Inspector (Current Employee) –  Vancouver, BCDecember 22, 2015
Hired at a good time, didn't see too many off shifts other than my apprenticeship.

Decent overtime and stat pay, except you're expected to work all the stats....benefits are not bad and pension seems good.

Work with some great guys,there are times when work is great and can actually be fun. Some bad blood around, and people just waiting to retire.

Some upper management just wants productivity and doesn't seem to care much about anyone under them.

No preventative maintenance done to our work trucks, they only see a shop once something breaks down, horrible road conditions which makes for quick break downs of vehicles.
Pros
Co workers, different positions to bid, the pay, fast paced
Cons
Work in all weather conditions, all the time, with no sick days. Shift work.
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CN RAIL = Just a pay cheque, no quality of life EVER
Various (Former Employee) –  Winnipeg, MBJanuary 4, 2016
Everyone talks about how great the pay is when working for this railway... however this company HAS to provide a good wage because otherwise nobody would want to work here. Ever.
Advice: STAY AWAY.

The main problem appears to be very bad/inexperienced management with front line Supervisors having zero experience. Since very few long-term employees want to accept a management position the company is reduced to hiring "off the street". This unfortunately amounts to bad decisions day in and day out with blame for errors or low productivity unfairly being directed to the unionized employees.

With over 30+ years of service with this company I can honestly say that my co-workers were great but the disappointing management has ruined a once great company.
Cons
Long hours, shift work your entire career, no family life. Ever.
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fun place to work. disconnect between management and employees
Train Conductor (Current Employee) –  Calgary, ABMay 22, 2016
I love the job, it's active, it's fun, you're always learning, you get to see a bunch of cool things. I would recommend this job to anyone but there's a huge disconnect between management and union employees.
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Tough work environment, decent pay
Conductor Trainee (Former Employee) –  Saskatoon, SKDecember 6, 2015
A tough work environment, decent pay for those that can hack it. Long unpredictable on call schedules, lots of out of town long hauls over nights. Rough outside at night in winter conditions no matter how many gloves you wear when riding on boxcars. Decent pay and benefits, management vs union attitude though.
Pros
Pay, benefits
Cons
Long hours, unpredictable shifts, outside winter work.
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Challenging and highly demanding
Assistant Track Supervisor (Current Employee) –  Toronto, ONNovember 25, 2015
Operating 24 hours a day, the railway doesn't allow for much work/life balance. Safety is critical, and there are severe consiquneces for mistakes. Engineering is extremely complex and critical to safe operating practices. Supervision of Unionized employees isn't difficult, however the rare disiciplinary action that may be required does add tension to an already stressful job. On the whole, the Unionized employees are among the finest and most professional in the industry. Safe, quick, and intelligent.

The best part of the job is in knowing that your inspections and ability to spot defects is preventing derailments, keeping people safe and you're saving lives.
Pros
Good salary and expenses. Company vehicle.
Cons
Long hours in all weather. Forced relocation.
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It's an interesting place to work and there is a lot of diversity with this job.
Conductor (Current Employee) –  Saskatoon, SKNovember 12, 2015
CN is for the most part a decent place to work, with all of its pros and cons. However, It would be good to implement some new ideas, maybe give CN a fresh outlook on things. I'd like to stay with CN till I retire but getting laid off all of the time is making that difficult. Not having enough income to survive due to company layoffs is very stressful.
I'd like a better way for employees to be able to look things up in cats or on eportal. When it comes to their current job or when it comes to finding a new one or for anything for that matter.
Pros
Paid schooling, room for growth, company shares, good pay
Cons
Long hours, high expectations and low reciprocity, difficult managers, absence of a good training program, unfair reprocutions for first time minor mistakes.
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CN Conductor
Conductor Trainee (Former Employee) –  Winnipeg, MBJanuary 15, 2016
You live to work.

Then you get laid off and you can't live.

Very true they spend $50k training you and then $100k trying to fire you.

Toxic Management. Continually steal money from workers and break agreements.
Pros
eventually good pay
Cons
everything but the pay
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A typical day at work
Trainmaster (Former Employee) –  Saskatoon, SKDecember 7, 2015
It was a career I enjoyed but the hours required to perform my job was taxing being up by 5 if you got to sleep at all preparing for multiple conference calls and preparing your days traffic and tasks. It was literally 24/7 but a very fulfilling career none the less.
Pros
Salary and benefits
Cons
Lifestyle
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Exciting and fast paced work environment
Environmental Coordinator (Former Employee) –  Edmonton, ABFebruary 3, 2016
A great place to work for someone who likes thinking outside the box and a fast paced environment. Compensation is appropriate for the amount of dedication required for all positions.
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Overall rating

3.3
Based on 152 reviews
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