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How to Address the Marine Skills Shortage

  • by: Maxime Robert
  • On: 12, Nov 2018
3 min read

The Marine industry is rapidly growing, with new Marine jobs opened up all the time. However, there aren’t enough skilled Marine engineers to keep up with this growth, leading to a prediction of a Marine skills shortage of over 300,000 seafarers by 2050.

What’s more, global demand for engineers is getting more competitive all the time. The Marine industry must encourage more young people to get into engineering to ensure enough skilled Marine workers for the near and long-term future. Here are our predictions for global Marine growth and how the industry can capitalise on them to address the Marine skills shortage.

3 Predictions for Marine Growth:


1. Shipping Will Remain Strong Despite Political and Economic Uncertainty

The UK Marine industry has enjoyed six consecutive years of growth, and while Brexit could undermine the wider community’s belief in the UK as a maritime powerhouse, the sector is moving to secure new trade routes and nurture new relationships. This is emblematic of the Marine sector as a whole: a rich and dynamic network of trade and commerce, able to adapt and overcome any difficulty.

2. New Composites and Smarter Materials Will Increase Marine Efficiency

Revolutionary new materials are making ships lighter, faster and better, directly increasing profits. New Marine technology is being developed all the time, from greener fuel to more comprehensive and reliable communications systems. With fleets aging and Marine systems becoming ever more antiquated and obsolete, new ships will have to match the rising industry standard.

3. There Will Be an Increase in Import/Export as Global Growth Continues

Many countries are importing more thanks to higher GDP and an expanding range of choice. Faster shipping aids this process, directly making it easier for people to use those same services. Maintaining smooth trade and giving the public the greatest variety of choice for the lowest waiting time is vital to Marine sector growth.


How the Marine Industry Can Attract New Talent & Solve the Marine Skills Shortage:

1. Maintain an Optimised Online Presence

The first way that businesses can address the Marine skills shortage is by optimising their online presence and appealing directly to younger audiences. The Marine industry is naturally suited to creating engaging content, with videos of boat shows, new designs and yacht races. Social media can be a powerful tool both for creating brand awareness and attracting young people into Marine.

A naturally aspirational field such as Marine already has connotations of being an exciting and luxurious industry – this can be utilised to its full extent online to get as many eyes on the industry as possible.

2. Focus on The Benefits

The Marine industry allows for high job satisfaction and high earnings, and offers the chance to work all over the world. Communicating this to wider audiences will raise awareness of the opportunities that are open to young engineers and encourage them to find out more about working in Marine. A truly global industry, 80% of the world merchant fleet is manned by multinational crews, making it the perfect place to start a career.

How Recruitment Can Help the Marine Industry:

As Marine grows, it will become harder and harder to match the needs of the industry, with engineers needed at every level from design to fuel consumption to data analysis. A Marine specialist recruitment company will be able to understand the nuances of the roles and will be best equipped to source and appraise potential candidates.

Establishing a network of potential candidates can take years; a Marine recruitment agency will already have hundreds of workers on file for contract and permanent placements and with whom they have established strong relationships.

As the Marine sector is so large, and by its very nature operates all around the world, having an international recruitment agency is of paramount importance. International Marine recruitment consultants can help you to get the very best engineers from all corners of the globe.

International recruitment companies will also understand all employment and immigration laws, as well as ensuring compliance with GDPR and other industry standards.

Read more about how to get more young people into engineering, or see what VHR can do for your business.

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