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  • Job hunting but getting nowhere

    Hi all,

    I have recently, well I say recently. 3 months have passed now since passing my orals, but I have only really started to apply for my 1st position in the last month. I've stopped counting the number of applications, CV's, registrations I have completed/sent now. I seem to be getting nowhere and get more and more frustrated with it all as each day goes on. (Filling in all certificates valid from, expiry dates, passport number, visa, COC, over and over again has become a bit tedious)

    I have had my CV checked by various people who work in the industry, initially i thought my CV was not up to scratch but they have all said the CV is fine.

    I've tried directly applying to companies speculatively or for advertised vacancies, Registering with recruitment agencies but to no avail. I am not being fussy a job is a job. I've applied for everything from tankers, cruise ships, offshore, Containers and Wind farm boats. Out of all my endless applications I've had two replies saying unfortunately they do not have any suitable vacancies. The recruitment agencies are saying they don't have any positions and that its quiet on the job market at the moment.

    (The majority of vacancies insist previous experience in rank but 12 months sea time as cadet doesn't seem to count)

    I am lost and wondering if I will ever find a job or if there is something I can do to boost my employability.

  • #2
    The Jubilee Sailing Trust are looking for volunteer 3rd officers, it's not a paid job but it'd at least get you a stamp in your discharge book.

    My advice is always the same - it's not what you know its who you know, get back in touch with people you sailed with as a cadet, they may know of unadvertised jobs, they may be willing to recommend you to a friend.... it's a catch 22 situation - you can't get experience without a job and you can't get a job without experience. (No your cadet sea time does not count).

    Most of all, keep trying, maybe your CV does need a re-jig, it may be "fine" but does it stand out? Give it a facelift and resend it to everyone- can't hurt can it?

    Best of luck, and keep us updated

    Size4riggerboots

    Moderator
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    • #3
      Cheers for the reply

      Yeah I will try volunteering because as you say it's a stamp which says you have experience in rank.

      I'm not sure about the Officers I sailed with being able to assist me although they did write glowing testimonials in my training book. Without trying to be rude I worked with officers which were not from the western world and their practices were lets say not exactly what would be considered safe or the right way and my sponsor company doesn't exactly have the best reputation in the industry.

      Comment


      • #4
        It's a tricky one - and I agree with S4 - I got my current job by knowing someone, and I have recruited five people into the company who I worked with previously. This is the way it works unfortunately.

        Get on linked in and connect with people, build a professional network, e-mail colleagues from college and ask them. Don't rely filling out forms, wherever possible speak to people and try and make an impression.

        A couple of years ago I applied for a job and was really miffed when I did not get it, I got hold the number of the recruitment guy and called him up (as it happens, I knew him vaguely) and asked him why, and he did not even know that I had applied for it. Lots of those online things end up in the trash...

        Get on JST - you will meet people in the industry who can help you get a paid job in the future.

        Send your CV to Hatchorder on this forum - he is the real expert on that matter.
        Cruise ship Captain with experience on-board Passenger Vessels ranging from 5500-150000 GRT.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by HolyNougat View Post

          A couple of years ago I applied for a job and was really miffed when I did not get it, I got hold the number of the recruitment guy and called him up (as it happens, I knew him vaguely) and asked him why, and he did not even know that I had applied for it. Lots of those online things end up in the trash...

          .
          Absolutely, you almost always have to follow up applications with a phone call, possibly even a few phone calls. Keep records (or store e-mails) of you get replies from and who you talk to. It's always good to have first names and direct e-mail addresses of people in the recruitment agencies and shipping companies. Even after you get the first job, you never know when you might be knocking at the door of the agencies/shipping companies again for another job.
          Also, make yourself available for temp work and be ready to fly at any moment, if you make it very clear that you are available to fly within 24 hours then you become even more employable. I once applied for a job, never received a reply, but suddenly had a set of joining instructions and flight details arrive from 'Seattle' for a 4th Officer position (no prizes for guessing which company and agency) for flights leaving within 2 hours from Heathrow... (They did change me onto the next flight a few hours later, was a mad dash to the airport)

          Comment


          • #6
            I keep hearing of this happening to recently qualified guys, it's very sad to hear. What is worse is the fact that the colleges are lying to new cadets saying there is a massive shortage of officers which is completely out of order. This wouldn't be a problem if people knew the truth from the beginning.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by chrisclapperford View Post
              I keep hearing of this happening to recently qualified guys, it's very sad to hear. What is worse is the fact that the colleges are lying to new cadets saying there is a massive shortage of officers which is completely out of order. This wouldn't be a problem if people knew the truth from the beginning.
              Anyone who is thinking about going to sea, or wanting to start a cadetship I would personally tell them not to, its not worth the time and effort, with the very little opportunities at the end. And I think it is only getting worse, another big container company have recently laid off all their british officers. I am thinking about packing the career in altogether and going back to university or training to get into something else, as its not worth sitting around anymore waiting on the next call.

              As you said, the colleges but also the unions are to blame for the lies they tell cadets.

              Comment


              • #8
                I agree with you Belfaster. It's a sinking industry for Brits.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I also agree belfaster. The only thing that will change it is if the government starts to act. I am on a UK vessel, mainly sailing in UK waters owned by a UK company yet I'm the only Brit on board! How can they get away with this? You can call me a racist or whatever but I couldn't care less. The truth is companies want the cheapest guys possible and don't care about protecting British jobs. Yet the politicians who can do something about it, don't.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by chrisclapperford View Post
                    I also agree belfaster. The only thing that will change it is if the government starts to act. I am on a UK vessel, mainly sailing in UK waters owned by a UK company yet I'm the only Brit on board! How can they get away with this? You can call me a racist or whatever but I couldn't care less. The truth is companies want the cheapest guys possible and don't care about protecting British jobs. Yet the politicians who can do something about it, don't.
                    The Norwegians know how to run their maritime sector effectively, and im sure the companies flying Norwegian flags are making huge profits regardless of who they employ.
                    I believe the reason is, most of these british companies are floated on the stock market and run by shareholders who will squeeze as much money they can out of the company, meaning expensive but good crews have to go. Whereas most Norwegian companies are family owned or government owned, so as long as they return a profit each year they are happy.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      As for what is happening to container companies, unfortunately I believe it is going to take a massive accident involving loss of these new ships, death and oil spills for these companies to buckle up their ideas. A massive accident is inevitable, and the reason may have something to do with, a quarter of the cost South East Asian can go from being a messman to a 3rd officer in 3 years, as long as he saves up 2 thousand dollars and passes a multiple choice exam....

                      Although there are some great south east asian seafarers out there, make no mistake about it. On my last ship I was talking to an experienced filipino officer and he 100% agreed with me on the matter.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I think you are being too cynical, everyone I know who was in the phase ahead of me got jobs in the industry after qualifying last year and this year (deck and engine), working in various sectors such as containerships, cruise, offshore. In addition the grass is not always greener on the otherside - You mention Norway belfaster but I know for a fact one family owned Norweigan company who always employed Norweigan officers are now not doing so, instead opting for eastern Europeans.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          The shipping industry is a MUCH safer bet than almost any other one you care to mention:

                          Aviation
                          Any random degree
                          even medicine these days
                          Law

                          Sure some people struggle to get their foot in the door once qualified, but there is demand for experienced officers, even with only a few months experience, which is more than can be said for so many other professions.

                          And there is a shortage of qualified people, especially at a senior level - I was looking for a Chief Officer with a Masters Ticket, Ice Experience, Singe Watch-keeping and a passenger ship background - believe me, they don't exactly grow on trees.
                          Cruise ship Captain with experience on-board Passenger Vessels ranging from 5500-150000 GRT.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Neil87 View Post
                            Hi all,

                            I have recently, well I say recently. 3 months have passed now since passing my orals, but I have only really started to apply for my 1st position in the last month. I've stopped counting the number of applications, CV's, registrations I have completed/sent now. I seem to be getting nowhere and get more and more frustrated with it all as each day goes on. (Filling in all certificates valid from, expiry dates, passport number, visa, COC, over and over again has become a bit tedious)

                            I have had my CV checked by various people who work in the industry, initially i thought my CV was not up to scratch but they have all said the CV is fine.

                            I've tried directly applying to companies speculatively or for advertised vacancies, Registering with recruitment agencies but to no avail. I am not being fussy a job is a job. I've applied for everything from tankers, cruise ships, offshore, Containers and Wind farm boats. Out of all my endless applications I've had two replies saying unfortunately they do not have any suitable vacancies. The recruitment agencies are saying they don't have any positions and that its quiet on the job market at the moment.

                            (The majority of vacancies insist previous experience in rank but 12 months sea time as cadet doesn't seem to count)

                            I am lost and wondering if I will ever find a job or if there is something I can do to boost my employability.
                            Hi Neil,

                            There seem to be a few jobs advertised that may suit your situation:
                            http://www.genesis-marine.co.uk/vaca...All&sector=All
                            http://www.nuwavepersonnel.com/marin...ils&jobid=1306
                            http://www.clyderecruit.com/seagoing-jobs/view/-3/ (depends on how urgent it is that they have 3/O, bonus if you have RoRo time as a Cadet)
                            http://www.clyderecruit.com/seagoing...econd-officer/ (worth a try)
                            http://www.genesis-marine.co.uk/vaca...All&sector=All (see if they'll accept an EDH ticket - worth a try)
                            http://www.clyderecruit.com/seagoing...r-in-february/ (a possible way in)

                            http://www.mnrltd.com/vacancies.php (second down - Personnel Officer), it's a way in? Jobs been advertised a while now...

                            When calling companies directly and getting a negative response try to ask if they are aware of any other companies who are currently recruiting - make sure you get the name of a person in the other company. Most companies recruiting from the UK know each other quite well and may be aware of fleet developments. It's amazing what difference it makes asking for a specific person in the 'HR/Manning Dept' and saying I was given your number by John Smith at ABC Shipping. As an introduction it certainly differentiates you from 'do you have any vacancies for...'

                            I had a 3rd mate call me a month after I spoke to him to thank me for referring him onto another company where he got a temporary contract.

                            Good luck

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