Do British ex-seafarer officers have the skills that shore-based employers really need? In November Lord Mountevans publicly requested industry support in looking at the skill requirements for seafarers leaving the sea and wishing to have a maritime career ashore.
Since then there have been significant developments with the government undertaking a lot of the research work that was originally envisaged, especially in terms of numbers of former seafarers coming ashore.
Recommendation 8 of the Mountevans report highlighted the need to understand the additional skills as well as the education that may be required by a former seafarer to enhance his or her future value to an employer.
In response to the report, five organisations, each with a keen interest in the through-life-careers of seafarers and their subsequent utility ashore, started work to take the recommendations forward under "Project Ulysses". The organisations are: the Marine Society & Sea Cadets, Maritime London, The Merchant Navy Training Board (MNTB), NAUTILUS and Trinity House's charitable arm.
Navigate PR and Occam Insight have undertaken research providing an insight into the UK ex-officer seafarer skill sets that are perceived to be lacking by UK shore-based employers.
The aim is to understand what training or education (if any) is needed to ensure seafarers wishing to take shore jobs are better prepared and more attractive to employers.
The findings of the report will be fed into the UK Maritime Growth Strategy and could, potentially, help ensure greater government funding for providing relevant training for seafarers looking to make the transition from ship to shore.
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