Here at Spinnaker we try to immerse our staff in all things shipping-related; not like the old days when simply hiring 'shipping people' would do. Now we recognise that not everyone is cut out for the recruitment game, so we employ astute, able and dedicated staff and in turn teach them about the industry at a high level of detail.
One of the perks of such training is the chance to get out of the office and breathe the estuary air – we're lucky enough to have a container terminal right on our doorstep! This winter, three of our gang trundled merrily along to Purfleet to visit one of Euroship's ro-ros, an impressive and imposing ship which they explored courtesy of Euroship's MD Frank Davies.
No matter how much training we do in the office, ship and port visits really bring to life what happens in shipping. Our trainees for the day met the Chief Officer who explained the extreme timeliness of working on such a ship – they couldn't believe the rigidity of the timetabling and how organised the ship has to be when loading and discharging at such a flying rate. It was a great indication of how it all works – and how time is very much money.
Euroship manage Cobelfret ro-ros on the CLdN Continental Europe to UK routes, so Spinnaker's team got an eye-opener into the life of crews working in short-sea shipping. “These guys keep the ship absolutely immaculate and they run on twelve hour routes so they hardly ever get the chance to spend time ashore,” said Sandra Sutton, one of Spinnaker's technical recruitment consultants. “We were impressed that Euroship employ crew on back to back rotations dedicated to their vessels to ensure familiarity. I'm sure that's why it's all so organised and one of the reasons the ship was so obviously well maintained. We also appreciated the differing conditions on board a ship, from the sweltering engine room (which, unbelievably, is even hotter when at sea!) to the blasting estuary winds outside.”
From loading timetables and sneaking a peek at the internet-enabled mess room to seeing how complex and advanced the navigation and communications systems are, all these lessons add up to helping our staff here at Spinnaker understand what our clients want and what our candidates do. So a big thank you from us to Euroship for taking part in Spinnaker's shipping training and showing us an even closer view of the industry that we know so well.