‘Seafarers content with life at sea’

A new survey being carried out as part of the Baltic and International Maritime Council/International Chamber of Shipping Manpower Report 2015 is directly engaging seafarers in order to understand their views on life at sea and outlook for the industry’s manpower in the years ahead.

Preliminary results of the new survey indicate that the majority of respondents are content with life at sea, according to reports by Safety4sea.

The BIMCO/ICS Manpower report, which has been published every five years since 1990, has traditionally been based on two main quantitative data sources from which the current seafarer supply and demand situation is estimated: a questionnaire completed by shipping companies and a questionnaire completed by national maritime administrations.

In addition to those sources, the new Manpower Report will also solicit the opinions from a wider number of maritime professionals with knowledge of the ‘sharp end’ of the manpower supply situation, including seafarers, lecturers at maritime education and training institutions, manning agents, maritime unions, and port welfare workers.

The survey of seafarers is the first of the targeted surveys for this year’s report. More than 500 seafarers have already responded to the survey, representing over 40 nationalities.

Some of the other preliminary findings are said to include ‘happy ships’, timely wage payments and career promotion opportunities were the most popular responses indicated when seafarers were asked about the important factors that influenced their decisions to stay with their current employers.

“66 per cent of the seafarers that responded estimated that it would take them less than three months to secure another job in the industry if they chose to leave their current company.

“Basic pay and internet access were the most popular responses provided as improvements in conditions at sea when asked about changes within the last two years,” the report added.

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