For most servicemen and women coming out of the armed forces into civilian life, the transition can be quite a bumpy experience, especially when it comes to finding job opportunities in other fields. The shipbuilding and ship refit working environments usually offer better new career paths for most ex-armed force tradespeople. That’s because, compared to other job sectors, this field makes the most use of their experience and technical know-how from the armed forces.
Fortunately, the presence of recruitment agencies that specialise in marine jobs placements has pretty much brought some level of ease to finding jobs in shipbuilding and ship refit environments. Before you get a job in these environments, here’s what you can expect from the recruitment process.
Shipbuilding and ship refit environments in the UK
For anyone to make it in this job sector, a good knowledge of ship repair, shipbuilding, or, in some cases, heavy engineering, including factory maintenance, may be necessary. For anyone with experience working in the marine mechanics’ field or any other part of the armed forces, there is always an opportunity to start a new career in shipbuilding and ship refit.
While shipbuilding may have declined in the UK over the last few years, many shipyards are still engaged in building ships of all sizes. There are loads of opportunities for ship refit jobs. But as indicated earlier, some of these jobs will need security clearance which inherently comes with being in the armed forces.
Qualifications and requirements
To get the clearance you need, you will have to meet some basic requirements. First, you need to be over the minimum age. In the UK, the legal minimum age for general employment is 16 years and above.
Secondly, you also need to meet all necessary health and fitness standards required to work in a physically demanding sector like ship refit and shipbuilding. Another crucial requirement is to get certificates of competency (CoC). These are particularly important, as they allow you to take on certain specialist tasks as part of your job.
You might also want to grab a copy of a seaman’s discharge book. With this, you can have a clear understanding of your sea service and qualifications.
To work as a shipbuilder, in general, you need to have one of two things:
You need to have significant experience as an apprentice in the field, equipped with all the training you need. Or, two, you can go for a degree from a maritime shipbuilding program. An apprentice position can last for many years, depending on how well you grasp the fundamentals, the creative, and the practical aspects of shipbuilding.
However, suppose you are an ex UK serviceman or woman or an ex-armed force tradesperson coming out of the armed forces into civilian life and work. In that case, your extensive experience working as a marine should make it easier to shipbuilding and ship refit environments. All you’ll need is the necessary security clearance and the right recruitment platform to join.