Working in the shipping industry is international, constantly changing and ever evolving. Over 90% of the world's trade is carried by sea, it is the most cost-effective way to move commodities vital to the world's economy.
The movement of cargoes and passengers is a task for highly skilled organisers found in the offices of shipping, freight, logistics and port companies. The day to day life of maritime professionals involved planning each and every move in the transit of both the ships and the ships crews, depending on their role in the company and the maritime sector the company is involved in, different types of people with different skill-sets are required so that the industry as a whole runs smoothly and efficiently.
Shipping companies are always in need of well-qualified administrative staff that are hand-on problem solvers able to cope with all matter of changing conditions. The size of the back-office depends heavily on the type and scope of company operations.
Qualifications required by staff will also vary depending on the type of company, for example, a cruise-liner company needs a multi-disciplinary team and will be as dependent on the in-house accountant with second or third language skills as they are on the Captain, crew and entertainment staff working aboard ship. A container company may need someone with good analytical skills and who is excellent at building business relationships with an international network of contacts.
The career opportunities in the shipping sector are vast, beginning with ports operations and progressing onto maritime law, shipbroking, marine insurance, ship finance, maritime logistics and policy making. To get a better understanding of what professions and roles are available, explore the maritime professional profiles below.