Skills Gap: International Conference Addresses the Marine Engineer Shortage

In the last year, it has been widely reported that there is a shortage of maritime workers – particularly marine engineers.  As renewables grow in popularity, and the green energy sector becomes one of the fastest growing areas in the industry, more and more jobs open up for maritime employees.  The supply, however, does not meet the demand, and experts around the world are investigating new ways to attract and retain key talent.

On Monday, September 9th, Matchtech (an engineering recruitment agency) and the Institute of Marine Engineering, Science and Technology (IMarEST) held a joint, invitation-only roundtable to discuss the skills gap in the maritime workers sector as part of the London International Shipping week.

The roundtable took place at the IMarEST headquarters in the UK, chaired by Admiral Nigel Guild, CB, and drew organizations from all factions of the marine industry – from defense to academia and training.  The goal was to provide participants with a forum to discuss skill shortages in marine engineering staffing.

For those not fortunate enough to be invited, there was also a questionnaire being circulated for anyone to fill out, which aims at getting a broader sense of the nature and size of the skill gap.  The survey can be found here: http:/

Before the conference David Kelly, Head of Marketing for IMarEST, said, “We are really looking forward to exploring topics such as the size and level of concern of the skills gap in the marine sector; where the recruitment of future marine engineers will come from; the value of marine engineering as a career; and the steps the industry is taking to address these issues. We’ll also be asking whether organizations invest in their staff and support the professional development of marine engineers which is something that the IMarEST is very well placed to support.”

Following the roundtable, a whitepaper was published encompassing many of the issues discussed at the forum.  The paper included a skills survey, as well as information on the number of engineers necessary to accomplish the projected growth of the marine sector.  It also discussed the challenges of attracting and keeping key talent – particularly new graduates – as well as the cost of recruiting the best prospects.

All of this is good news for anyone looking to get their start in maritime employment.  At, we are adding new opportunities to our job listings every day.  Take a look and find the opportunity you’ve been waiting for!