Ship Engineer Career

Job Description: Supervise and coordinate activities of crew engaged in operating and maintaining engines, boilers, deck machinery, and electrical, sanitary, and refrigeration equipment aboard ship.


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Ship Engineer Career

What Ship Engineers do:

  • Maintain electrical power, heating, ventilation, refrigeration, water, or sewerage systems.
  • Maintain or repair engines, electric motors, pumps, winches, or other mechanical or electrical equipment, or assist other crew members with maintenance or repair duties.
  • Perform general marine vessel maintenance or repair work, such as repairing leaks, finishing interiors, refueling, or maintaining decks.
  • Clean engine parts and keep engine rooms clean.
  • Monitor engine, machinery, or equipment indicators when vessels are underway, and report abnormalities to appropriate shipboard staff.
  • Order and receive engine room stores, such as oil or spare parts, maintain inventories, and record usage of supplies.
  • Maintain complete records of engineering department activities, including machine operations.
  • Monitor and test operations of engines or other equipment so that malfunctions and their causes can be identified.
  • Perform or participate in emergency drills, as required.
  • Monitor the availability, use, or condition of lifesaving equipment or pollution preventatives to ensure that international regulations are followed.
  • Supervise marine engine technicians engaged in the maintenance or repair of mechanical or electrical marine vessels, and inspect their work to ensure that it is performed properly.
  • Operate or maintain off-loading liquid pumps or valves.
  • Record orders for changes in ship speed or direction, and note gauge readings or test data, such as revolutions per minute or voltage output, in engineering logs or bellbooks.
  • Start engines to propel ships, and regulate engines and power transmissions to control speeds of ships, according to directions from captains or bridge computers.
  • Install engine controls, propeller shafts, or propellers.
  • Fabricate engine replacement parts, such as valves, stay rods, or bolts, using metalworking machinery.
  • Act as a liaison between a ship's captain and shore personnel to ensure that schedules and budgets are maintained and that the ship is operated safely and efficiently.

What work activities are most important?

Importance Activities

Repairing and Maintaining Mechanical Equipment - Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of mechanical (not electronic) principles.

Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material - Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.

Controlling Machines and Processes - Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).

Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.

Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings - Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.

Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

Handling and Moving Objects - Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment - Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.

Performing General Physical Activities - Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.

Documenting/Recording Information - Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards - Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.

Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.

Repairing and Maintaining Electronic Equipment - Servicing, repairing, calibrating, regulating, fine-tuning, or testing machines, devices, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of electrical or electronic (not mechanical) principles.

Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People - Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.

Thinking Creatively - Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.

Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.

Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work - Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.

Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information - Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.

Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others - Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.

Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others - Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks.

Processing Information - Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.

Training and Teaching Others - Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.

Drafting, Laying Out, and Specifying Technical Devices, Parts, and Equipment - Providing documentation, detailed instructions, drawings, or specifications to tell others about how devices, parts, equipment, or structures are to be fabricated, constructed, assembled, modified, maintained, or used.

Coaching and Developing Others - Identifying the developmental needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or otherwise helping others to improve their knowledge or skills.

Developing Objectives and Strategies - Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.

Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates - Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.

Monitoring and Controlling Resources - Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money.

Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships - Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.

Interacting With Computers - Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

Analyzing Data or Information - Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.

Scheduling Work and Activities - Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.

Assisting and Caring for Others - Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.

Performing Administrative Activities - Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.

Provide Consultation and Advice to Others - Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups on technical, systems-, or process-related topics.

Communicating with Persons Outside Organization - Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.

Holland Code Chart for a Ship Engineer