What Do Ship Engineers Do (including Their Typical Day At Work)

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Job Description, Daily Responsibilities, and Work Life

Ship Engineers

Ship Engineers supervise and coordinate activities of crew engaged in operating and maintaining engines, boilers, deck machinery, and electrical, sanitary, and refrigeration equipment aboard ship.

Salary
$81110
Becoming One
Medium
Education
Post-secondary certificate
Job Satisfaction
Low
Job Growth

Personality
Interest Match



Job Description

Job Description

Ship Engineers supervise and coordinate activities of crew engaged in operating and maintaining engines, boilers, deck machinery, and electrical, sanitary, and refrigeration equipment aboard ship. They also start engines to propel ships, and regulate engines and power transmissions to control speeds of ships, according to directions from captains or bridge computers.

Other tasks include:

  • 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 or participate in emergency drills, as required.
  • Monitor engine, machinery, or equipment indicators when vessels are underway, and report abnormalities to appropriate shipboard staff.
  • Maintain complete records of engineering department activities, including machine operations.
  • Perform general marine vessel maintenance or repair work, such as repairing leaks, finishing interiors, refueling, or maintaining decks.
  • Maintain electrical power, heating, ventilation, refrigeration, water, or sewerage systems.

We asked Ship Engineers how satisfied they are with their job. Here is what they said.

Job satisfaction

61%

How meaningful is this job

47%


61% of them said they were satisfied with their job and 47% said they find that their job makes the world a better place or helps to make someone else’s life better.



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Typical Day At Work

On a daily basis, Ship Engineers clean engine parts and keep engine rooms clean. They maintain electrical power, heating, ventilation, refrigeration, water, or sewerage systems.

A typical day for a Ship Engineer will also include:

  • Perform general marine vessel maintenance or repair work, such as repairing leaks, finishing interiors, refueling, or maintaining decks.
  • Maintain complete records of engineering department activities, including machine operations.
  • 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.
  • Maintain or repair engines, electric motors, pumps, winches, or other mechanical or electrical equipment, or assist other crew members with maintenance or repair duties.
  • Monitor and test operations of engines or other equipment so that malfunctions and their causes can be identified.

We asked some Ship Engineers a few questions to find out what else does their work day look like. Here is what we found.

Do you have telephone conversations everyday in this job? 41% said yes
How important is it to work in a team in this job? 25% said very important
Do you have group discussions everyday in this job? 85% said yes
Do you talk or work with customers everyday in this job? 9% said yes
Do you have to deal with angry customers everyday in this job? 7% said yes
Do you have to make decisions everyday in this job? 61% said yes

Other responsibilities

Besides their typical day, Ship Engineers also perform or participate in emergency drills, as required. They may also order and receive engine room stores, such as oil or spare parts, maintain inventories, and record usage of supplies.

On a weekly to monthly basis, Ship Engineers Fabricate engine replacement parts, such as valves, stay rods, or bolts, using metalworking machinery. They might also Monitor the availability, use, or condition of lifesaving equipment or pollution preventatives to ensure that international regulations are followed.

In addition, they 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.

Although specific duties may vary, many of them 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.

To some Ship Engineers, it is also their responsibility to Perform general marine vessel maintenance or repair work, such as repairing leaks, finishing interiors, refueling, or maintaining decks.


Working life

Working hours

More than 40 hours per week

Working schedule

Regular schedule like a 9 to 5

In a typical work week as a Ship Engineer, you can expect to work more than 40 hours per week.

Do Ship Engineers work in an office-style work environment?

Never
44%


Every day
40%


Do Ship Engineers work outdoors?

Every day
64%


Once a week
24%



Is this right for me

Best personality for this career

The Builders and The Organizers

People who are suitable for this job tends to like work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They like working with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery..

They also like following set procedures and routines. They like working with data and details more than with ideas.

You can read more about these career personality types here.



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Related to Ship Engineers Job Description

Ship Engineers job description, what do Ship Engineers do, typical day for Ship Engineers, what is it like to work as a Ship Engineer, how many hours do Ship Engineers work, day to day work of a Ship Engineer

Additional resources

http://www.bls.gov/OOH/transportation-and-material-moving/water-transportation-occupations.htm
http://www.marad.dot.gov/
http://www.uscg.mil/
http://www.americanwaterways.com/


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