The captain or master of a ship is the highest ranking officer on a ship and they act on behalf of the ship owner.

The captain is in charge of the daily activities of his ship, he makes sure all the departments are doing their tasks efficiently; the heads of all departments report to him directly.

A ship captain must have vast experience with ships and their operations, most times they must have worked their ways up the ranks of ship crews. A ship captain must be skilled not only in management but in every part of running a ship and in cruise and passenger ships they must learn how to play host to passengers. The success of a voyage depends on how well the captain manages the ship’s activities and crew. The captain also keeps formal record of everything that happens on a ship.


Engine Officer

Engine Officers in Ship

An engine officer is a licensed mariner in charge of propulsion plants, support systems operation and maintenance for a ship and its crew, passenger and cargo. An engine officer is usually educated and qualified as engineering technicians.

Engine officers maintain and operate all mechanical and electrical equipment on board including ships engines, pumps, fuel systems, lifts, refrigerators, ventilation system, sewage treatment etc.

Engineers diagnose faults in equipment, manage, monitor, maintain and adjust equipment and repair and assemble equipment; engineers should have problem solving skills.

Ships need engineers to function.


Electrical Technical

Ship Management in Nigeria

One of the most important crew member of a ship, they handle the electrical equipment of a vessel. Their main duty is to make sure the electrical equipment on a ship are functioning and maintained.

They work under the chief engineer who supervises everything on the vessel.

Maintenance and working of electrical equipment on board.

They work the electrical parts of a vessel like the engine rooms, radio communications, gyro compass, radar system etc. and other basic electrical equipment.

Vessels like cruise ships and passenger ships require the services pf an electrical engineer due to their having huge electrical equipment and unmanned technology handling them.


Fitter / Welder

Welding and fitting

Ship fitters are skilled technicians that fabricate, assemble and erect structural parts of ships. This is done by either welding or riveting. They help build and repair ships; replacing or repairing metal parts of a ship’s structure, welding various types of metal, following blueprints, ensuring a ship’s structure can withstand the pressure of the ocean.



The most junior rating in the engine room of a vessel, their duties consists of cleaning engine spaces and machinery,  maintenance of working areas assisting engineers, working as part of the watch team, working with ordinary seamen and assisting other personnel in various tasks.

Being a wiper is a great way to gain experience to prepare them for a maritime job in future.



Food and Fresh Water Supply on ship Nigeria

This part of the crew is in charge of preparing and serving food to crew of a ship; they include the chief steward, chief cook/chef, second cook, bakery/patry man, cleaner, dish washers.

The chief steward is in charge of the operations of the catering department, assigning duties and preparing the daily food menu.

The chef is responsible all the food preparation and quality control in the Steward’s department of a ship.

Second Cook supervises the food preparation and quality control.


Shore Position

Shore positions are jobs in the maritime business that do not need the person to join a ship’s crew or go on sea voyages to perform. These jobs can be done from shore. These are jobs like:

Ship chandelling

Ship brokering

Shipping agency

Ship management etc.




A cadet is a deck officer or nautical apprentice on a ship to learn the basic duties of a deck officer on board a ship, a cadet has to spend a specific amount of time at sea to be able to take the second mate exams. On board the ship they undergo different trainings: watchkeeping with the chief officer, at port with the second mate and normal deck jobs with the bosun.

Cadet tasks include:

Tank Soundings

 Ship Maintenance

Deck Work

Navigation etc.



Safety Officer

Manning Agency

The job of the safety officer is to take responsibility of all duties related to the safety of the ship like:

To survey the ship for all potential hazards on the ship.

Supervising and ensuring compliance with the SMS of the ship

 Identifying deficiencies existing security plans and suggesting changes to the captain

Carrying out a safety inspections at regular intervals

Making sure the crew always perform their tasks with a safety-conscious attitude and know the IMS code and relevant health and safety regulations

Keeping the ship crew updated with all the latest improvements and deficiencies that might need to be addressed

Listen and deal with complaints of the crew related to health and safety.


Able Seaman

A seaman who has at least more than two years of experience at sea is referred to as an able seaman; a naval rating of the deck compartment of a merchant vessel. In addition to their experience, ordinary seamen also have to pass recommended tests to become an able seaman.

  • DP Officer (Dynamic Positioning)

The DP officer is responsible for controlling the Dynamic Positioning System. The DPS automatically maintains a ship’s position and heading using its own propellers and thrusters. The DPS is a complex system because it needs to combine position reference sensors, wind sensors, motion sensors that calculate the effect of environmental forces on the ship’s position.

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