7 News Year's Resolutions for Crew Managers & Manning Agents

Piece of paper with 'new year resolutions' written on it

New Year's resolutions don’t have to be all about going to the gym, drinking more water and eating less chocolate. They’re also a great way to set goals and improve yourself, and that definitely applies to your professional life! 

As a busy Crew Manager or Recruitment Officer we know that staying one step ahead of your maritime recruitment needs and your crew planning ops can be challenging. So that’s why we’ve come up with some achievable resolutions that you can implement at work.

But first, how do you go about deciding upon your resolutions? Here are some tips for creating effective work-related resolutions.

How to create effective work-based New Year’s resolutions

Start by brainstorming and consider what aspects of your maritime recruitment or crew planning operations you'd like to improve and what challenges you want to overcome. Do you need to develop any new skills to achieve your goals?

Then gather some inspiration by taking a look at your career aspirations, your shipping company or mannings agency’s goals, and recent feedback you've received. Talking to your coworkers and acquaintances can also provide valuable insights.

You also need to be specific by defining your goals clearly and avoiding ambiguity. So instead of  "be more organized" aim for something that is more along the lines of "make sure seafarer job vacancies are posted at least 6 weeks before the crew change date where possible."

Read more: 11 Surefire Ways to be More Organized at Work

Your resolutions must also be attainable and you need to set realistic goals that align with your resources, workload, and bandwidth - otherwise you’re just setting yourself up for failure.

Finally, assigning a deadline to each resolution/goal if possible will help keep you on track and motivated. For example; “reach out to providers of crew planning software by the end of February” and “have crewing system software implemented and up and running by June.”

Looking for some ideas for some work-related resolutions for your maritime recruitment or crew planning teams? Read on.

7 New Year’s resolutions for Crew Managers & Manning Agents

Adopt greener practices

We can all make a difference when it comes to being more eco-friendly. And one of the ways you can do this is by going paperless - or at least by cutting down on the amount of paper you use.

At Martide we help you reduce the amount of paper (and ink) you need to purchase, and then use and waste through our maritime recruitment and crew planning software.

When you’re running your operations online and in the Cloud, the amount you need to print is drastically reduced. For example, the seafarers in our database create their profile online which you can then look at and quickly decide whether you want to hire them or not.

Filters further simplify the process allowing you to find the right seafarer for the job without having to print out (and read through) endless resumes.

Read more: 7 Ways Maritime Recruitment Teams Can Go Paperless

Start delegating more efficiently

If you’re the manager of your maritime recruitment or crew planning team, you don’t need us to tell you how hectic life can be.

And if you’re guilty of trying to do almost everything in your department, it’s time to learn to let go and start delegating.

Put simply; it’s important to delegate to your team. If you’re a team leader or department head you probably find that you don’t have enough hours in the day to get everything done. And you shouldn’t try.

After all that’s why you hired your maritime recruitment officers or crew operators. If you’re not utilizing their skills and talents to the maximum and only having them do the bare basics of their job, you’re not exactly getting great value for money!

Read more: Why You Need to Learn to Let Go & Start Delegating 

Expand your network

Attending maritime industry events and connecting with other professionals can really help you grow or upgrade your business in ways that you might not otherwise have done.

There are countless shipping industry events throughout the year and across the globe, usually tailored to a niche in the sector.

For example, a team from Martide recently attended our very first industry event: CrewConnect in Manilla, Philippines. We found the entire experience to be a highly valuable one and made connections with other companies in the crewing sphere.

If you’re looking for new crewing system software, a training provider, manning agencies to work with, maritime recruitment software, travel agents to partner with or suppliers of seafarer medical exams, you might just find what you’re looking for at a trade show or event.

Work on your crew retention strategy

In the maritime industry where the majority of seafarers work on a contract basis, constantly dealing with crew turnover can be a major source of frustration and stress for shipowners, ship managers, crew managers, recruitment officers and manning agents.

And with qualified, experienced and diligent crew being increasingly hard to come by, crew retention is becoming a thorn in many small to mid-sized shipping companies' sides.

From using a crewing system to streamline your operations to developing a culture of tolerance, diversity and inclusivity, there are plenty of ways to make sure that your most valued seafarers return to you for their next contract.

What does that mean for you? It means far fewer headaches when it comes to meeting your crew change dates!

Read more: 9 Crew Retention Strategies to Stop Seafarers Jumping Ship

Upgrade tired or dated software 

Sometimes software can have a shelf life and if your current maritime recruitment platform or crew planning system is creating almost more problems than it solves, it’s time for an upgrade.

As mentioned above, a better crewing system can help with retention issues but it can also make life a lot simpler for the people who use it.

The best crewing software solutions will help you run the entire life cycle of both your maritime recruitment process and your crew planning and change over operations.

And if the software you use at the moment is clunky, user-unfriendly, time consuming to use and hard to navigate, it’s making life more inconvenient and stressful for your people. 

Start by doing your research, making some comparisons and asking for a free demo of the crewing systems on your short list before making a final decision.

PS: You can request your free, no obligation demo of Martide’s crewing software right here!

Plus by learning to use a new maritime software solution, you’ll also be adding to your own skill sets, which will look good on your resume if you decide to look for a similar role at another company in the industry! 

Read more: The Beginner's Guide to Crewing System Software

Make sure your job ads are reaching the right audience

We know from doing our own research that the vast majority of seafarers who are looking for jobs at sea conduct their job search and application using their cell phone.

What does that mean for you? It means that a) your job adverts must display correctly on smaller devices and b) your application process must be easy to do using a phone.

If seafarers can’t see your jobs properly and applying for them while they’re on the go is a time-consuming nightmare, they’re going to click away and look elsewhere.

Make this the year that you start making your seafarer job adverts work for you, not against you by posting them on sites that are mobile-friendly - such as Martide!

Read more: Why You're Missing Out On Seafarers if You're Not Using Us!

Commit to clearer communication

Communication is key in the maritime industry, both with your shore-based teams and with your seafarers.

The challenges can be many: language barriers, cultural misunderstandings, a hectic day in the office meaning crucial information isn’t relayed correctly or even forgotten about altogether.

How do you communicate more effectively at work? Use tools to help, such as a crewing system that has an in-built messaging system so that multiple emails and inboxes aren’t creating confusion.

The best crewing software will also allow teams and individuals to collaborate and share info in real time so that everybody is on the same page and knows the exact current status of a seafarer’s job application, hiring process or crew change dates and travel arrangements.

Read more: 5 Tips for Clearer Communication in the Maritime Industry

Finally, don’t forget to celebrate your successes and reward yourself - and your team - for achieving milestones and reaching your goals.

Creating effective New Year's resolutions at work requires taking an honest look at processes and systems that could be improved upon as well as planning and commitment. 

By following our tips and ideas and tailoring them to your crew planning or maritime recruitment departments’ specific needs you can set yourself, and your company, up for a successful and fulfilling year ahead.

PS - don’t forget to tell your crew to download our seafarer job app for iOS or Android from the Apple App Store or from Google Play!

Eve Church

Eve Church

Eve is Martide's content writer, publishing regular posts on everything from our maritime recruitment and crew planning software to life at sea. Eve has been writing professionally for more than two decades, crafting everything from SEO-focused blog posts and website landing pages to magazine articles and corporate whitepapers.

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