We’ve already written about how valuable email templates can be to your recruitment process when you're hiring for jobs at sea. And while it will undoubtedly take some time to get your templates written so that you’re happy with them, they will save you immeasurable time and effort in the long run. The trick is to be adaptable and use technology to help you.

The first batch of recruitment emails you’ll want to tackle are sourcing email templates for the maritime industry.

The first step is usually the most difficult and that’s certainly true when it comes to getting the tone right for your initial contact with a target candidate. You’ve not yet established a relationship with them and you need to grab their attention and pique their interest in your offering.

How to email candidates to tell them abut your jobs at sea

Sourcing candidates for your jobs at sea can also be broken down into two categories: cold candidate outreach whereby you are contacting someone out of the blue and referred outreach in which the candidate has been suggested to you by a colleague, employee or other acquaintance. We’ll take a look at both types of email here:

hand outstretched across a lake with land in the distance

Cold candidate outreach emails - first steps

First of all, research your candidate - thoroughly! No matter whether you're a maritime recruitment agency or a commercial shipping company. A quick Google search may be tempting but for your email to have any meaning you’ll also need to check LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter etc to get a feel for the person you’re reaching out to.

Related: Why Your Shipping Company Needs a Social Media Presence

Check their current or previous work experience and look at their skills and qualifications. Then use this research to determine their suitability for the seafarer jobs you’re recruiting for.

Writing a cold candidate email template


  1. Craft an eye-catching subject line. Keep it simple and make it clear what the email is about. Basically tell them what the job is and ask if they’re interested.
  2. In your opening paragraph let them know how you found them and that you see they have the kind of experience you’re looking for - and why. It’s crucial to encourage the prospective candidate to keep reading by making this about them. It shows this isn’t just a spammy copy and paste email!
  3. In your second paragraph, tell them who you are and explain why you think working together would be mutually beneficial. They already know there must be something in it for you so be transparent: tell them securing an applicant such as themselves would make a great hire for your commercial shipping company.
  4. Finish by making it obvious what they need to do next. Avoid coming across as forceful but instead suggest what they might like to do. The candidate will want to feel that the decision to act is in their hands. Ensure the link to the job description on your website or the advert on the maritime jobs board you use is clear. They want to know that the seafarer jobs you're offering are real and that you are who you say they are. Include a link to your LinkedIn profile and the company’s website. This way they will be far more likely to take action and apply for your jobs at sea.
smartphone with white screen with hello written on it in black

Referred candidate outreach emails - first steps

This is a little easier than cold outreach as you have the benefit of having a mutual acquaintance who already thinks the candidate would be a good fit for the vacancies your company or maritime recruitment agency has to offer. However you should still do your research and satisfy yourself that you also feel the candidate is suitable for the position and your company. Then make the most of your connection by asking the referrer how to best tailor your email to the potential candidate.  

Read more: The Ultimate Guide to Growing Your Candidate Database

Writing a referred candidate email template


  1. The referrer’s name should be at, or near, the start of the subject line - this could be the factor that makes the candidate open the email.
  2. In your opening paragraph mention how you know the person who referred them, their credibility and how the candidate fits into all of this. There’s no need to go into masses of details - this can be discussed at a later date or indeed an interview.
  3. Your second paragraph should explain what your company does and what the role or open crewing position in commercial shipping you’re recruiting for is. Include a link to the job description on your website or the advert on the maritime jobs board.
  4. Like the cold candidate outreach email template, explain what the candidate should do next if they’re interested and sign off with links to LinkedIn and the company website.
white arrow pointing right painted on blue brick wall

Follow up email for cold and referred candidate outreach

It’s up to you how many follow up emails you send to candidates but the general consensus is that a maximum of two is enough. If they haven’t replied, they’re likely not interested. Keep these emails light and don’t stray into pushy territory!

Writing a cold and referred candidate follow up email template


  1. First, justify your reason for contacting the candidate by making it clear that you contacted them previously and that this is a follow up email.
  2. In your second paragraph you should reassure the candidate that you’re emailing them for a reason. Briefly summarize the benefits for both of you should they choose to apply for the role.
  3. Again finish with a call to action, ensuring the candidate knows how to get a hold of you.

More recruitment email templates for jobs at sea

Finished writing your candidate sourcing email templates for the maritime industry? It’s time to tackle the emails you’ll be sending to seafaring candidates who’ve made it on to your shortlist of vacant jobs at sea. Check out our guide to candidate shortlist email templates for the maritime industry. You might also like to take a look at our template for a phone interview email invitation, our interview invitation email for meeting face-to-face and our email template for making a job offer.

And don’t forget that for all things maritime recruitment agency related, Martide can help. We have a pool of qualified candidates who are ready and waiting to fill your open seafarer jobs!