How to Write Interview Invitation Emails in Maritime Recruitment
Aug 30, 2022 · 12 mins read ·Maritime Recruitment
If you’re working in maritime recruitment you know that the way you communicate with your seafarer candidates is crucial for getting them through the hiring process quickly and efficiently.
This in itself is important because the smoother your recruitment process, the more likely it is that an applicant will stay with you throughout the time it takes to find, interview and hire them.
Ghosting - AKA disappearing without a trace - is just as common in the recruitment world as it is in dating! And when candidates suddenly quit halfway through the process it can be costly, time-consuming and frustrating for you as a recruitment officer or manning agent.
That’s why we’ve written a series of blog posts about making your email correspondence the best it can be so that you can take much of the stress out of maritime recruitment.
From introducing yourself to prospective candidates for your jobs at sea and letting applicants know whether they’ve made the next stage in your recruitment pipeline to writing a phone interview invitation email and even a rejection email, we’ve covered all the messages you’ll need to send when hiring seafarers.
In this blog post we’re going to take a look at writing an interview email invitation template that invites candidates to come and talk to you in person.
How to write interview invitation emails in maritime recruitment
Phone, Skype, Zoom and Google Meet interviews are frequently used in the maritime industry. When considerable distances are involved, they’re a far cheaper and more convenient option for both maritime recruitment agencies and shipping companies as well as for the seafarers themselves.
But there are occasions when you really do need to talk to a candidate in person.
Maybe your vacant position is for one of the higher merchant navy ranks such as Master or you’re recruiting for Chief Officer jobs. Or maybe your Oilers or Wipers are in the same city as you and interviewing them isn’t such a big time suck.
Either way, you’ll be able to reach out to candidates more quickly and save time by sending them an interview invitation email that is a template.
Interview invitation email templates
Apart from actually offering a successful candidate one of your jobs at sea, the interview stage can be the most exciting step in your recruitment pipeline.
This is likely to be your first contact with a potential employee so it’s crucial that you get your interview email invitation template just right to increase the chances of the candidate accepting your invite.
After all - a skilled seafarer who is looking for seafarer jobs won’t be on the market for long, so make sure you create a great impression and snap them up before your competition!
There are a couple of things to consider before creating your interview email invitation templates: where will the interview be held and who will be speaking to the candidate? Is a manning agent or one of your maritime recruitment agencies involved? How long will the interview be?
If you’re recruiting for Chief Officer jobs it’s likely to be a lot longer than an interview with an Oiler, Cook or Deck Cadet.
Preparation and interview management are key and will ensure you’re ready to welcome your candidate when they arrive.
Let's get started.
Writing an interview email invitation in maritime recruitment
- In your first paragraph remind the candidate which of your vacant jobs at sea they’ve applied for and which one of the shipping companies you’re from or representing. They may well have applied for a number of seafarer jobs and clearly stating who you are will eliminate any potential confusion during the recruitment process!
- In the second paragraph, tell the candidate exactly why you’re contacting them - in this case to invite them to an interview. Clearly state the time and date
- Next you’ll need to give them some idea of what to expect. This will enable the candidate to prepare for the interview and also help to keep the meeting on track when it comes to it.
- In your fourth paragraph give your candidate the address and telephone number for your office (or other venue where the interview is to take place) and let them know how to get there. Include a link to a map if necessary and also tell them who they should ask for on arrival.
- Finish by urging them to take action by letting them know the deadline for their reply. This should make them act quickly and help you plan ahead.
As with your phone interviews, your face-to-face interviews for your seafarer jobs will result in one of two things: you’ll want to hire the applicant or you’ll decide that they’re not suitable for the position.
Therefore your next step will be to either send them an email offering them the job, or an email rejecting them.
We’ve talked before about why you should consider sending rejection emails but to recap, whether you're recruiting for Chief Officer jobs or looking for a Deck Cadet, it’s a common courtesy to someone who has expressed an interest in working with your shipping company.
It also doesn’t burn any bridges should you have a suitable position for them in the future, and it makes your company and brand look better.
Writing a rejection email template after an interview
- In your first paragraph thank the candidate for taking the time and effort to apply for one of your jobs at sea. It won’t do anyone any favors to delay the bad news, so cut to the chase and explain that unfortunately they have not been successful in their application.
- Some shipping companies have a policy of providing feedback to unsuccessful candidates so you may want to offer a brief explanation as to why they were not successful. You could even include the interviewed applicants to chosen applicant ratio if you feel it will create a more positive candidate experience. After all, being one of fifteen people interviewed will hurt a lot less than being one of three.
How to make writing recruitment emails easier
It goes without saying that the last thing you want to do is to write every single email from scratch. Writing email templates and keeping them saved to use in advance is crucial if you want to save yourself time.
Templates also make sure that correspondence leaving your department is consistent, no matter who is sending it.
But if you're thinking that you might as well just write your emails as you go because it's not really going to save much more time than having to find your template and then copy and paste it into a blank message, the good news is Martide can help.
If you already use Martide, you know all about our inbuilt messaging feature which allows crew operators, recruitment officers, manning agents, candidates and hired seafarers all stay in touch.
But did you also know about our Message Templates functionality?
Martide’s email message templates make life even easier
Our Message Templates feature makes it quicker and easier for shipowners, ship managers and crew managers to communicate with your contacts.
And it’s really simple to use. Simply write your email, save it in Message Templates and then select the relevant template from your inbox when you’re about to email someone. This means you don’t have to type the same messages again and again. And you don't need to go and find the template to copy and paste it either.
Plus you don’t have to just use this feature for interview related messages. You can save any email you like: A short message that gets sent out alongside a contract, an update for a manning agent, a notification about travel arrangements. The options are endless.
That’s just one of many handy hacks that makes Martide the crewing system and maritime recruitment platform of choice when it comes to boosting productivity and making your operations more agile.
Why not go and take a look at the Message Templates function when you’ve finished reading this blog post. It’s under Settings in the menu on the left hand side of the page when you log into your Martide account.
More ideas for maritime recruitment email templates
If you’d like to refresh your memory on how to write email templates that will help you attract more talent, our blog post about writing candidate sourcing emails should help.
Or maybe you’d like a recap of writing emails to send to seafarers to let them know you’ve received their application?
Meanwhile, next up is the big one: how to write an email template offering a successful candidate the job!
What should you do next?
If you’re a small to mid-sized shipowner or manager, or a manning agency, and you’d like to streamline your recruitment process and crew planning operations, we can help.
As one of the shipping industry’s most proactive and experienced maritime recruitment agencies, Martide will help you fill your vacant seafarer jobs quickly and easily. It’s free to post a job on our website and mobile app and our entire platform has been designed to make recruitment and planning a whole lot easier.
Get in touch with us today to discuss your needs or to schedule a free, no-obligation demo of our crewing software.
This blog post was originally published on October 11th 2019 and updated on August 30th 2022.
Eve is Martide's content writer and publishes regular posts on everything from our maritime recruitment and crew planning software to life at sea.