Headhunters good? bad? indifferent?

I would like some feedback on maritime headhunters. I have viewed a few different websites and saw a wide range in fees. I have an AB Unlimited, Lifeboatman and a 100 ton Master ticket, live in Florida and looking to work in the oilfield. I really don’t have the funds to drive all over South Louisiana and pay for meals and hotels while I am knocking on doors.

My experience to date is limited to Charter Fishing Vessels and deliveries of private vessels in the GOM and Coastal Atlantic. Because my experience is limited, I see more opportunity to focus on sailing as an Ab until I can gain the sea time to upgrade my masters tonnage, possibly a TOAR, ect.

I really don’t care what I do provided I am working, can cook like a champion, just need my foot in the Merchant Marine Door.

I would appreciate any feedback regarding headhunters (good or bad) and if good, possibly a few recommendations to steer me in the right direction.

Kelly Sweeney, at Maritime Headhunters.

Two thumbs up.

I’ve never worked with a head hunter myself, but I’ve seen a lot of guys who were hired through one, and most of them sucked. I worked at one company that mostly hired through them and they had some pretty terrible hands - a handful of decent folks too, but overwelmingly terrible.

I know things might be more difficult right now, but I’ve never ever had a problem getting a new job in less than a week. You have to go shake hands, call people, show up, dress appropriately, etc. If you’re mailing or email resumes, you’re just wasting time. If you’re a go getter you’ll get noticed.

The head hunters generally take your first check. That seems pretty expensive for making a couple of phone calls.

Good luck working through it.


That is Great advice. I contracted with Sweeney based on the advise from Capt A. Capt Sweeney has been great and his fees are fair provided he finds something. He emailed today to basically say nothing will be shaking till the end of next month or later.

My main question is: Dress, do I wear a suit? or is that over the top, instead do I go the dress pants and golf shirt route? I plan to head back to the ditch (Morgan City / Houma) in August to take Radar an ARPA at Louisiana technical so I figured I would work the Houma area after leaving Morgan City. I would appreciate feedback on a suit versus the business casual route.

I always wore nice pants (usually khaki), button-up shirt and a sport coat… but left off the tie. It has worked for me.

My company is giving a lot of interviews now and I’ve seen a few guys wear the same outfit without the coat and get a favorable response.

Some people can pull anything off but, usually, the ones who wear a suit look uncomfortable (a bad sign) and a golf shirt either looks too casual or reveals too much of one’s personal style (which is likely to slash with, at least one, of the interviewer’s tastes).

My advice is to find a middle ground.

I have a question this headhunter can help o/s to find jobs? anyway i send him a message in his site,hope that he can help me to find a job :rolleyes:

[QUOTE=Luck.Runs.Out;16482]I have a question this headhunter can help o/s to find jobs? anyway i send him a message in his site,hope that he can help me to find a job :rolleyes:[/QUOTE]

if you give him some time, kelly sweeny will find your dog a job on a boat. he can place anybody, but you have to understand that the guy doesnt make jobs up. he can only place a person where there is a job they are qualified for. also it can take a while to find an entry level job.

he got me an os job a few months ago, but it was a dual billet as os/medic. straight os jobs are hard to come by. took me almost eight months to find this job. be patient.

whats good about kellys service is that he only charges 10% of your first contract. you dont pay him unless he gets you a gig and you’re not paying him any sort of service fees during the time he’s working but not finding anything.

anyway, ive only worked with kelly sweeney. i can 100% reccomend him, but cant speak to anybody else.

Capt Sweeney has been great to work with thus far I must say. Although he has not found me a job yet, I haven’t found myself one either :slight_smile: If I had RFPNW on my AB Unlimited ticket he could have placed me right out of the gate…I feel he is working hard for me.

As others have said, he is a smidgen of the price of others…hopefully a job will come soon.

Kelly gets OS jobs occasionally- but as an OS myself-I can tell you it takes a while.

One of the AB’S on my ship just got placed through him.

My advice- sign up for every headhunter- apply for every job you can- and be persistent.

It took me MONTHS to find something- I hope you have better luck:)

If you are new to the industry, sign up with everyone, headhunters, unions, job boards, etc. As a newbie, you are playing the numbers game. Patience and persistence will eventually pay off. If you are experienced and do not want to go the union placement route, try the direct approach or a head hunter. If you are going the head hunter route, Capt. Kelly Sweeny is one of your best bets, but be ready to go to work. Don’t apply if you are not ready to work on a short notice.
Good luck out there.:cool:

I applied in every company that i find,when i was in the Sea School in St Thomas there Was a Captain From Chouest he tell me apply in chouest they are looking for OS,I was thinking that is a walk in the park now i know that i was wrong or maybe the people around was giving me a wrong advice about that industry but i keep searching.i gonna join the SIU apprentice program:rolleyes:

[QUOTE=intheweeds;17132]Don’t apply if you are not ready to work on a short notice.
Good luck out there.:cool:[/QUOTE]

and he means SHORT notice. the last hitch i did i got through kelly sweeny. from the first word i heard about it to me getting on the plane was 36hrs. i was literally slipping lines in pascagula 72hrs after the first phone call about the job.

of course, every coin has two sides. it took him a few months to find that job, so i was on the edge of my chair for the first month waiting for him to call. then i settled down, but was still anxious. then i had pretty much written off the idea of going back out and was looking at go nowhere minimum wage jobs around home and BAMM!! just when you though it was safe to go back in the water…

so if you really want to ship, be ready to go.