I have sailed for a few different outfits both large as well as mom and pop and would like to hear what you guys would do to make a smaller company more desirable for mariners. We are looking to decrease turnover as we expand.
Would higher pay attract? Would nicer boats attract? Grub? Better office support?
Having worked for Bouchard, I can tell you first hand that pay and nice equipment only gets you so far. Bouchard even tried hiring cooks to put out better meals. That failed also.
My list in order of importance to me:
schedule that doesn’t get messed with. I get it that there are emergencies and such, but that’s what part timers and relief captains are for.
Decent equipment, doesn’t have to be a museum, but everything should work, and be clean.
Latitude for captains to hire and fire crew. Nothing worse than being stuck with guys that are juiced in.
Pay should be OK, somewhere around union scale. When a guy who is normally an AB works as mate he should get the mate rate. A lot of companies can’t figure that out.
Safety. emphasis somewhere in the middle. I’m no safety nazi, but I don’t want my guys hurt or killed. I lost 1 deckhand, 1 tankerman and 1 engineer in the last 5 years, all preventable, none while on my boat fortunately.