Top 5 Merchant Navy Jobs | Top Jobs to Explore in the Merchant Navy, as Picked by Chiltern Maritime

Top 5 Merchant Navy Jobs | Top Jobs to Explore in the Merchant Navy, as Picked by Chiltern Maritime - 05/07/2024

The career prospects within the Merchant Navy are as big, expansive, and full of possibilities as the earth’s oceans themselves (well, almost…) As Chiltern Maritime continues to accept applications for its 2024 Maritime Cadetship Programmes, here’s a list of the top five Merchant Navy jobs – to help you plan what comes next in your career…

No matter what job you have in the Merchant Navy, the industry offers all its employees the opportunity to explore the world, seek adventure, experience diverse cultures, learn life-enhancing skills, and build a career for themselves that will last their lifetime.

For those who are thinking of joining the Merchant Navy but are still uncertain which career path they’ll take, we’ve compiled a list of the top five jobs within the industry. This way, you’ll be able to get to grips with the type of work you might experience when you’re out on the seas.

Here is a rundown of five of the top jobs within the Merchant Navy:

Chiltern Maritime Top Merchant Navy Jobs

Deck Officer

A Deck Officer has a very varied role onboard, they will find themselves maintaining watches on the bridge at sea, then covering maintenance and cargo operations when in port. A Deck Officer’s role will be to handle safe navigation, passenger and cargo loading, ship stability, communications, and a whole range of other activities.

At Chiltern Maritime, we see a large number of intakes for our Deck Officer Cadetship programme – and our cadets go on to have incredibly varied, massively-rewarding careers within the industry.

Marine Engineering Officer

A Marine Engineering Officer is in charge of keeping the ship afloat – literally.

Depending on the vessel they’re working on, a Marine Engineering Officer is responsible for maintaining and operating the ship’s main propulsion machinery, deck machinery, air conditioning plants, refrigeration plants, and domestic and electrical services. Engineer Officers might also be required to keep watches in the ship’s Engine Room.

This can be an incredibly lucrative job, with plenty of career advancement.

Chiltern Maritime Merchant Navy Jobs

Electro-Technical Officer

An Electro-Technical Officer (ETO) is a specialist officer working within the Engineering Department. While the job can be varied, an ETO is often responsible for maintaining onboard engineering and electronic systems (including propulsion control, radio communications, and electronic navigation aids).

Since this job requires specialist skills, there can be a high demand for ETOs. Many workers who are employed in these roles have the luxury of choosing which companies they want to work for as they climb the career ladder!

Chief Engineer

A Merchant Navy Chief Engineer is one of the industry’s most sought-after jobs, but it is very much in the realm of possibility for those who start off as Marine Engineers.

A Chief Engineer is the central component, who oversees the operation, maintenance, and repair of all systems on a ship – mechanical, electrical, or otherwise. They ensure that the engine, propulsion systems, generators, and other machinery function properly and efficiently to keep the vessel running safely.

To do this, the Chief Engineer manages a team of engineering officers and crew members, allocating tasks and supervising maintenance activities.

It’s a role for those who crave responsibility, are excellent at what they do, and are willing to be paid handsomely for their talents…

Chiltern Maritime Top Five Merchant Navy Jobs Captain


The Captain of a Merchant Navy vessel is the one who holds the ultimate authority and responsibility for the vessel. The Captain oversees everything from admin duties to cargo operations, crew management to navigation, and emergency responses to ensuring everyone on board is properly equipped for every voyage.

Taking on the role of Captain requires a lot of experience in the Merchant Navy, and it’s obviously not a role that you can just jump into. However, by including it in this list, you can see just how far your career can advance when you start working in the maritime industry. Being the Captain of a vessel is one of the most rewarding jobs you can ask for!

Got it! So How Can I Get Started Within the Merchant Navy?

You can take your first step in getting an entry-level position in the Merchant Navy right away by undertaking our cadetship programme.

Chiltern Maritime is currently accepting applicants for the current year’s Cadetship programme, and you can apply now by clicking here.

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