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Watch Videos on seafarer recruiting: COLD CALLING - PART 1 AND COLD CALLING - PART 2


The recruiting process actually starts with a call to the candidate from a human being to human being .Presently, the calls made seem to be from robot to a human being. We need to convert that to calls from a human being to human being. In this video, we will be providing you guidelines for calling seafarers which will help you. Achieved this. I have seen a lot of recruiters calling seafarers or candidates for that matter. Even I received so many calls from the recruiters, how does it sound? Good morning, Sir. I have this vacancy. This is the salary. Are you ready to join? What is your availability? What is wrong with the call? This is OK. The recruiter is directly coming to the point, giving you all the information and is asking you whether you are ready to join or not. Right? Wrong. When you receive a marketing call, how do you feel? The recruiter is also selling you a position on a ship. There should always be a human touch for the calls. Otherwise, if it is going to be robotic, you can be rest assured, all the recruiters will be replaced by robots very soon.

We have around 15 points here, which we will go through and I will explain each point. What does each point mean and how you can follow this in your recruiting process?

1) Expect to recruit: This is talking about your mindset. How are you going to go into the call? You even expect to recruit the seafarer or you want to completely calling sheet? In that case you can be rest assured you need not make that call. You need to go into the call confident and have to be able to assure the candidate that you have something valuable for him. If you don’t expect to recruit ,the candidate will not get the confidence in you. It’s like an in visible energy which flows through the telephone to him.

2) Be Aggressive: As I always say, you are always recruiting for a single position at a time from a pool of may 100’s of seafarers. So, there should be one seafarer who is looking for a job, which you are offering. So, the difference is only how fast an you reach the seafarer. In case of junior officers maybe you can reach the correct candidate ,say after 20 calls ,however for senior ranks it is possible that you have to call 100 ,probable 200 seafarers before you reach the correct candidate. Hence the game is in the numbers. If you are able to make that many calls quickly ,you will get the candidate. Hence have a target for number of calls in a day based on the above and how badly you need the seafarer ,and try to achieve it. This could be one of the quickest methods to get suitable candidate.

3) Take notes: Taking notes is an excellent habit which most of the recruiters do not follow ,so that they can cover more calls. However, taking notes will reduce the duration of the next call you are going to make or for that matter anyone from your office who is having access to the notes and calling the seafarer will have the history of the seafarer .So immediately the calls changes from cold call to a warm call. Hence taking notes is very crucial in the overall scheme of things.

4) Have a script: Even though script is just a guide and may not be followed strictly, it acts as a wonderful checklist for all the information you need from the seafarer. It also channelises your communication and helps you in reducing the overall call duration. Script is a MUST.

5) Plan for tomorrow: Recruiters job not only involves calling but also involves other activities related to recruiting , like maybe checking documentation, making reports etc., which also takes time from your office hours. Hence you need to have the discipline to divide your time into slots for calling and other tasks to ensure ,other tasks do not eat into your calling time. Usually after lunch time are siesta time for senior officers after lunch and hence other tasks can be scheduled during that time.

6) Be positive: If the CV seems to suit your needs, and you see some negative remarks entered previously, it is possible that the seafarer’s requirements could have changed and we should always remember that the salary is not the only criteria for a candidate to join any organisation/ship. Hence you should always be positive that the candidate may have a different requirement this time and may join you. Again, the invisible energy flows to the candidate through the phone.

7) Too many follow ups: Follow ups are good however too many follow ups without intervals can also put off the candidate. This shows 1) we are too desperate 2) We do not care for his thought process 3) He may feel the decision to join is being forced upon him. View the above, the candidate can back out as well.

8) Seek guidance: If you are not sure of some information, always tell the candidate that you will check and revert and do not give a reply which you think may be the correct one. Even a small mis information can create doubts in the seafarer’s mind and that is the last thing we want when we have found the correct candidate for our requirement.

9) Keep cool: Some candidates at times ,may not be at their best moods while you call and hence you may feel the brunt of it. As with any cold call, it is always possible that the candidate could be rude some times. Keeping your cool will take you longer as you ultimately would need him if his experience is good. Give the seafarer ,the benefit of doubt and end the call amicably. Also put a note to that effect for future reference.

10) In Person better: Even though calling a seafarer is the 2nd best method for interacting with candidates, meeting in person is always great for both the sides. From your perspective 1) you can physically see the candidate for his overall physical fitness(BMI etc) 2) it shows the commitment from the seafarer side if he has taken the efforts to come to the office. Always request candidates if they can visit office for a meeting, if the seafarer is in the same city as the office.

11) Follow up: Following up with the seafarer till he joins the vessel is very important. It can with on your vessel or in another company. 1st- if he is joining your vessel, the seafarer will be very comfortable with you and hence if any issues ,he is more likely to share it with you.2) If he is joining another company, there is always possibilities of delays, or other reasons where seafarer could back out and be available for you.

12) Commitments: It is possible that sometimes you could commit few additional terms as per seafarer requirements to convince him to join your vessel and it is fine ,however all the commitments should be in written form and signed by both parties. Verbal commitments can be misleading and is open to interpretations at a later date. Very small commitments also should be documented for clarity and process.

13) Unproductive calls: With the huge number of calls ,there is bound to be few calls which may be un productive like ,you are not able to talk to the candidate ,the phone was switched off etc. which cannot be helped. However, putting in remarks in the software/excel will assist you in reducing the unproductive calls to the minimum. Our target should be maximising the number of successful calls to reach the suitable candidate fastest.

14) Family of the candidate: The recruiter’s job as I mentioned EARLIER is of the human connection and a very long one in that. Hence if you really care about the seafarer, you need to have that care for his family as well .Even if the seafarer has joined a ship of another company, you can always give a cutesy call to the family to check on their wellbeing. Do not ask when the seafarer will be back home during these calls. The call was for the family and let it be that way.


Relationship of recruiter and the candidates especially in case of seafarers is to be considered beyond the limits of the company or nationality but a long-term relationship like partners as both the parties need each other. Hence look at recruiting not as a short time job but a long-time commitment. Happy recruiting!!

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