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How to Hire Experienced Offshore Wind Talent to Support Growth

  • Written by Mike Tann
  • 24/04/2023
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As the UK’s offshore wind production approaches 100GW, the number of job positions posted on a day-to-day basis is rapidly escalating to a rate that’s difficult to keep up with. 

However, failure is not an option. 

If energy organisations like Orsted and EDF Renewables want to continue taking advantage of the opportunities opening up across the country, they need to ensure that all gaps are filled with qualified and knowledgeable workers.

The Challenges Facing Hiring Managers in Offshore Wind

Sadly, this is not going to be an easy accomplishment. 

According to the ONS, electricity generation from wind power in the UK has increased by 715% from 2009 to 2020. Three years later, the growth is still ongoing.

While the existing projects aren’t all solely offshore, each one is dipping into the same talent pool – stretching our human resources to the limit.

This overwhelming demand combined with the ongoing offshore wind skill and talent shortage puts company recruiters in an incredibly tricky place. The odds are stacked against them.

The Need for Experienced Talent to Support Offshore Wind Growth 

The reality is that, without a consistent and high-quality supply of talent, the offshore wind industry is not going to be able to sustain its current level of growth. 

Projects will be understaffed, deadlines will be stretched, and investment in the industry will eventually dwindle.

To combat this, offshore wind leaders need to be particularly intelligent with their recruitment… securing qualified and experienced individuals through:

  1. Fine-tuned social recruitment.
  2. Wide and ongoing networking.
  3. Well-funded recruitment campaigns.
  4. Extensive internal learning and development.

This could rescue them from the brink of a crisis.

Where Can We Find Experienced Talent for Offshore Wind?

Alongside looking to progress eager staff members up the career ladder, the offshore wind industry critically needs to expand its talent search.

It would be in every organisation’s best interest to consider ways to connect with employees in fields with directly transferable skills, such as:

  1. Oil
  2. Gas
  3. Navy
  4. Rail
  5. Construction
  6. Manufacturing
  7. Transport
  8. Power
  9. Mining

Due to the similarities, individuals with a background in any of these industries would be well suited for the challenging demands of offshore wind. Candidates will be hard and dedicated workers, with a keen eye for detail and impressive problem-solving capabilities.

What’s not to love?

How to Successfully Transition Talent into Offshore Wind

Still, that doesn’t mean a job offer can be extended and the work is done. Human Resource Managers need to avoid making the mistake of losing talent due to a lack of support.

Moving from one industry to another can be challenging for any employee, but it’ll feel especially difficult when they are working offshore for the first time.

We can’t instantly assume that, because of someone’s past experience and numerous qualifications, they’ll be able to “fit right in” and hit the ground running. 

Training has to be provided.

Step 1. Create an Extensive Onboarding Strategy

Any individual coming from another sector will have around 80% of the skills that you’d like them to have. Being prepared and designing a detailed and clear onboarding process to follow during their first few months will allow you to shape them into the perfect candidate. 

Step 2. Provide In-Depth Training

As a part of this, you need to make sure that you are providing the right level of training to the hire as they settle into their new role. You don’t want to make them feel micromanaged and untrusted, but you also can’t leave them without any support at all. 

Step 3. Assign Mentors 

Luckily, one of the best ways to allow your hire to seek additional guidance only when they need it is to assign a mentor. This feels less invasive than having leadership constantly monitoring the work they do, but still gives them a channel to ask questions and queries.

Step 4. Use Contractors During Enlistment

When you are filling a position where there is urgent work to be done on a deadline, consider partnering with a contractor as you take the time to train your new employee. This way, they won’t be overwhelmed with work while they are still settling in.

Step 5. Offer Emotional Guidance

Even though most local placements will only be on a 2-week rotation, our industry can still feel isolating for an employee who is entering an unfamiliar work environment. Being present and supportive during their transition will help them thrive.

The Importance of a Well-Planned Onboarding Process

As the offshore wind industry becomes more and more dynamic, it’ll be harder for new employees to find their feet. 

It’s your job to guide them through uncertainty and provide each hire with the right tools to easily transition into their new role.

Without this extra level of dedication and care, your organisation risks losing its best candidates before they’ve come to realise just how rewarding the offshore industry can be. 

By putting the right procedures into place, you’ll be able to secure and retain experienced talent long into the future – transforming the future of your company. 

Finding and Retaining Experienced Talent through Select Offshore 

Select Offshore is a team of specialist recruiters that deliver reliable, communicative, and enthusiastic maritime professionals.

Is that you?

If you’re looking for exciting and competitive placements across any of our sectors, speak to us.

We can connect you with a company that cares for its human resources and recognises the importance of adhering to your rights.

Our team strongly believes in celebrating each of the individuals we work with, dedicating time to find them desirable offshore placements. 

Contact us today to find out more.

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