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Sourcing Reliable Contractors to Build Offshore Wind Farms

  • Written by Sophie Smith
  • 10/03/2022
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The world is facing a global energy crisis.

As prices surge, the private and public markets have begun to scrabble for solutions and, by 2030, offshore wind farm investment is expected to reach £650 billion (Source: Eco Generation).

For stakeholders not operating in the sector, it seems simple enough to rely on turning wind into energy when we already have the technology to do so. 

However, there is a downside: there aren’t enough workers, especially qualified leaders, in the industry to meet a sudden surge in demand. (Source: Select Offshore)

(Source: Bloomberg NEF).

The difficulty of offshore recruitment

The desperate need for the development of wind farms places pressure on the industry’s available human resources.

Over time, the change in working expectations has pushed talent into contracting positions – where they can move from one position to another with different employers, benefiting from high flexibility and strong hourly rates. Now, companies have to face the facts: in our current recruitment climate, making long-term hiring decisions to foster future growth will be an incredibly difficult undertaking.

As the labour shortage continues to grow, the last thing hiring managers want to encounter is to identify and onboard unsuitable candidates who are disruptive and unreliable.

The importance of sourcing reliable contractors

Choosing the wrong employee can cost a business roughly 30% of their first-year salary (Source: Northwestern EDU), but, for contracting, the problem is so much worse.

Not having talent with the essential qualifications can cause significant legal issues, and put businesses under threat. Before, companies could ensure their employees were properly trained, but now they have to rely on contractors to be telling the truth.

As a result of someone’s dishonesty or mismanagement, operations can quickly fall behind schedule and deadlines get missed. 

When the construction of an offshore wind farm is well underway, a contractor that can’t complete a job or show up on time places extra pressure on existing teams.


What’s the solution?

Companies looking to guarantee the smooth sailing of individual projects need to prioritise one personality trait above all others in their recruitment efforts: reliability. 

A contractor who is dependable, trustworthy and sincere in their efforts to show up to work and give their best every day is one that will make a difference to a business’s overall success, no matter the role.

(Source: Croner-I).

How to hire reliable offshore contractors

The development, planning and construction of offshore wind farms can span from 6-10 years (Source: Star of the South).

So, to keep costs low and continue meeting demand despite a lack of full-time talent, hiring managers must prioritise finding suitable contractors.

Step 1: Recruit extensively

To attract industry-leading contractors to projects, job listings need to be clear and persuasive, and capable of reaching a large audience.

For the best chance to select a reliable contractor, ensure the salary and benefits you are offering are in line with industry standards (or even above). Trust goes both ways, and quality talent will be looking for a competitive and rewarding position with a well-reputed employer. 

Step 2: Review CVs 

In-depth CV analysis is an obvious but necessary step in sourcing reliable offshore contractors. Look for warning signs such as:

  • Out-of-date qualifications
  • Incorrect licensing information
  • Long gaps between work placements
  • No references or testimonials provided
  • Unorthodox claims being made

This should give you a general idea of the contractor’s ability to commit to their work. When there’s a disparity between the information you requested in the job listing and the details you have been provided, be concerned. 

This demonstrates an unwillingness or incapability to follow orders. 

Step 3: Conduct background checks

The first and most important rule of thumb when choosing contractors is to always take the time to contact referees when they have been provided. Positive reviews will reassure you that contractors will be reliable in showing up and getting the work done. Aim to speak to past employers where possible, as they are likely to have an unbiased opinion and tell you the truth.

Step 4: Create a contract

When you’re confident you’ve selected reliable candidates, prepare a contract that outlines the working expectations you have for the contractor. If you are hiring for specialist and niche positions, expect the best contractors to ask queries and possibly negotiate on remuneration.

Step 5: Maintain communication

When you’ve made an agreement with a contractor, the work doesn’t stop there.

Another part of ensuring the reliability of your team is providing ongoing communications that update contractors about the start of a project and ongoing progress. This keeps them in the loop when they are away from work, and makes your success their success. 

Step 6: Work with a specialist recruiter

A national UK labour shortage of 1.1 million people (Source: The Guardian) has made sourcing and identifying qualified contractors increasingly more difficult. Offshore businesses have to recruit extensively, build their network and attract talent from other sectors – all of which is a lengthy and time-consuming process. 

That’s where Select Offshore comes in.

Our extensive, fully-vetted connections with thousands of talented offshore contractors allow us to fill positions with speed and provide experienced candidates for wind farm projects. 

When a new contractor wants to find placements through us, they go through an extensive approval process. Before sending them on an assignment, we like to know:

  1. What their key strengths are
  2. The core values they operate by

These factors typically influence their reliability. We’ve found that a contractor who aligns with the ethics and values of the company they are doing work for will be more willing to “step up to the plate and get the job done.”

Hire wind farm contractors through Select Offshore

Select Offshore delivers maritime professionals who are reliable, communicative, and enthusiastic. We adhere to tricky deadlines to secure project success through:

  1. Executive Search
  2. Contract Staffing
  3. RPO Solutions 

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

Is the next one with you? Contact us now.

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