Radio Officers Job OnBoard Ships

The radio officers job onboard ships, unlike any other, involves sailing on-board sea ferrying vessels like navy vessels or private ships and boats in the open ocean or seas to do this job you requires a basic level of education minimal graduate and to do a written examination that is conducted to determine if the candidate is capable of doing the job. On completion of the written test the candidate is trained on how to use, operate, maintain and repair communication equipment aboard ships and boats. On completion of the test and training he is certified. This certification is expected to be updated as there are ever-changing advances in communication technology as there is in computer technology.

The radio officer plays a critical part in the operation of the ship even though he is hardly mentioned and few people now about him. He plays a critical part and is in charge of keeping in contact with mainland, ports and other ships, weather report and other vital information that may be required. He is also in charge of checking all radio frequencies in case of any distress calls (s.o.s). He is also in charge of checking the depth of the ship using sonar and radar frequencies. His job seems to be very insignificant but that’s not the case. His importance can be expressed by taking an example of a submarine. They work under water and do not have any view of there surroundings when submerged. So it is fully dependant on sonar and radar which tells the captain of his surroundings and location. Since submarines cannot communicate very effectively under water they have to surface to maintain contact with head quarters. Only extremely low frequencies can work under water that is capable of traveling over long distances. These frequencies very and it is the radio officer’s job to maintain contact, there for he has to maintain or find the right frequency.

To qualify for this job there are a few requirement you need the comply with these are – the candidate has to be a least graduate

– He /she need to be between 18 and 22 years.

– Single (not married).

– Physically fit.

– Height minimum of 5ft or 150cm is required.

-Eye sight only perfect eyesight is acceptable with no color blindness (source 1)

Besides these the person has to posses some other qualities in this field. These are:

  • Dedication- the person has to be dedicated to his job as there should be no room for error. This job requires the aspirant to live out at sea for long periods which could give a person home sickness thus affecting his work and compromising the security of his vessel.


  • Bravery– this quality is a requirement in both the navy and commercial fields as unforeseen circumstances may arise when fear may take the better of us due to war or weather.


  • Hard working– as in any field only hard work paves the way to our success.


  • Intelligent and idealistic– he should be capable of his job in any condition weather normal or in hostile situations and should be fast thinking and creative in situation that may be difficult.


  • Co-operation– this quality is a requirement in all jobs. No one can work on his own and we should be able to work as a team


  • Flexibility and patience– on board a ship we can not restrict our selves to doing one thing but should be ready to work on any job that requires our help at any moment and patience plays its role thru time we spend out at sea if we don’t have patient this job doesn’t fit your description.


Salary earnings vary depending on your rank and if it is navy or a private company. Accommodation, food, and health related problems are provided on board. Hygienic Food and sanitation are also maintained on board to check and maintain the living standards of all sea men. The age for retirement for a radio officer also depends if he works in navy or in the private sector. But with the UNITED NATIONS the maximum age is 60-62 years (sources 1)

All this hard work comes with sacrifice as well as good fortune. Many officers who worked on board ships have to sacrifice family life and modern living trends as they are left isolated out at sea for long periods of time. They also lack adequate social life and are constricted among the few people that work on board but on the other hand there are benefits to this also. Large pension plans and retirement plans are offered to officer who have given there service to this line. Many sailors visit many different counties through out there careers and enjoy benefits that normal people would only dream to have. Every job needs dedication and as long as we are willing to do it the sky in the limit nothing can stop us.

With developments it technology in today’s world this job has lost its demand unlike in the past. Most of the work onboard is done directly through powerful computers and satellites. The job still exists but has lost fame in the modern sea vessels.

List of references


1, United Nations retirement ages http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2002/GAAB3497.doc.htm

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