Robust screening limits the chances of onboard crew clashes

Occasional workplace arguments are inevitable. Teamwork takes time to build and sometimes colleagues clash when their opinions vary. At sea is no different – except that seafarers don’t get to go home at 5pm to escape any office politics!

At Danica we sometimes get asked whether our seafarers get on ok when working in such close proximity and are pleased to report that they do. Recently we’ve had questions about whether our Russian and Ukrainian crew are clashing. The answer is a strong “no”.

Danica Managing Director Henrik Jensen advises: “We rarely have politically-based conflicts onboard vessels. Out of the 1,800 crews of mixed Ukrainian and Russian nationalities which Danica deploys we have an average of 1-2 arguments a year. In fact our crewing managers report that they have not heard of any cases for a long time.”

As Mr Jensen points out, seafarers are fundamentally no different to their shore-based colleagues, demonstrating the same concerns, sensitivities and worries as office staff.

“Having worked in crew deployment for more than 20 years, I always say that people who want to argue with each other will find something to get in a conflict over! I think we are fortunate to have low levels of arguments among Danica crews thanks to our
strict screening processes which routinely include checks on applicants’ social media for any extremist posts or other activity which could indicate potential problems when onboard, including racism or sexual harassment.”

All of Danica’s recruits undergo a comprehensive screening process to ensure they have the right personality for the role. In addition, Danica provides leadership courses to enable its senior officers to develop their communication and interpersonal skills.

Danica specialises in the supply of eastern European and Russian seafarers and we have seen a marked rise in enquiries for our officers and crew during the pandemic as ship owners sought replacements for seafarers unable to travel from traditional supply areas like the Philippines. Mr Jensen comments: “We receive many enquiries from ship owners looking to diversify their crew pools as a risk precaution following lessons learned from the Covid-19 pandemic.”

As the Russian-Ukrainian conflict, which dates back to 2014, develops, Danica is carefully monitoring the situation and has in place contingency plans to ensure continuity of service for its maritime clients.

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