What you need to work on board
The cruise lines are specific when it comes to the education, skills and experiences required in order to be hired for each particular job. As a new applicant looking for a cruise job, which skills are the most important to have and what training is required for cruise ship employment?
Cruise Ship Job Requirements
Before deciding what training is needed to get hired for a cruise job, you must understand the requirements of the cruise job you are applying for. Most employers have an unrealistic wish list of work experience, education and skills. It’s up to you to show them that you have the perfect blend.
You need to read between the lines of what is required. If they state that they would prefer two years of work experience and all you have is a formal education and one year work experience, it’s time to get creative with how you highlight your skills and experience.
On the other hand, if you have lots of work experience but little education, you need to prove that you know what you need to know. This is where you would highlight the skills acquired through work experience.
How to Get the Training Needed for Cruise Ship Jobs
The bottom line is you may already be qualified for the cruise job you want to apply for. Apart from a formal education, you can get training from even your work and life experiences. Understanding what you are trained to do by assessing your past work history and skills will give you an idea which cruise job to apply for.
In contrast, if you think your resume is lacking in comparison to what a cruise recruiter is looking for, then it’s time to consider getting additional training. You may not want, have the time, or money to go back to school full time. Instead, taking an evening community college course, an online course or even learning a new skill on your own is a great way to beef up your resume.
Develop Your Hard Skills for Cruise Jobs
As discussed in the article Cruise Ships Jobs and No Experience, there are a number of hard skills that can help you get hired to work on a cruise ship. Some of the most important of these skills are customer service skills, sales skills, and computer skills.
You want to highlight to a recruiter that you have these sought-after skills and have specific knowledge that is required according to a job description. Then again, the job description may not be so descriptive. You may have to decipher the additional skills that you think it takes to do the job.
For example, a job description for an assistant waiter or buffet steward may only describe the position as cleaning and setting tables or serving guests. To get more specific, a resume for this position could also mention skills such as “Experience in providing Silver Service” and “Knowledge of wine pairing”. This demonstrates to the recruiter that you really understand what the job is about.
Applicants for cruise jobs should consider getting additional training to develop their hard skills. Many courses are available at colleges as part of their continuing education or professional development programs. Some can even be completed in one day. Here is a list of the hard skills and potential courses that you could list on a resume, relevant to cruise jobs:
Customer Service Skills – Dealing with difficult customers training
Customer Service Skills – Servicing the retail customer
Sales Skills – Overcoming sales challenges
Sales Skills – Upsell and cross sell training
Management Skills – Time management skills
Management Skills – Leadership coaching
Management Skills – Effective problem solving
Business Presentation Skills
Computer Skills – MS Word
Computer Skills – MS Excel
Computer Skills – MS PowerPoint
Computer Skills – POS (Point of Sale) Training
Silver Service Training
Responsible Alcohol Service Training
Food and Wine Pairing Course
Wine Certificate Classes
Training in USPH (United States Public Health) or HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point)
CDC Vessel Sanitation certificate
Safe Food Handling Course
Microphone Techniques Course
Use Your Hobbies to Get a Cruise Job
You may be looking at a completely new career path than the one that has taken you to where you are today. It’s not uncommon to find cruise ship employees who may have started in the corporate world but have decided to work at sea instead. On the other hand, there are those perpetual students who have finally found their niche by taking a job on a cruise ship.
Converting a hobby into a career is just a matter of building your resume to reflect your hobby as a job. You may have a passion for photography and are quite good at it. Mix that with a knack for sales and you have an ideal cruise ship photographer. Same goes for that person that may have been achieving a high level as a PADI diver, get your PADI Dive Instructor certification and you can work on cruise ships.
Another example is the Cupcake Supervisor with Royal Caribbean. Who would have thought that a skill of decorating cupcakes along with sales management skills would be the makings of a cruise job? Or, if you have a passion for Mac and Apple products, there’s a job for you with Celebrity Cruises as an iLounge Macologist.