It’s a big step, and one that requires total commitment, but the returns can be substantial and subsea work can offer an exciting and rewarding career.
It’s a career that can take you to all four corners of the world – working in locations as diverse as the North Sea, the Indian Ocean or off the coast of Africa. And if you would prefer to work closer to home, you can choose to focus on inshore work instead. The oil and gas industry is currently the single largest employer in the subsea sector, and over the next decade massive developments, which are already in place, will create a large volume of employment in the offshore renewables sector. This means that there will continue to be a demand for offshore personnel including divers, ROV pilots and Life Support Technicians (LSTs).
With expansion in the oil and gas sector and new developments in offshore wind farms, there is continued demand for divers. This can be a tough job physically and emotionally, but for those who want a challenge, commercial diving can be an exciting and very rewarding career.
At the start of their careers, most divers will build initial experience with inshore diving work before making the move to better paid jobs offshore. Many divers start with civil engineering jobs, working on harbours, dams and inland waterways. There are also opportunities in areas such as the media, scientific and archaeological diving, inshore construction and scallop diving.
Getting your first job…
Getting your first job will be the hardest part, as you will still need to gain work experience, however the more vocational skills you have to offer employers, the easier it is to get your foot on the first rung of the ladder. At The Underwater Centre, we offer key career packages which include crucial industry skills training, check out our courses pages to find out more about the range of additional skills we offer. By training at The Underwater Centre you will also receive vital additional time in the water; significantly more than at some other schools, providing you with valuable extra experience.
Pay rates can begin at £100 per day when you first start, for unskilled work. After gaining sufficient experience as an air diver you can return to complete Closed Bell training and become a saturation diver. Salary rates for skilled mixed gas divers working offshore are over £1000 per day.