As a specialist in the maritime, shipping and energy recruitment sectors, we at Halcyon are very fortunate to be in possession of market data that is often out of the public domain.

We undertake a significant amount of salary benchmarking, on a client retained basis and for our own purposes. Recently, we have seen a considerable amount of activity in commercial operations positions and are regularly being asked what the current levels are in Singapore.

With an ongoing and increasing emphasis for local talent in Singapore, the following salary figures provide a guide for vessel operations positions.

Junior Operator – SGD 2,500 – SGD3,000 pcm
0 – 1 year of experience (maybe internship experience), or with no experience but relevant educational background.

Operator – SGD 2,800 – SGD 6,000 pcm
2 – 5 years of relevant commercial operations experience. Salary ranges affected by elements such as extension of responsibilities – whether involvement of pre- and post-fixture work, needing to do bunker purchasing, fleet size, complexity of cargoes, etc.

Senior Operator – SGD 5,800 – SGD 12,000 pcm
6 years and above of specific operations experience, along with likely additional responsibilities of:
(1) ability to handle potential disputes independently
(2) responsible for P&L of each voyage
(3) ad-hoc training and guiding of junior operators
(4) relationship building with clients / vendors

Operations Manager – SGD 10,000 and above
With leadership responsibility to guide and lead a small team of operators, added tasks to head initiatives such as:
(1) voyage optimization for the fleet
(2) centralized bunker hedging / purchasing
(3) claims handling, including legal – P&I cases
(4) other cost saving initiatives

When hiring ex-seafarers (ex-Masters in particular) salary ranges usually start from SGD 10,000 pcm upwards.

The salary guidelines provided above obviously do not take into account other crucial elements such as market sectors (wet tends to pay higher than dry for example) as well as variances like benefits packages and bonus payments.

When considering vessel operations roles, the market is a competitive one.
In order to be a strong contender, you need to be someone who seeks to identify opportunities to improve operational efficiencies and to improve revenue through cost savings as well as the standard operator responsibilities. A successful operator has an ability to minimise costs whilst maximising the revenue per voyage and need to demonstrate their ability to do this to any potential new employers.

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