Career of Electro Technical Officer on Ship

Having chosen a marine career (good choice!) as your field of work, here is some information to help make your search wider. You are determined to find a job at sea then we offer you a suitable option for that- an electro technical officer.

An electro technical officer is one of the most important people on a vessel, especially when it comes to his/her expertise of handling electrical equipment of the vessel.

For those who are interested in maritime jobs, a ship officer handling the electrical supervision of the vessel can be a suitable career choice. As an electro technical officer, your main duty would be to ensure functioning and maintenance of electrical equipments on vessel.

Electro Technical Officer

What does an electro technical officer do?

An electro technical officer handles several responsibilities on vessel mainly related to electrical systems. Like most jobs at sea, as a ship officer handling electronics on a vessel, you are most likely to work under a chief engineer who supervises everything on a ship. And while under a chief engineer, your ship jobs would include the following things.

  • Maintenance and working of electrical equipments on board
  • Working of electrical parts like engine rooms, radio communications, electronic navigation needs like echo sounders, Gyro compass, Weather Fax, auto pilot, RADAR system, Broadcast and internal aerial system, telephone and talk back system and satellite communications
  • Look into basic electric needs like refrigeration, bridge systems and control rooms
  • Maintenance of emergency systems including emergency switches, fire alarms and detectors
  • Vessel’s electrical components like navigational lights, battery backups and electrically operated propelling machinery
  • Assist chief officer in handling routine works especially related to electrical handling
  • Coordinate work with on shore technicians
  • During emergencies, an electrical officer plays important role like every other ship officer. You would be required to handle the emergency situations and ensure all the equipment needed for safety is always ready
  • An electro technical officer looks into electrical and technical aspects on a vessel. Hence working of computer controlled machinery would be supervised by an ETO.
  • An electrical officer is immensely important on cruise ships and passenger vessels which have huge electrical requirements and unmanned technology handling them. Everything from refrigeration to air conditioning on such vessels would come under your supervision as an electro technical officer. 

What are the knowledge and skills needed to be an ETO?

An ETO can be seen as a higher version of anelectrical officer. The qualifications and qualities needed to become an ETO are

  • A foundation degree in electrical/engineering/electrical engineering/marine engineering  field
  • An electrical engineering degree- a minimum Bachelor’s level qualification
  • Electro technical training like STCW 95 basic safety training course including fire fighting, fire prevention, elementary first aid course training
  • ENG1’ seafarer’s medical certificate and/or certification for physical and mental fitness
  • Training for handling electrical, navigational and communication equipment
  • A course in Electro Technical engineering (optional but not necessary but may come as an added advantage)
  • As Per New STCW-2010 Manila amendments, Elector technical officer has to obtain certificate of competency from Maritime Authorities  by applying for exams conducted by them.

Besides a simple Bachelor’s degree in engineering, as an aspirant of an ETO post, you can also take up additional short term diploma courses of full Bachelor’s courses dealing with electro technical handling and maintenance. Besides these qualifications, for a person seeking careers at sea, you must possess following qualities too.

  • Physical strength to handle heavy duty on board work
  • Mental fitness
  • Ability to stay away from family for long intervals
  • Ability to work under pressure
  • Ability to handle practical situations
  • Independent decision making capacity
  • Task prioritization and organization
  • Ability to keep calm and not panic under emergency situations
  • To be able to work under a senior while maintaining a team of your own
  • Flair for circuits and wires ( a must) 

What is tentative remuneration?

Like most jobs at sea, the salary of an ETO greatly varies with the experience you own, the kind of responsibilities you handle and the rank that you work on. However, even with so many variables, ETO remains a highly paying job among all careers at sea. As an ETO, you can expect a salary of $3000 to $5400 per month. Those working on bigger cruise ships can expect even up to $10000 per month depending on the size of the cruise ship and the duties handled.

The biggest advantage with this particular option among all maritime jobs is that it is a new field. Since electrical aspect and IT on vessels has combined on recently, not many people have been duly trained to handle them both together. With increasing need for such people, there are immense opportunities for people to make use of their knowledge and skills. Work handled by an electrical officer now needs expertise of an ETO now. Considering that, it seems viable that this option among all marine careers should be seen as a highly lucrative choice by most mariners.

References: sstg , maritimeskills

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  1. You forgot to mention there is no promotion available for this kind of officer,so no salary increase during your life time as others do.

  2. @ Martin: Yes. This post does not have any promotion aspects but there will be salary rise as per the industry standards but not like engineers or deck officers who will be getting salary as per their promotion.

  3. Electrical Officer is most degraded Job on Merchant Vessel .He undertakes job may be slightly less than an oiler.Full career he is doing operational level unlike the other engineer who barely know Electrical /Electronic sits on top as Chief Engineer .The present Manila amendments dosen’ do anything good for the Electrical officer .The designation changed and more lengthy process to get struck in that job .So I would say that Electrical Officer /ETO doesn’t offer a career progression. So aspiring person who like to join Merchant navy look for a Mariner Engineer ladder and not Electrical ladder .

  4. Dear Sir, Good Day.
    I am Mohammad Abdullah Electrical Engineer Bangladeshi looking for suitable ETO / Electrical Engineer Jobs .

    I have 16 years working experience in Bangladesh Navy.
    and 8 years working Experience on Zamil Offshore Service CO in Saudi Arabia as a ETO / Electrical Engineer.
    Your Response and Reply will be highly appreciated.

    Thanks and Best Regards.

    Mohammad Abdullah
    Mobile- 0088 01864799971



  6. i have recently cleared exam to get trained for ETO in Anglo Eastern maritime academy.i have doubt whether or not to join the training,which involves lot of money.

  7. Dear Sir
    I’m marine chief electrical engineer with more than 10 years experience in M/V , offshore construction vessel’s, I have CDC, medical certificates, Bachelor in electrical engineering & …
    please advice hove can get ETO certificates

  8. hello sir i am DEEE WITH 90% ,i have a an 4 years asst electrical supervisor in ROTARY CO,LTD. IN SAUDI ARABIA,i want to work in shipping electrical department ,so i what to do sir?

  9. Sir may i joine E.T.O ,iam B.Tech Electronics communication Engineering please explaine about ability and qualification

  10. ETO are the best when it comes to electrical troubleshooting and prevention of damages. Unlikely chief engineers hiding problems until someone get injured or the damage is too big to be handled simply because they don’t want to show their weakness in competence and do not understand in full the electrical theory. ETO should take major decisions onboard on the electrical side in agreement with chief engineer and not being subordinate, that’s why he is onboard.
    It will be always too late until IMO recognize that ETO carrier is no different from the engineers career because the have the same technical background and study and spend the same time at sea!!!!!

  11. Hello,

    do not take ETO route:
    they pay you next to nothing, expect you to troubleshoot every system that is moved by signals/sdensors/electrons ….on board with no help whatsoever. You are left alone.

    and then dump you like a garbage when the technology progresses and they will double the systems like on an aircraft to cut costs on wages.

    believe me, shipping industry is very very short sighted, and least considerate to the human being

    exemple of technological redundancy is th on board Radio Officers. Those technicians were very qualified in electronics, and the industry did not manage to retrain by simply update a little with the high voltage electrical systems/generators in the engine room and some CPU controllers update.

    I am current ETO officer that knows what he is talking about.

    Good luck and choose a shore based industry.

  12. My Dream Is to joint merchant nevy, But As i am ECE Engineer so i have only option Is Electro Technical Officer (ETO).

    What Was the Future Of Electro Technical Officer (ETO), Like Promotion,Salary etc?

  13. Maritime jabs in eto work is very entelijent job how on depend all electrical engineer & I like this work
    It is a very good work

  14. I am a electrical engineer with 6 year experience in electrical maintenance plant level.
    Now I want to join cruise jobs as a electrical officer.
    How can I get this job.
    Please help……

  15. We in this part of the world with ETO certificates are NOT well taking care of in terms of PAY after spending big money for the course at schools out of Nigeria WHY,WHY and WHY please we need help from you all.

  16. Iam a eto worked in ship now coc is required to sail is there is anyother way or vaccy as electrician kindly plz help india kerala 0091 9447500918

  17. ETO doesn’t have any promotion you have to work in the same rank until your retirement period.


  19. @Vishnu: You will be joining as a trainee ETO with a salary (or better call it stipend) between 200- 600 usd.

  20. Is it possible to join as a deck officer …I completed my diploma EEE with 82%…if it’s is possible .. please tell me how?

  21. Sir, Personally I’m very much interested to join ETO, but while watching videos on YouTube and listening to some comment ,I’m getting confused, and I need to apply for lone is it ok to do ETO by taking lone ,
    Plz help me.

  22. Hello sire , I need to know something, if anyone join bulk carrier as trainee ETO , after completion of 12 months , can i shifted my job to Oil tanker or LNG ?

  23. @Prajwal: Job market is not that great as of now. There is no harm in doing the ETO course as ET officers are required onboard ship.

  24. Sir, Government had issued notice to the institution that, their responsibility to provide 100% jobs for their student. Is it true news? and how seriously institutions follow it.

  25. Hello… Thanks for letting us know about it. Unfortunately, we are not aware of the same. You can check the official government website for the same. Thanks.

  26. I whant to know what is salary of Eto in dp much it good to shif Marine vessel do vessel

  27. Sir i want to know how to get a E.T.O license im graduate a bachelor of science industrial technology major in electrical sir 4yrs.grad. sir

  28. @Dickson: You need to apply for a 4 months E.T.O course as you are eligible with the given background.

  29. Dear Career makers !!!

    today’s date much more job shortage and cadets are comes in this merchant navy line, special ETO,GME Batches, don’t joint merchant navy career. The Bachelor & post graduated holders are comes to here with much more career hopes & they are also invested lots of money in this line, sometimes for middle class family that much of money is not affordable,but due to fake agents easily traps to aspirants/students regards job prospectus & unnecessarily agents also takes money from it. also agents are gives much more sailing waiting period for that cadet, those gay’s whose expended total money & age of career.

  30. HI, can I join cruise ships after completing ETO course and not container ships… I finished my EEE in engineering. Also which is the best collg in South India to join ETO course? What is the career scope after 3years in this field?

  31. Helo sir iam working as a assistant refrigeration engineer in cruise ship i have 9 years in this field is that possible to to do eto caurce i did air conditioning and refrigeration diploma caurce

  32. @Chiranjeevi: Cruise ship companies will only take experienced ETOs. It will be difficult to get into a cruise shipping company.
    You will be joining as a trainee ETO and post 3 years you will be working as Sr. ETO.

  33. @Nidheesh: No, he/she cannot. However, an ETO can shift to engine department by applying for Class IV exams to become a 4th engineer. After that, you can proceed on a career of a marine engineer to become chief engineer.

  34. You will be joining as Trainee ETO and after a certain experience, you will be promoted to ETO.
    ETO is the only and the highest position on the ship for an electrical officer.

  35. I’m from the field of Instrumentation and control engineering.Is it possible for me to undertake ETO course?

  36. May cousin is a license electrical engineer on the vessel. It is posible he is apply for to be a captain of the ship? Even he ddnt study a marine transportion course but he has working as a ETO. In merchant vessel. Thnx in advance if ever you ever you answering my question

  37. @Manoj: entirely depend on your career interest. even if you become successful ETO, but do not enjoy the job, I will not consider it as a long term option.
    Practically, the job market is yet to improve for a new joiner (be it engineer, deck officer or electrical engineer)

  38. Hello
    I am nitin grover, basically from india. Currently pursuing MBA in Canada. I have taken bachelors of electronics and communication in 2010.
    After that i have 2 years experience in translink metro as project engineer in india.
    Then i joined merchant navy as electrical officer for 5 years with reputed company.
    Further i moved to Canada for higher studies.
    I have done ETO course from india and STCW courses.
    Now i am looking for shipping jobs in canada.
    Can someone guide me how and where can i apply for job in shipping industry to continue my career in same field in canada.


  39. Which institute is better for eto according to you ?
    which give 100% placement after complextion?
    Eligibility creteria of eto?

  40. Sir, I have 2 years job experience in DG systems …will it help me to get high pay job if I go for merchant Navy course now?

  41. @Saurabh: You need to have a CDC to get a job on the ship. Also, you need to fulfill the age criteria too. Looking at the job market, it is very difficult for a fresh marine engineer or deck officer to get job on ship.

  42. I want to join Trainee ETO AT cruise ship. Is it a better option than Cargo ship . What are the salary of ETO on cruise.

  43. Sir I got 67% in 12 but in PCM only 48 % and completed in electronics instrumentation with 65 % so I am eligible or not. And in maths 33% in 12th.

  44. @Ahamad Khan: It will be extremely difficult to get a trainee job on a cruise ship. You need to complete your training in a cargo ship. For entry-level, there ain’t any difference.

  45. sir I’m completed grd after completion of eto course u will provide 100% placement for me.or give me suggestions how to get placement as traine ero

  46. Sir I completed my diploma in EEE 3 years course with 74%.
    Now I want to join in marian as eto.
    So I have to complete the 4 months course in eto .
    What is the fee for 4monts course.

  47. @Harish: You are eligible to join the 4 months ETO course to become a certified ETO and work on the ship. The fee may vary depending upon the college/ institution and may go up to INR 3,00,000 /-

  48. Sir i have completed diploma in EE 3years can i join the Eto course…. I have called a lot of colleges all are saying degree is needed to join the eto course

  49. @Prajjal: HIMT Chennai does accept diploma as per their eligibility requirement. Google search HIMT ETO for more details

  50. sir i have completed b.e in electrical engineering. my age is 31 i wants to join merchant navy as eto.
    is there would be any problem about age in future for permotion. and which college is better for placement. what about the placement in tmc shipping college after eto course….

  51. Kullai: Depends on the company you join. As you will be joining as trainee ETO first, you will be earning USD 200-500.

  52. Hi I am IT I fitter also done apprentice ship Nctvt ship repair companies I have indian cdc with stew certificate. How can I get job in marchant navy.

  53. I done ETO Course Secured with 68% I Went Bombay to search job around 2 Months I stayed there went around 80+ Companies Reputed companies are not hiring fresher and some companies are asking Money…I don’t have money to pay them.. I’m feel depressed now I wanted to move on field job it’s better to move or I can barrow money and pay to agents to get job in Marine filed… Guid me plz sir…

  54. Hello, I’m still a student taking Bs Electrical Engineering. I found this ETO career very interesting. Is it possible for a fresh grad student to be an ETO? or do I still need an onboard experience first?

  55. @Ajay: The seafaring industry is going through a hard time in terms of jobs and freshers are most hard hit by it. The wise option would be to find an alternative job for the time being and continue searching for the ETO jobs side by side.

  56. Yey: You need an onboard experience as Trainee ETO along with Certificate of Competency for ETO.

  57. Sir, i hv completed diploma in mechatronics .. am i eligible for ETO Course

  58. Sir, I completed my in EEE and have an experience of 3 years in my field. Now i wanted to switch so i thought of joinining eto course. will it be helpful? Am i going to get any benefit of my experience? Or getting a sponsorship will make any difference?

  59. @Sandeep”” You are eligible to join the ETO course. Your experience will help you understand the field. Sponsorship is important looking at the current job scenario as freshers are not getting jobs and they are kept in waiting for more than a year to get the ship experience.

  60. Sir, i have completed my 12th with 50% and diploma in electronic and telecomm with 75% and BE in electronic and telecomm( with a gap year with 55 % am i eligible for the ETO course ?
    And if yes what are the job prospect after completing the course ?

  61. Hye, i had finish my study in bachelor marine in electric and electronic tech.. and i have a cert ssa, bt, btoct, dsd, and bsom.. what type of ship can i joint? And can u suggest a best company for me to start my new job? 🙂

  62. @Nassie: You also need to do basic STCW training courses. You can join any type of ship which needs ETO on ships.

  63. Hai sir i completed my diploma in electronics and communication engineering i eligible for eto course ?

  64. Most Filipino Electro Technical Officers are actually Electrical Engineers and Electronic Communication Engineers But before we can get certified as Electro Technical Officer at MARITIME INDUSTRY AUTHORITY here in Philippines, They require a lot of training’s for ETO. WAKE UP ALL ETO, We are educated during our college degrees, we studied Bachelor of Science in Engineering, we studied a lot from Electrical Engineering but these does not credit on our Marine Profession. And what sucks most even English course are included for the very expensive training’s , why won’t they evaluate and compare ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING CURRICULUM to lessen the gap in marine electrical profession. We already studied controls and instrumentation, motor design, electrical designs, programmable logic control and etc. We studied Electrical Engineering for Five years and our diploma and License as Engineers must be credited on board.

  65. Sir I have completed 4 months eto training from BP MARINE Belapur
    Any vacancies for Trainee ETO??

  66. sir i’ve a degree in electrical and electronics eng. what should i do next if i have to pursue this career

  67. You need to take courses for STCW certification. Few institute provides training to get the required qualification.

  68. Sir, I have C&G levels 1,2 &3 respectively in Electrical Engineering.

    Can put in for ETO.?

  69. I have done my B. Tech in 2012 and my age is 30
    Can I join marchant navy as eto

  70. I really appreciate you for publishing this blog here; it’s really a helpful and very useful for us. This is really appreciated that you have presented this data over here, I love all the information shared. Great article!

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