Summary Report for:
53-5021.03 - Pilots, Ship
Command ships to steer them into and out of harbors, estuaries, straits, or sounds, or on rivers, lakes, or bays. Must be licensed by U.S. Coast Guard with limitations indicating class and tonnage of vessels for which license is valid and route and waters that may be piloted.
Sample of reported job titles: Boat Pilot, Docking Pilot, Harbor Pilot, Marine Pilot, Pilot, Relief Docking Master, River Pilot, Ship Pilot, State Pilot, Towboat Pilot
Tasks | Tools & Technology | Knowledge | Skills | Abilities | Work Activities | Detailed Work Activities | Work Context | Job Zone | Education | Credentials | Interests | Work Styles | Work Values | Related Occupations | Wages & Employment | Job Openings | Additional Information
- Set ships' courses that avoid reefs, outlying shoals, or other hazards, using navigational aids, such as lighthouses or buoys.
- Direct courses and speeds of ships, based on specialized knowledge of local winds, weather, water depths, tides, currents, and hazards.
- Steer ships into or out of berths or signal tugboat captains to berth or unberth ships.
- Prevent ships under their navigational control from engaging in unsafe operations.
- Consult maps, charts, weather reports, or navigation equipment to determine and direct ship movements.
- Give directions to crew members who are steering ships.
- Maintain ship logs.
- Serve as a vessel's docking master upon arrival at a port or when at a berth.
- Operate ship-to-shore radios to exchange information needed for ship operations.
- Provide assistance in maritime rescue operations.
- Provide assistance to vessels approaching or leaving seacoasts, navigating harbors, or docking and undocking.
- Report to appropriate authorities any violations of federal or state pilotage laws.
- Learn to operate new technology systems and procedures, through the use of instruction, simulators, or models.
- Advise ships' masters on harbor rules and customs procedures.
- Oversee cargo storage on or below decks.
- Relieve crew members on tugs or launches.
- Maintain or repair boats or equipment.
- Make nautical maps.
Tools & Technology
Tools used in this occupation:
- Anemometers — Wind gauges
- Binoculars — Surveillance binoculars
- Cargo or container ships — Bulk carriers; Container ships
- Cinch rescue loops — Rescue slings
- Cruise ships
- Depth gauges — Echo sounders
- Desktop computers
- Direction finding compasses — Navigational compasses
- Insulated clothing for cold environments — Thermal protective aids TPA
- Insulated or flotation suits — Immersion suits
- Ladders — Pilot ladders
- Life vests or preservers — Life jackets
- Manlift or personnel lift — Mechanical pilot hoists
- Marine craft communications systems — Ship-to-shore radios; Very high frequency VHF radiotelephone systems
- Notebook computers — Laptop computers
- Passenger or automobile ferries — Ferries
- Personal computers
- Radarbased surveillance systems — Shipboard radar
- Safety harnesses or belts — Safety harnesses
- Tankers — Chemical tankers; Oil tanker ships
- Tug boats — Tugboats
- Two way radios
- Vehicle navigation systems — Dynamic positioning DP systems; Electronic chart display and information systems ECDIS; Integrated bridge systems; Voyage management systems VMS (see all 5 examples)
- Vehicular global positioning system GPS — Differential global positioning satellite DGPS positioning systems; Global positioning systems GPS
Technology used in this occupation:
- Transportation — Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.
- Geography — Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.
- Public Safety and Security — Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
- Administration and Management — Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
- Mechanical — Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
- Law and Government — Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
- Customer and Personal Service — Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
- Telecommunications — Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.
- Computers and Electronics — Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
- Education and Training — Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
- Personnel and Human Resources — Knowledge of principles and procedures for personnel recruitment, selection, training, compensation and benefits, labor relations and negotiation, and personnel information systems.
- Operation and Control — Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
- Operation Monitoring — Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
- Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
- Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
- Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
- Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
- Time Management — Managing one's own time and the time of others.
- Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
- Management of Personnel Resources — Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.
- Quality Control Analysis — Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
- Service Orientation — Actively looking for ways to help people.
- Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
- Spatial Orientation — The ability to know your location in relation to the environment or to know where other objects are in relation to you.
- Far Vision — The ability to see details at a distance.
- Depth Perception — The ability to judge which of several objects is closer or farther away from you, or to judge the distance between you and an object.
- Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
- Glare Sensitivity — The ability to see objects in the presence of glare or bright lighting.
- Control Precision — The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
- Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
- Selective Attention — The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
- Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
- Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- Response Orientation — The ability to choose quickly between two or more movements in response to two or more different signals (lights, sounds, pictures). It includes the speed with which the correct response is started with the hand, foot, or other body part.
- Visual Color Discrimination — The ability to match or detect differences between colors, including shades of color and brightness.
- Flexibility of Closure — The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
- Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
- Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
- Peripheral Vision — The ability to see objects or movement of objects to one's side when the eyes are looking ahead.
- Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
- Time Sharing — The ability to shift back and forth between two or more activities or sources of information (such as speech, sounds, touch, or other sources).
- Visualization — The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
- Auditory Attention — The ability to focus on a single source of sound in the presence of other distracting sounds.
- Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
- Multilimb Coordination — The ability to coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion.
- Night Vision — The ability to see under low light conditions.
- Perceptual Speed — The ability to quickly and accurately compare similarities and differences among sets of letters, numbers, objects, pictures, or patterns. The things to be compared may be presented at the same time or one after the other. This ability also includes comparing a presented object with a remembered object.
- Rate Control — The ability to time your movements or the movement of a piece of equipment in anticipation of changes in the speed and/or direction of a moving object or scene.
- Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
- Arm-Hand Steadiness — The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
- Reaction Time — The ability to quickly respond (with the hand, finger, or foot) to a signal (sound, light, picture) when it appears.
- Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
- Hearing Sensitivity — The ability to detect or tell the differences between sounds that vary in pitch and loudness.
- Manual Dexterity — The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
- Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
- Finger Dexterity — The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
- Speed of Closure — The ability to quickly make sense of, combine, and organize information into meaningful patterns.
- Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
- Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment — Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.
- Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
- Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
- Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings — Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
- Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
- Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material — Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
- Controlling Machines and Processes — Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
- Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others — Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks.
- Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
- Communicating with Persons Outside Organization — Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
- Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information — Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.
- Developing and Building Teams — Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.
- Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
- Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards — Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
- Performing General Physical Activities — Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.
- Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
- Coaching and Developing Others — Identifying the developmental needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or otherwise helping others to improve their knowledge or skills.
- Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates — Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.
- Training and Teaching Others — Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
- Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People — Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.
- Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
Detailed Work Activities
- Choose optimal transportation routes or speeds.
- Notify others of emergencies, problems, or hazards.
- Assist others during emergencies.
- Operate ships or other watercraft.
- Communicate with others to coordinate vehicle movement.
- Operate communications equipment or systems.
- Direct passenger or freight transport activities.
- Read maps to determine routes.
- Explain regulations, policies, or procedures.
- Maintain professional knowledge or certifications.
- Record operational details of travel.
- Maintain watercraft engines or machinery.
- Monitor cargo area conditions.
- Face-to-Face Discussions — 96% responded “Every day.”
- Contact With Others — 76% responded “Constant contact with others.”
- Duration of Typical Work Week — 91% responded “More than 40 hours.”
- Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable — 78% responded “Every day.”
- Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 69% responded “Very important results.”
- Frequency of Decision Making — 76% responded “Every day.”
- Responsible for Others' Health and Safety — 68% responded “Very high responsibility.”
- Freedom to Make Decisions — 61% responded “A lot of freedom.”
- Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 68% responded “Extremely important.”
- Consequence of Error — 81% responded “Extremely serious.”
- Exposed to Contaminants — 58% responded “Every day.”
- Telephone — 76% responded “Every day.”
- Work With Work Group or Team — 71% responded “Extremely important.”
- Coordinate or Lead Others — 55% responded “Extremely important.”
- Structured versus Unstructured Work — 54% responded “A lot of freedom.”
- Wear Common Protective or Safety Equipment such as Safety Shoes, Glasses, Gloves, Hearing Protection, Hard Hats, or Life Jackets — 70% responded “Every day.”
- Responsibility for Outcomes and Results — 42% responded “Very high responsibility.”
- In an Enclosed Vehicle or Equipment — 61% responded “Every day.”
- Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — 60% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Time Pressure — 61% responded “Every day.”
- Extremely Bright or Inadequate Lighting — 50% responded “Every day.”
- Outdoors, Exposed to Weather — 51% responded “Every day.”
- Physical Proximity — 54% responded “Moderately close (at arm's length).”
- Level of Competition — 38% responded “Extremely competitive.”
- Electronic Mail — 52% responded “Every day.”
- Very Hot or Cold Temperatures — 37% responded “Every day.”
- Deal With External Customers — 38% responded “Extremely important.”
- Spend Time Standing — 39% responded “More than half the time.”
- Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People — 49% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
- Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 30% responded “Extremely important.”
- Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 58% responded “Every day.”
- Frequency of Conflict Situations — 29% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
- Exposed to Whole Body Vibration — 47% responded “Every day.”
- Exposed to Hazardous Conditions — 30% responded “Every day.”
|Title||Job Zone Three: Medium Preparation Needed|
|Education||Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.|
|Related Experience||Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, an electrician must have completed three or four years of apprenticeship or several years of vocational training, and often must have passed a licensing exam, in order to perform the job.|
|Job Training||Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.|
|Job Zone Examples||These occupations usually involve using communication and organizational skills to coordinate, supervise, manage, or train others to accomplish goals. Examples include food service managers, electricians, agricultural technicians, legal secretaries, occupational therapy assistants, and medical assistants.|
|SVP Range||(6.0 to < 7.0)|
Percentage of Respondents
|Education Level Required|
|46||High school diploma or equivalent|
|9||Less than high school diploma|
Interest code: RCI
- Realistic — Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
- Conventional — Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
- Investigative — Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
- Enterprising — Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
- Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
- Leadership — Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
- Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
- Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
- Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
- Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
- Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
- Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
- Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
- Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
- Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
- Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
- Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
- Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
- Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
- Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
- Support — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
- Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
- Relationships — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
Wages & Employment Trends
Median wages data collected from Captains, Mates, and Pilots of Water Vessels.
Employment data collected from Captains, Mates, and Pilots of Water Vessels.
Industry data collected from Captains, Mates, and Pilots of Water Vessels.
|Median wages (2014)||$34.78 hourly, $72,340 annual|
|Employment (2012)||35,000 employees|
|Projected growth (2012-2022)||Average (8% to 14%)|
|Projected job openings (2012-2022)||21,300|
|Top industries (2012)|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2014 wage data and 2012-2022 employment projections . "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.
Job Openings on the Web
Sources of Additional Information
Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.
- Water Transportation Occupations . Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition.