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Offshore Mechanic Jobs

One of the most exciting venues for a heavy equipment mechanic to build a career is on an offshore oil platform. Working offshore can be a great choice for those who find the unique lifestyle of working at sea appealing.

Drilling rigs don't shut down - they are 24 hour operations, 365 days a year. The crews work 12 hour shifts, for between 2 and 4 weeks at a time; this is known as a 'hitch'. Each hitch is followed by an equal number of days off.

An offshore drilling platform is a highly technological workplace undergoing constant improvement and modification. Enormous financial resources are poured into automating these mechanical marvels, requiring employees to undergo a great deal of training in order to learn how to use this special equipment and technology.

For this reason, applicants who have a mechanical or technical background are highly preferred. Mechanics in particular, as well as welders, engineers and electricians, are in great demand on the rigs.

Getting Hired For Offshore Mechanic Jobs

Several required safety training courses will need taken before new hires can come on to the rig. These are only the beginning of a great many training opportunities given to offshore mechanics, ensuring a continuous development of skills. Long term career prospects for offshore mechanics are fantastic, limited only by the employee's experience, training, and skills.

New offshore mechanics generally begin their career offshore working in a junior capacity, as a Motorman. With experience and proficiency in offshore procedures, tools and techniques, Motormen will advance to the Rig Mechanic position. Subsequent advancement will lead the Mechanic to a Chief Mechanic position, and to the possibility of promotion to that of Maintenance Supervisor.

An ambitious new offshore mechanic can look forward to a great paying career, with 6 months a year off to enjoy as as a result. Following are a few more details about an offshore mechanic career path and the respective job positions and duties on that path.


The Motorman is the entry-level mechanical position on an offshore rig. He will assist the Rig Mechanic in his daily work. To qualify for the position as a Motorman, he should be a Certified Fitter or Certified Mechanic, or be a graduate from an accredited technical school. Some Motorman have moved into this position by working as a maintenance Roustabout first, earning their Fitter or Mechanical Certifications between hitches.


The Mechanic is responsible for executing inspections and maintenance of all mechanical systems and equipment aboard the offshore platform. This includes the diesel generators and all mechanical operations aboard the offshore platform, including drilling floor equipment. A minimum of two years of experience as a Motorman is preferred before obtaining a Mechanic position.

Chief Mechanic

The Chief Mechanic supervises and gives instructions to the Motormen and Mechanics. If a problem is too difficult for either of them to solve, the Chief Mechanic is expected to suggest or implement a solution. A minimum of two years of experience as a Mechanic is required to advance into a Chief Mechanic position, but more experience is generally preferred.

Maintenance Supervisor

The Maintenance Supervisor is the technical manager for the entire offshore platform. His responsibilities include rig maintenance in addition to being in charge of whatever repairs of machinery or drilling equipment might be required. Additionally, he is in charge of any technical modifications to the rig that might be required of him from the drilling contractor. He also has responsibility for ensuring that adequate stocks of spare parts are kept on board the rig at all times.

He must also have good computer skills, in order to manage the electronic maintenance systems in place on modern offshore drilling rigs. A Certificate of Competency in accordance with the STCW Convention is required for this position. Typically, the maintenance supervisor will work for some time in an Assistant Maintenance Supervisory capacity before being promoted to Rig Maintenance Supervisor. His role is not unlike that of a Chief Engineer of an Ocean going ship.

Offshore Mechanic Salary

  • Motorman - $57,500.00
  • Assistant mechanic - $65,000.00
  • Mechanic - $72,000.00
  • Chief mechanic - $80,000.00+
  • Maintenance supervisor $90,000.00 - $130,000.00

Getting an Offshore Mechanic Job

If the prospect of getting hired on as an offshore mechanic is something that appeals to you, you can learn where and how to apply here for offshore mechanic jobs.

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