Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Lydia Peppard from Health Service Executive to give some advice for people considering this job:

Lydia Peppard

Care Assistant

Health Service Executive

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Lydia Peppard
The advise that I would give to someone considering this job is to do their Leaving Cert and do the Transition year as this would give an opportunity to get some job experience or do some voluntary work within the community.

Do a Level 5 FETAC health related course. The skills and qualities that are needed to do this type of work are a real sense of caring for other people, communication skills, listening skills, be able to take and give constructive criticism without causing or taking offence, patience a willing to give your best effort to your work.
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Stevedore / Port Operative

Job Zone

Education
Some of these occupations may require a Leaving Certificate or similar.

Related Experience
Little or no previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, a person can become a waiter or waitress even if he/she has never worked before.

Job Training
Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few days to a few months of training. Usually, an experienced worker could show you how to do the job.

Job Zone Examples
These occupations involve following instructions and helping others. Examples include taxi drivers, amusement and recreation attendants, counter clerks, construction laborers, and waiters or waitresses.

€18k > 31
Port Operative
Salary Range
(thousands per year)*
€18 - 31
Related Information:
Data Source(s):
CareersPortal

Last Updated: April, 2017

* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.
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At a Glance... header image

Loads and unloads cargo from ships and controls and guides passengers and their vehicles as they pass through the port.


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The Work header image

Stevedores load and unload cargo from ships. They control and guide passengers and their vehicles as they pass through the port.

In marine work they deal with everything at the port. A stevedore uses forklift trucks and cranes. On roll-on/roll-off ferries, operatives drive the vehicles that carry trailers on and off the ships.

On container ships, dockside cranes or the ship's own lifting gear is used to load and unload containers.

Operatives also use lorries and other vehicles to transport cargo from the quayside to outdoor storage areas.

Port operatives normally work a 40-hour week, in eight-hour shift patterns. Work is outdoors, in all weathers, but you may spend some time inside in the ship's hold or in cargo storage, which may be hot and cramped.

The work can be strenuous with plenty of lifting and bending. You may have to work at heights. Some cargoes can be dusty, dirty or oily, or produce unpleasant smells or fumes.


Personal Qualitiesheader image

As a Port Operative you will need:

  • Physical fitness
  • Normal colour vision, as some cargoes are colour-coded
  • Safety conscious as you may be working in a hazardous environment
  • Good at following instructions and explaining them to other people
  • Ability to work as part of a team


Entry Routesheader image

There are no formal entry requirements, but applicants will need to pass a medical examination.

The minimum age for entry is usually 21.

Although any driving involved will not be on public roads, most employers will require applicants to possess a driving licence in order to demonstrate good levels of driving skill. Experience of driving cranes, forklift trucks or lorries is often an advantage.

Some engineering skills could be useful for carrying out basic maintenance work around the docks.

Ref. Irish Maritime Development Office 

Last Updated: April, 2015


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Contactsheader image

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Organisation: IMDO Irish Maritime Development Office
Address: Wilton Park House, Wilton Place D02 NT99, Dublin 2, Ireland
Tel: (01) 7753900
Email: Click here
Url Click here

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Career Guidance

This occupation is popular with people who have the following Career Interests...


...and for people who like working in the following Career Sectors:

Maritime, Fishing & Aquaculture

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