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Fullers360 celebrates International Women’s Day by hitting an impressive milestone, with nearly 50% of its marine crew being women following years of focused effort to ensure equal opportunities are available to women at Fullers360.

Each year the percentage of women hired continues to grow: in 2018, 30% of all new hires were women; in 2019, that number grew to 35% and last year in 2020 a huge 48% of all new hires were female.

The statistics are impressive in context of the wider marine industry throughout the world, where according to the International Marine Organisation, only 2% of seafarers worldwide are female. Fullers360 is proudly leading the way in exceeding the industry standard year on year.

Fullers360 CEO Mike Horne is proud of the progress the organisation has made towards creating a more equitable environment for women and challenging the status quo in the marine industry.

“The marine industry at large has been historically dominated by men as the statistics show. This year’s international women’s day theme is ‘Choose to Challenge’ and we have been proudly opting to challenge the marine industry status quo when it comes to gender equality for years; in fact, nearly half of our deck crew are women.

“In total we have 50 people working towards or who have already gained their master qualification and half of those are women. Importantly, COVID-19 has not slowed down our commitment to progress within the organisation, with the most recent pre-summer season hiring intake achieving a 50:50 gender split”, says Mike.

Natasha Colville, a recently appointed Crew Development Manager at Fullers360 says the opportunities for women at Fullers360 are endless.

“I first started at Fullers360 five years ago in an entry level role as an onboard service crew member. Since then, I’ve gained multiple qualifications to become a certified Master meaning I can now lead a crew on any vessel at Fullers360. Being able to learn on the job has been amazing, there aren’t many places in the marine industry where you can walk into an entry level role and climb the ladder so quickly.

“If I could give one piece of advice to women thinking about getting into the marine world it’d be to just go for it! The days of the industry being male dominated are well and truly gone particularly with an organisation like Fullers360 breaking the mould, there are so many avenues and opportunities to try out, who knows where you will end up!

“At the end of 2020 I was appointed as a Crew Development Manager (CDM) which means I manage 25 crew and support them in their day-to-day. Out of the 4 CDMs, 2 of us are female – it’s great to see women in leadership roles, particularly for our young entry level mariners joining this industry – it gives our younger female crew a tangible aspiration with leaders to look up to.

“Traditionally the marine industry is very male dominated. For a long time being out on the water was a man’s world. Boats have always been called ‘she’ and that’s because they historically were seen to ‘belong’ to men, but those days are long gone now; in my time at Fullers360 I’ve seen more and more women start their marine careers and successfully gain qualifications. It’s amazing to see!”, says Natasha.

Mike Horne says the business is committed to continuing the trajectory towards ensuring equal opportunities for women and celebrating their achievements.

“We’ve seen many women progress through the ranks. Some start with us in an entry level onboard service crew role and can work their way up to a deckhand, or master position. The most recent statistics position Fullers360 as a leader in the marine industry working towards a more inclusive marine environment for women. Within our organisation we have plenty of scope and opportunity to further our ongoing commitment to supporting women in the marine industry and will continue to seek ways to ensure equal opportunities are available to women in our organisation.”

Find out more about some of the women behind Fullers360 here: