As commander, the Captain has full responsibility for the ship, including operational and administrative management as well as general maintenance. With safety as the main priority, the Captain must carry out these duties while maximizing productivity and operational efficiency, ensuring the safety of the passengers and crew and protecting the public and the environment. The Captain is responsible for operating the ship in accordance with the highest industry standards and Desgagnés’ reputation. The captain also acts as a representative and ambassador of the company vis-à-vis the passengers and must ensure their comfort, safety, and satisfaction such that they can experience a memorable and enjoyable sea voyage.
The Navigation Officer directs the ship’s operations. He is responsible for ensuring safety aboard the ship, as well as setting and following the required course. He coordinates and supervises deckhands’ activities including the supervision of the loading and unloading of cargo. The First Officer is responsible for overall cargo management, whereas the three other Navigation Officers also keep watch in the wheelhouse for two work shifts per 24-hour period. The Navigation Officer determines the ship’s geographic position using navigational instruments, charts, and graphs. He updates the ship’s log and monitors the crew’s activities, weather conditions, tides, and currents.
The Deckhand/Helmsman operates and maintains various deck equipment (winches, cranes, cables, etc.). Under the Deck Officers’ supervision, he takes part in docking and mooring maneuvers, ship supply, and cargo loading and unloading operations. In addition, he does shifts on the navigation bridge, steering the ship per the orders of the Navigation Officer or the Captain. This aspect of the work includes the monitoring of various navigation instruments and keeping watch for vessel traffic and obstacles.The Deckhand/Helmsman operates and maintains various deck equipment (winches, cranes, cables, etc.). Under the Deck Officers’ supervision, he takes part in docking and mooring maneuvers, ship supply, and cargo loading and unloading operations. In addition, he does shifts on the navigation bridge, steering the ship per the orders of the Navigation Officer or the Captain. This aspect of the work includes the monitoring of various navigation instruments and keeping watch for vessel traffic and obstacles.
The Chief Engineer oversees the work of crew members assigned to the engine room. He is responsible for keeping the ship’s various systems in good working condition: electrical generation for ship’s propulsion and on board energy requirements, drinking water supply, wastewater treatment, as well as steam and compressed air systems.
The Mechanical Officer is responsible for ship operation, maintenance, and repairs, including propulsion systems and auxiliary machinery. He must be able to quickly identify the cause of a breakdown in any of these systems and efficiently take action to get it up and running again. As a general rule, each Mechanical Officer keeps watch in the ship’s control room for two work shifts per 24-hour period.
The Mechanical Assistant does routine maintenance and assists the Mechanical Officers to do repair work on engines, machines, and various equipment. In addition to keeping the work environment clean and safe, he watches over instruments which monitor the ship’s mechanical, electrical, and hydraulic systems.
The Purser is the passenger’s front line service coordinator. He liaises with port agents and welcomes passengers aboard the ship. In addition, the Purser assigns cabins to passengers and makes sure maximum passenger limits are respected.
The Cargo Purser is in charge of managing the unloading of merchandise (containers and/or pallets). He also returns vehicles to passengers when they disembark at the various ports.
The Head Cook prepares a variety of delicious, healthy meals for passengers and crew. He is responsible for provisioning and food inventory management. He organizes and manages all galley, cafeteria, and food staff activities. He ensures the maintenance of the appropriate food health and safety standards for the ship’s food preparation areas.
The Second Cook assists the Head Cook with meal production. He ensures the preparation of breakfasts, sauces and appetizers. He is also charged with the making of pastries on board the ship, including desserts and snacks (muffins, croissants, etc.).
The Assistant Cook assists the Head Cook and Second Cook. He is also responsible for basic food preparation (chopping vegetables, making soup stocks, etc.). The Assistant Cook also helps prepare breakfasts, sandwiches, and “subs” for crew members.
The Crew Server serves members of the crew. He takes orders and provides service between the kitchen and crew mess (dining area). The crew server also ensures that there are always sufficient fruit, snacks, and beverages on hand for crew members. He also oversees the maintenance and cleaning of washrooms located in crew areas and ensures a sufficient inventory of supplies and bedding for employees on board.
The passenger waiter serves passengers in the ship’s dining room. He is in charge of keeping the dining room clean and preparing the table place settings for diners as well as striking tables at the completion of meals.
The Cafeteria Server is responsible for preparing quick meals and serving the “Daily Specials” to passengers. In the counter service style cafeteria, passengers line up to be served and the Cafeteria Server ensures the delivery of their meal and handles their payment. He is in charge of managing cafeteria inventory and keeping the work environment clean.
The housekeeping attendant is responsible for all housekeeping duties onboard the ship. He changes linens, cleans cabins and public areas (lounge, bathrooms, fitness room, stairs, etc.).
The port agent acts as the ship operator’s local representative. He is in charge of receiving merchandise for shipping, ensuring that containerization complies with best practices and applicable regulations, preparing shipping documents, delivering merchandise unloaded from the ship, handling passage sales, and coordinating activities with the ship and the operations department. The port agent also liaises with local authorities.
The Stevedore handles operations related to loading and unloading the ship. He uses the appropriate machinery to handle and secure cargo transiting through the ports. The work may include transshipping container cargo (general and perishable), using heavy machinery, handling oversized construction equipment, etc.