As a Designer or Engineer, Why Would I Want to Work in the Yachting Sector?

  • Posted April 26, 2024

Many of us know who and what we want to be growing up. Astronauts, Fighter Pilots, Chefs… the list is endless.

However, there is a huge throughput in secondary and higher education of those who want to be a Designer or an Engineer. Some know exactly what they want to design or engineer, others just want to be designing or engineering.

I wanted to put together a short article highlighting why a budding individual may want to look at marine/yachting over and above other transport industries such as aerospace or automotive. I may be biased, but the marine world has a huge amount going for it and is highly worth considering.


True creativity in many sectors has continued to dwindle, mainly due to increased restrictions, rules and regulations to govern safety and meet the standards imposed by global markets and rule-setters.

Take a car for example. The automotive world is governed in thousands of areas. Safety (both occupant and pedestrian), visibility, weight, performance and economy. All these requirements mean that whilst a car can carry a different badge and have a few different angles, each vehicle type has clear similarities. Due to the inherent series-build nature and tight margins, a car will always be designed a certain way and likely by huge teams of hundreds, with each Designer or Engineer tasked with an incredibly narrow design brief.

Take a boat however and we face a lot less restriction. We, of course, have safety pressures such as making a yacht watertight and with correct fire safety. However, at the same time we can be highly creative in the end product. Take for example the 24m rule within the world of series built yachts. Global shipyards have taken a rule and exploited it in so many ways that the end products are vastly different and can cater to the needs of a diverse customer base.

Moreover, design teams are a whole lot smaller. Teams of 50 or less are tasked with designing a yacht from a blank sheet, meaning that Designers and Engineers are given a lot of flexibility when it comes to their assigned area of each project.


Alongside the opportunity to be creative, the ability to innovate isn’t far behind. In other sectors, we’ve seen major innovation in terms of propulsion, interiors, electronics and more. Marine remains decades behind many other sectors, and this leaves the door open for huge leaps in technology and innovation.

In the past five years alone, we’ve seen technology come to the fore such as wind assisted shipping, totally new hull design and big leaps into autonomous drive systems. In some ways we’re not far off reinventing the wheel in a sector that has existed for hundreds of years, predating planes, trains and automobiles.

More and more marine tech firms are launching and we’re seeking a migration away from the ‘baby step’ engineer sectors of automotive and aerospace into a world where an Engineer can really make a difference in how an industry functions.

If you’re an Engineer with a wild imagination, this could be the world for you.

Working on-site with manufacturing

In yachting, many of the major yards have an engineering office on site and this is surely one of the holy grails for a Designer or Engineer. This is an opportunity to see your work come to life, to support the people manufacturing your work and to make real-time changes to improve ergonomics or to improve in terms of cost, quality or delivery.

Likewise, design and engineering in yachting breeds collaboration with both internal and external colleagues. A chance to work closely across multiple departments and drive forwards new ideas, bring together diverse expertise and work towards a common goal. Many yards will work on full scale mock-ups of projects, giving Engineers so much scope to evolve.

So, if you’re looking to work in a world where you’ll be able to fully exploit your skills and ability, maybe it’s time you considered looking at our wonderful world!  Get in touch and be a part of something exciting!