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Direct Entry Petty Officer Engineering Technician (Marine Engineering)
Job Role

Direct Entry Petty Officer Engineering Technician (Marine Engineering)

You’ll be fast-tracked to working with our most advanced warships, part of the team that makes sure they’re always ready for action.

Fast trackTechnologyEngineeringMechanicsApprenticeships
  • £38,500 - £51,000
  • A-Levels / college qualifications
  • Surface Fleet
  • Engineering
  • Rating level

At a glance

Fancy being fast-tracked to a crucial role in our world-class marine engineering team? After accelerated training, it will be your job to make sure our state-of-the-art warships are always ready for action.
I didn’t have the qualifications to join as an Engineer Officer, but this scheme meant I could move straight into a role that’s got the responsibility I want. Now I get to travel the world, getting my hands dirty, and working with amazing kit.


Direct Entry Technician (Marine Engineering), Engineering branch

Role details

What you’ll do

As a Direct Entry Technician (DET) you will begin your Royal Navy career at the rank of Petty Officer Marine Engineering Technician, effectively accelerating your career by three ranks. You will responsible for providing your expertise and leadership at the head of a team of Royal Navy engineers. You’ll serve on board a ship in active duty and on shore. In both scenarios you’ll experience all the excitement, camaraderie and variety of life in the Royal Navy.

Your role

  • When you’re deployed at sea, you’ll take the role of Marine Engineering Department Section Head, where you’ll lead on vital engineering projects.
  • Depending on your chosen specialism, you’ll be responsible for sophisticated electrical or mechanical equipment across either propulsion, controls or ship systems.
  • You’ll provide crucial support to the Head of Group, ensuring the systems in your charge are maintained and repaired to the highest level.
  • As a senior member of your team, you’ll be responsible for providing guidance and training for less experienced engineers.

Pay & benefits

  • A starting salary of £38,500, rising to £51,000 as your career progresses.
  • An excellent non-contributory pension scheme – we pay into it for you, so you don’t have to sacrifice any salary.
  • Six weeks of paid holiday every year – plus public holidays. 
  • Free medical and dental care.
  • Amazing opportunities, including world travel and adventurous training for two weeks every year.
  • Free gym and sports, from football to kayaking to kite-surfing.
  • Forces Help to Buy scheme – a 0% loan to get you on, or further up, the housing ladder.
  • Subsidised travel, accommodation and food.
  • Handy discounts with lots of top brands, from Marriott hotels to Audi cars and high street stores. 

Skills for life

Opportunities open to you  

  • Work towards a relevant degree such as Mechanical Engineering.
  • Free professional registration with a recognised engineering council.

Skills you'll develop

  • Adapt and build on your civilian experience, conducting maintenance in a challenging and dynamic environment.
  • Learn to manage an engineering team responsible for maintaining some of the most powerful kit on the planet.
  • Improve your leadership qualities and gain professional qualifications through the Institute of Leadership and Management levels.


  • You'll need to be under 18 to 39 years old
  • A minimum of two GCSEs (or equivalent) at grade 4 or above in English Language and Mathematics
  • A formal academic engineering qualification at minimum of Level 4 (HNC or equivalent) 
  • Three years’ experience maintaining and diagnosing faults on electric or mechanical systems. Relevant systems include; propulsion, controls, diesel engines, water plant, power generation and refrigeration
  • Experience supervising and line managing at least two engineering technicians
  • A National of the United Kingdom, a Commonwealth citizen or Dual National
  • Pass the Naval Swimming Test


Skills & Interests

  • A quick thinker, with a passion for working with the latest equipment and technology
  • A problem-solver who can work well as part of a team
  • A real sense of adventure, with a high level of physical and mental fitness
  • Enthusiasm for fixing and maintaining electronic and mechanical systems

Joining Process

From picking your role to the first day of training; everything you need to know as an officer

Got a question?

Our virtual recruiter is available to answer your questions 24 hours a day

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