Maritime and Coastguard Agency

Whatever skills you may have, we can support you in developing a rewarding career whilst making a difference and contributing to saving lives.

Working for the Maritime and Coastguard Agency

MCGA Colleagues

Are you looking for an employer that supports women to grow and progress in their careers?

Do you want to work flexibly or part-time to fit around a busy family life?

Do you want to make a difference?

Whatever skills or background you may have, we can support you in developing a rewarding career whilst making a difference and contributing to saving lives.

Careers at the MCA vary, from Marine Surveyors and administrative officers to HR professionals and operational Coastguards, we rely on the diverse capabilities of our teams to achieve our aims and keep the public safe.

As an employer we provide regular support, training and development opportunities. We want you to be the best you can be, whatever your chosen career.

Female colleagues walking together after landing a helicopter

The MCA works together with our partners and stakeholders to prevent the loss of life at sea and on the coast in the UK. We produce legislation on maritime matters and guidance to help follow the rules.
Maritime safety is a worldwide priority. What we do matters; our work affects people every single day.

Whether at the beach, coast or sea, people rely on our 24-hour emergency service 365-days a year, whilst our surveyors operate to ensure high standards of safety for all boat users around the globe. Our staff understand the significance of their work and its contribution towards our vision to be the best maritime safety organisation in the world.

Opportunities exist all around the UK, with headquarters in Southampton and 20 other coastal offices.

Female colleagues laughing together

Our people matter

We understand the importance of work/ life balance, especially for those with families or caring responsibilities. Flexible working hours, job share opportunities, wellbeing support and diversity training are just a few examples of our dedication to creating an inclusive environment for everybody.

We offer a competitive benefits package with an attractive pension scheme, generous holiday allowance, childcare vouchers plus much more.

Whether you’re starting out on your career journey, changing paths or joining us as an experienced professional, you’ll be involved in saving and improving lives.


Did you know that you don’t need a maritime background or experience in emergency operations to become a Maritime Operations Officer?

Did you know we’re the fourth and only national emergency service in the UK as well as operating at sea and internationally?

Did you know Marine Surveyors carry out inspections on ships of all types and sizes all around the world?

Maritime and Coastguard agency employee in front of a computer

From Marine Surveyors, IT Technicians to operational Coastguards, our people are highly skilled. We can always rely on the diverse capabilities of our teams to achieve our aims and keep the public safe.

We want you to be the best you can be: we provide regular support, training and development opportunities for all our staff.

Safety matters. Join us and make a difference to people’s lives. From policy to enforcement, prevention to emergency response, communications to corporate services, we work together to create safer lives, safer ships, cleaner seas: our motto underpins everything we do.

Lauren, DfT Apprentice of the Year 2018, tells us about her apprenticeship journey and the best part about working at the MCA.

MCA: From a career in the dental Industry to human resources

Case Studies

Kate Lockett, HR Business Partner

What is your current role and your current flexible working arrangement?

I work at the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) as HR Business Partner. This involves managing the learning and development provision for the organisation.

I make sure that all our people have access to the right development opportunities at the right time. I work three days a week and can be flexible about where and which days I work.

How have you made this work for both yourself and your work?

The MCA is embracing Smarter Working which gives everyone more control over where and how they work.

Technology has made this possible; when I’m working from home or another MCA location, I can be virtually present at meetings or events.

This means that I never miss out on important family occasions or work events, which has had a huge – positive – impact on me.

What inspires you about your role?

The opportunity to make a difference to people’s lives on a personal and professional level.Helping people to develop and move towards their goals is incredibly fulfilling.

Tells us about your career journey

I started as a graduate Personnel Manager working for Tesco. After successfully completing the two-year graduate programme, I was appointed to the role of Personnel Manager. This involved all aspects of HR including responsibility for training. I discovered my passion for learning and development during this time.

I decided to specialise in this area of HR and looked for a job that not only satisfied this passion, but also had a more regular and sociable working pattern.

I joined the MCA as a Management and Development Trainer in 2007. Since then, I’ve worked in a variety of roles within this specialism until I secured promotion in 2016 to my current position.

Tell us about any obstacles you experienced on the way and how you overcame these challenges

My biggest challenge was moving from a full-time to part-time working pattern following my maternity leave. I was concerned that I’d be unable to make a positive impact if I wasn’t in the office the same amount of time as my full-time colleagues.

The support I received from my line manager and wider agency was extensive.I quickly adjusted to my new role and found that I could bring equal benefit to the team’s goals and objectives whilst working part-time, as I had as a full-time employee.

The best thing about working at the MCA?

The flexibility and variety of the role. There are so many interesting and challenging areas to work in. I’m never bored and working part-time has never hindered my promotion prospects or stopped me from being tasked with interesting projects.

I wouldn’t stay 11 years with an employer who didn’t support people whatever their personal circumstances.

Rob Townsend, Lead Technical Architect (Radio and Telecom Services)

I lead a team, which builds and maintains the vital communications infrastructure that links the seafarer with HM Coastguard. I feel massively proud to be part of this team; ultimately, we save lives at sea.

Julie-Anne Wood, Assistant Director - Assistant Coastguard Governance, Policy, Standards and International

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency has incorporated women in everything they do. I have never allowed my gender to get in the way of my career – that’s one of the great things about HM Coastguard – the only limits on women are those that are imposed by themselves.

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