Roger Green, David Cook and Joe Conway want to enlist highly skilled
software engineers to live and work aboard ship in international waters about
three miles off the coast of California.
Clients would realize savings, in part, from SeaCode’s relatively low
salaries for IT employees. While it could vary depending on skill set, average
pay would be around $21,500.
“Our pay is very close to what a young officer makes fresh out of
school in the military, and his living conditions are a whole lot better [on a
cruise liner] than they are on a military ship,” Cook told HR News. Lodging,
meals and housekeeping would be handled by a 200- to 300-member support crew,
provided free to employees.
There’s no ship yet and they’re waiting until they have clients on board
with the idea before recruiting an estimated 600 software engineers, but the
goal is to be operating by early 2006.
Green said that using SeaCode as an outsourcing destination would not be
much different from outsourcing work to Canada and Mexico, which share borders
with the United States.
Besides, the co-founders say, they plan to mostly
hire U.S. workers. “We will favor Americans first,” Green said.
Four-month onboard stints would be broken up with two months of paid
leave. The LA Times reported May 5 that employees cleared by immigration
authorities would be able to take shore leave when they are off duty, hopping
aboard a water taxi for a 30-minute ride to Los Angeles.
operate two 12-hour shifts—with time off for coffee, lunch and dinner
breaks—enabling code to be written around the clock for the kind of
time-sensitive software found inside cell-phones or U.S. video games.
But for those who liken the idea to slave ships and worker exploitation,
“nothing could be further [from] the truth,” Green said.
A cruise liner where employees have access to a shipboard doctor and
amenities such as a movie theater, bar, library, workout facilities and
shuffleboard court “sounds like a laboratory where people live in almost idyllic
conditions,” said Green.
Hmmmm. Low pay but fabulous living accomodations. Guess it would be ok if you didn't get seasick!