Who is Conrad Empson?
Although many of you will remember him from Below Deck Mediterranean Series 3, his career in the yachting industry has been much more than that … we sat down with him to find out more about his journey from on-board to shore side.
Born in April 1994, Conrad was introduced to the world of yachting by his mother who also worked in the industry. He was 18 when he took his first yachting job, it hasn’t been plain sailing, but he hasn’t looked back. After finishing school, he completed his STCW and ENG1 qualifications, jumped on a plane to the South of France, arrived in Antibes and was very lucky to meet Corey Adcook (experienced build manager and superyacht captain), who took Conrad under his wing and gave him his first deckhand job on a 60m yacht. Corey taught him everything he needed on-board including passion and discipline.
Having worked on board yachts for 4 years (both Med and Caribbean seasons), he was approached by a casting production manager for Below Deck. He participated in a few rounds of interviews, and Conrad was asked to join the show. It was a 6 week fully paid job and the yacht he has on at the time allowed him to take a sabbatical to complete it, he had full intention of returning to the yacht after the show, but didn’t. It was at this point that Conrad watched some episodes of the show to see what he had really let himself in for! He did the show to highlight to people how yachting should be done, he said “it isn’t acted, but it is edited, and people’s personalities are chosen to clash”. The yacht guests paid a small amount to be onboard for 48 hours, it’s not your usual charter.
His appearance on Below Deck has been a real door opener and a conversation starter ever since. He took a short period of time after the show to try a few things including house renovations and a fitness app, but quickly re-joined the superyacht industry.
Identifying potential security risks on-board superyachts
MarineGuard owner Richard Webb was a family friend, who is passionate about superyacht security. What began as a company providing market leading technology for tracking and monitoring yachts, MarineGuard has now established itself as the marine security market leader developing superyacht security systems and products that have been installed on some of the largest 100m+ superyachts in the world.
Conrad joined the company overseeing design, planning and installation through to delivery of security systems on many of the world’s most exclusive yachts.
They quickly discovered that when it comes to superyacht security it was the crew that worked on board who were the weakest link. Security is paramount on-aboard, including physical security, access control, diver protection, security cameras, cyber security etc., but who are your crew?
Conrad said, “During my time working on yachts, I was never background checked to see if I had a criminal record. We have all worked with some odd people that have clearly escaped their past life. We are asked to sleep next to these people with no proper vetting of who they are”. He also added that at times he was chaperoning children of the elite owners and guests, again with no vetting.
In a bid to put that to right Richard Webb empowered Conrad Empson to create CrewPass to provide a safety standard within the industry. CrewPass is a self-supporting and separate identity.
Do you really know your crew? What is CrewPass?
Conrad is now CEO of CrewPass, an innovative superyacht crew management software, combining multiple background checking and screening companies around the world, crew identity is confirmed and provides crew with an accreditation which is quickly becoming required in the industry.
Individual crew members can sign up to the service to show that you are a safe candidate for employment. From just £9.99 per month, crew can provide prospective or current employers confidence in who they are employing.
CrewPass Approved Accreditation is the global equivalent to an Enhanced DBS check in the UK. CrewPass conduct the most advanced criminal background searches on every crew member, ensuring a safer environment on board and for any guests. Once submitted the typical background check takes 7-10 days for a full result. The CrewPass Approved accreditation last 2 years. When it expires, you will be required to refresh your background check. This ensures all information is kept up to date, giving the employer confidence in who they are employing.
It can also be used by vessels to see if crew candidates have passed background checks and are safe for employment.
Crew agencies understand the benefit of CrewPass conducting each candidate’s background and qualifications checks. Crew recruitment agencies are also signing up to the service to improve their placement process by ensuring that they only have fully vetted crew available. To integrate CrewPass into your websites for effortless validation contact Conrad and the CrewPass team on [email protected]
As well as the accreditation the CrewPass dashboard has screens for daily operations, watch rotas, post boards, secure chat functions and indications of who is currently on board.
What is a current day in the life of Conrad Empson?
The CrewPass team now includes account managers, marketing, accounts and developer functions providing full customer service. With the software developed, Conrad is now focusing on promoting CrewPass and building relationships with superyacht businesses, yachts and crew. He regularly visits yards, ports and superyacht agencies. If you would like to find out more, please contact them.
Superyacht fleet safety
It is very important for dsnm to support their fleet in every way possible and we believe that crew safety is paramount, which is why we are happy to support CrewPass and recommend it to our fleet. CrewPass is also a nominee in the category of Crew Superyacht Software 2022 in the Superyacht Business Awards (voted by captains and crew).
For more information visit: www.crewpass.co.uk