Is it hard to get a job in the oil and gas industry?

If you have browsed the internet for entry-level jobs, or any jobs for that matter, in the oil and gas industry, you have probably found yourself going in a loop. It can seem almost secretive after hours spent on a search engine and failing to find relevant information. We are here to tell you that finding a job in the industry isn’t as challenging as you might think. In this article, we will explain everything you need to know on how to start a career in the oil and gas industry.

The oil and gas industry is constantly changing as seasoned employees call it a day or exploration projects become more difficult. However, this doesn’t mean that there isn’t work. If you are considering employment in the oil and gas industry, it is essential to know that it isn’t always on offshore rigs. There are plenty of job opportunities within the industry that can start you off in your career in oil and gas, giving you a foot in the door to climb that ladder. 

Where do you find the work?

When seeking an opportunity within the oil and gas industry, you must know that you will usually need to move to where you are required. However, for those with a spark of wanderlust, it gives tremendous opportunities to travel the planet. Some places you might end up in include Australia, Canada, the USA, Abu Dhabi, Mexico, Singapore, Mozambique, and Russia. 

The first step is deciding where you want to work. Once you have done this, your job search can finally start. Of course, this will take some research, but it is important to narrow it down to a specific place. Make a note of where the oil is, find the nearest towns and cities, and then find the companies. There is a great demand for these jobs, so hiring is only sometimes advertised online. However, they will be in local newspapers and classified ad sites if announced, so check them out. If you’re struggling to find local websites, then Wikipedia can be helpful. It is also useful to check with local employment agencies in these places as they will probably supply much of the unskilled labour.

It is also a good idea to get in touch directly with the companies and speak to their HR department; they will usually have a good idea of when positions will be available or point you in the right direction. This is the first crucial step in how to start a career in the oil and gas industry.

What are they looking for?

Knowing how to stand out in the oil and gas job market can seem hard, so here are some pointers on what they will be looking for.

Jobs in the oil and gas industry will almost always require you to have a clean driver’s licence, be physically fit and able to carry up to 50lb various times throughout the day and be willing to work 12 to 14-hour shifts every day of the week. In addition, you will be required to partake in a drug test from time to time. Other desired skills include problem-solving, self-motivation, analytical skills, organisation, and, most importantly, adaptability, as you could end up anywhere in the world for any amount of time. If you fit all of the above, you are already one step towards your career in oil and gas. 

Entry level roles

As we said before, not all work in oil and gas will mean being on an offshore rig. Many jobs are available within the industry, so if the right one isn’t waiting for you, it is better to get your foot in the door. Many jobs in the industry happen through recommendations and contacts, and there is no better way to make these contacts than working in the industry. 

Although it is useful, most roles don’t require a high level of education, as skills can be acquired while you’re on the job. However, it would be best if you remembered that this could be a double-edged sword as it does limit the availability of roles. It is wise to consider looking into roles in delivering machine parts, running a truck, pressure washing, dockworker, welding, drilling, roughneck, roustabout, maintenance or installing pipelines. All of these are a great foot in the door. There are also companies where subcontract specialists work on rigs, and these are always looking for workers who can learn fast. 

How to stand out in the oil and gas job market

While finding work in the oil and gas industry may seem like a long task, you can do a few things to make yourself stand out in the job market. If you struggle to find the right work, it is a good idea to keep working towards your end goal. Here are a few things that you can do to help.

  • Earn certificates – If you can, look for relevant certificates that would be useful for work in the oil and gas industry. Some specific practical certificates exist, such as oil rig training programs or offshore safety inductions. These will be very desirable to employers when looking through your resume.
  • Find some work experience – Find relevant work experience within the industry. Even if it is for a month, you might gain some valuable contacts to help you move forward in your career. Remember, an employee with some experience is far more attractive than one with none.
  • Study – It might be a good idea to get some education in a relevant field. Most STEM (science, tech, engineering, and maths) courses will be advantageous for your career. 

Your dream job might be around the corner

If you are looking for work in the industry, Rowe & Co is one of the world’s leading recruiters in oil and gas. We often have a selection of oil and gas jobs in Australia. So head to our website and get in touch today; we might have what you’re looking for to get your foot in the door.