Rigzone 2Q Survey Reveals Oil, Gas Companies Reluctant to Hire

Rigzone 2Q Survey Reveals Oil, Gas Companies Reluctant to Hire
Rigzone's 2Q global hiring survey reveals oil and gas companies' reluctance to increase hiring efforts in the near term.

Still grappling with market uncertainty, 51 percent of global hiring managers decreased their hiring efforts in the past three months, according to Rigzone’s latest global hiring survey. Additionally, 13 percent have completely frozen their recruitment plans.

Since oil prices bottomed out in mid-March, the industry has seen slight increases in oil price per barrel, but not enough for oil and gas companies to feel comfortable enough to actively increase hiring plans in the near future, the survey revealed. In fact, 54 percent of global hiring managers said they believe job cuts are more likely in the next six months and 65 percent expect to experience a loss of budget for approved headcount in 2015. Since the beginning of the downturn, globally, the oil and gas industry has already seen more than 150,000 jobs lost.

A very valid concern among oil and gas companies during a downturn, especially with the continued challenge of the Great Crew Change, is employee attrition. According to the same hiring survey, almost 70 percent of global hiring managers expect an anticipated decline in voluntary departures of employees throughout the next six months.    

Despite the decreased hiring and recruitment efforts, opportunities still exist for oil and gas companies to secure skilled workers, with 81 percent of global hiring managers expressing that the candidate pool has grown in the last three months and 34 percent said the time to fill open positions has shortened in the last three months. Additionally, 70 percent indicated candidates are not asking for more compensation compared to three months ago.


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Keith Patton  |  June 29, 2015
I started my career back in 1980, and have seen several of the oil industry ups and downs. I am amazed that with all the brain power, that companies have not learned some sane way for them to hire their workers. I will not use Human Resources because it de-personalizes the people behind the phrase. Companies throw money at people to hire them, creating out of control salary inflation. In the 80s right out of school, I got a raise every three months, because I could have increased my pay by simply quitting and walking across the street to another company. It disgruntled the older hands that our salaries increased so quickly and no wonder. The whole situation made my and my classmates who all worked for majors, heads swim. We knew we were not worth what we were being paid at that time in our career, but what do you do. Then the bill for the free lunch came due in the mid 80s when reality set in and companies started looking at the bottom line and letting people go. The other shoe dropped in the late 80s when the price per barrel dropped from $32 to $8 over night as Saudi Arabia did what they are doing now: overproducing to drop the price. Some authorities say back then it was to destabilize the Soviet Economy at the behest of Reagan and William Casey the CIA head. Whatever the cause, the effect was the loss of some 500,000 jobs in the industry. Phillips my employer laid off over 50% of its exploration staff and arguably never recovered from it. I was hiring two years ago during the unconventional boom and saw the same thing. I had people hired away for twice their current salaries, only to lose their jobs when their starry eyed employers realized that they were not qualified to do the work they had been hired to do. In the rush to hire people they will believe anything, and HR people are too ready to believe their key word searches. When will the Industry adopt sane hiring practices, and retain people during down turns, if as so many of them say, people are our most valuable resource. Until they do, university enrollment will continue to produce bumper crops of graduates when there are no jobs available and have barren field when the industry is desperate for workers. With the coming Great Crew Change looming it is a poor time to turn away candidates, as they will move on and find employment in other careers and will be lost for good. Unless lured back by the next round of salary inflation. And so the cycle will go.

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