On-line Training Plugs Gap in Technical Skills Offshore

Atlas Interactive has developed a range of technical courses for use on-line that will fill a gap in the marketplace and set the standard for process technicians in the oil and gas industry around the world.

The e-learning specialists, in partnership with Aberdeen Skills and Enterprise Training (ASET) have launched the Process Operations and Technology for Oil & Gas Industry e-learning courses after identifying the lack of on-line training with qualifications for technicians. The two organizations worked to introduce a suite of learning modules for new recruits and existing technicians to acquire accredited qualifications. It is estimated that around 20% of a typical oil company's workforce comprises onshore and offshore technicians and many have no formal qualifications.

"This training is a fast-track solution to equip the industry with sufficient new technicians to meet the skills gaps," says Atlas sales and marketing director, Tim Love. "It will ensure that we have qualified technicians trained to a recognized standard that can be applied the world over.

Mr. Love adds: "There is a worldwide gap in technician training and standards and we are now in discussions with major oil companies around the world to implement this training. For example we reckon there are over 100,000 technicians in the Middle-east alone who would benefit from these courses. The training will help recruits from other sectors get up to speed in the oil and gas industry and speed up the induction process for young entrants. Equally, there is a recognition of the need for the industry to capture the knowledge and experience of the high proportion of the workforce that is to retire in the next ten years. Their skills and experience must be passed on to the next generation."

A significant proportion of offshore personnel have worked their way up the career ladder from technician to supervisor or manager but are without formal qualifications and Atlas believes that these courses give these people the chance to obtain an official qualification

The courses are being accredited by the oil and gas standards body OPITO and the Energy Institute. Trainees receive certification from City & Guilds or Edexcel, two of the UK's leading providers of vocational qualifications.

Graham Beattie, general manager of ASET says: "The e-learning courses bring the advantages of a new learning format to a market where proven competence and certification are paramount. E-learning offers a low-cost and highly effective training solution where travel, subsistence and time away from work costs are minimized. Successful results are maximized due to ease of use and assessment."

Many companies in the global oil industry routinely train their workforce using Atlas Interactive's e-Learning programs. Over 250,000 people in 30 countries are currently benefiting every year from the company's training. Head-quartered in Aberdeen, Atlas employs 50 people and boasts a client portfolio that includes BP, Shell, ExxonMobil, Chevron, Petronas, Total, CNR, Maersk Oil and ConocoPhillips.