Oil Majors Quizzed on Near-Term Permian Hiring Plans

Oil Majors Quizzed on Near-Term Permian Hiring Plans
Rigzone asks several oil and gas majors about their hiring plans in the Permian Basin in the near future.

Royal Dutch Shell plc expects to be in “growth mode” in the Permian Basin over the next few years, a company spokesperson said.

“Shell fully expects to be in a growth mode in the Permian for at least the next few years as we continue to drill wells and significantly increase our production from the region,” the Shell spokesperson said when asked by Rigzone about its near-term hiring plans in the Permian.

The oil and gas major currently employs more than 800 workers dedicated to the Permian. Over 700 Shell staff and contractors are located in the Midland and surrounding areas, and approximately 150 work in Shell’s Houston offices in the Energy Corridor.

  “With more than $1 billion of our capital investment allocated to the region, the Permian area operations represent a significant portion of Shell's Shales business,” the spokesperson added.

Meanwhile, fellow major Exxon Mobil Corp. told Rigzone it typically does not make projections regarding its hiring plans but said it “look[s] forward to continuing the important work taking place in the Permian over the years to come.”

ExxonMobil currently employs 485 workers in the Permian Basin through its subsidiary XTO Energy. The oil major holds 1.8 million acres in the Permian Basin, and its Permian resource base stands at more than 9.5 billion oil-equivalent barrels. Since 2014, ExxonMobil has added more than 300,000 acres in the core of the Permian.

Chevron Corp., another oil and gas major, told Rigzone that it didn’t provide employee forecast numbers when asked about its near-term hiring plans in the Permian Basin. A company spokesperson did reveal, however, that Chevron was “on pace” to ramp up its operated rigs in the region to 20 by the end of the year – as of January, the count was 16.

With approximately 2.2 million net acres, Chevron is one of the Permian Basin’s largest net acreage holders. In 2011, Chevron produced its five billionth barrel from the Permian.

Permian Playing ‘Key Role’

The Permian is playing a key role in shaping the future of the energy industry, according to the Shell spokesperson.

“Permian would rank along with the top five OPEC countries today. The basin offers challenging yet rewarding opportunities and experiences against the backdrop of tremendous industry activity,” the spokesperson told Rigzone.

Anyone wanting to work for Shell in the Permian Basin in the future should seek opportunities to expand their knowledge and be willing to adapt quickly to change as the industry grows and evolves, the Shell representative said.

“The oil and gas industry is rife with training and development programs … As new techniques progress and we continue to develop a data-driven oilfield, an expertise in a variety of skillsets will be needed for the future,” the spokesperson told Rigzone.

The ExxonMobil spokesperson highlighted several training programs for those looking to work in the Permian.

“There are oil and gas training programs available at a number of colleges in West Texas and southeast New Mexico, including Midland College, Odessa College, University of Texas of the Permian Basin and New Mexico Junior College,” the Exxon spokesperson said.

“These programs help students develop the skills necessary to succeed in the oil and gas industry,” the spokesperson added.


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