October 2014: Charming Young Talent

2014-10_New_JOBSWhen it comes to attracting professionals – new or seasoned—to the oil and gas industry companies know to pay up or lose desired candidates. But compensation aside, there are ways for companies to compete to lure the best talent.

Rigzone’s discussed the skills gap, also called the Great Crew Change, which exists today as the Baby Boom generation of oil and gas professionals retire and new talent slowly enters the industry. So how can companies lure the next wave of energy professionals?

Rigzone surveyed nearly 300 young oil and gas professionals in the Generation Y/Millennial category and asked them what attributes, compensation aside, they looked for in a potential employer. The results highlight three major areas: education/training, health and wellness and company culture.

While they do not have the same experience or breadth of knowledge as the more seasoned professionals, the new “crop” of young talent has a fervent interest in learning. Coming in at number one on the list to attract young professionals is access to professional training and development opportunities. Whether that be in the form of challenging work assignments (#3), a mentor (#13) or even a position relocation to another country (#4), millennials are looking for an employment opportunity that will help them mature and develop the skills they need to succeed in the industry, helping oil and gas companies in the long run.

Ranked number two on the list, a company’s focus on keeping its talent safe is of high priority, particularly for entry-level candidates. A recent GE study surveyed university students interested in working in oil and gas and found that 30 percent thought the biggest issue facing the industry today was safety. Safety should be table stakes in the industry, however the company which shows an increased awareness and methods to go above and beyond what’s required will surely attract the attention of new oil and gas professionals.

Health and wellness is also a major attribute that young professionals look to when weighing their potential employment options. Programs, such as subsidized gym memberships, an in-office yoga studio, or a bike-sharing program, are also enticing benefits millennials appreciate when assessing their job prospects.

Professionals often say that what makes or breaks a job is the company culture, and this comes as no exception in the oil and gas industry. For young professionals, it’s a work environment that inspires creative thinking (#6) and collaboration (#9). Working in an open workspace with friendly and hardworking colleagues (#10) is also attractive.

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Bertie Taylor,
Vice President, Content