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Making your mark overseas

Making your mark overseas

In an industry where the majority of employment opportunities are global, Oil and Gas professionals have a fantastic chance to gain experience across multiple countries. Working overseas can add real value to your career and it is an increasingly popular move in the sector. If you’re considering working overseas, here are a few tips on how you can really make your mark:

  • Be flexible with location. There’s a common trait for many candidates looking for a role abroad to be picky with location. It’s important to bear in mind that this move is for the benefit of your career rather than for a vacation, and you could be limiting your options by dictating where you would be happy to work. If you make it clear to your recruiter that you’re open to working in any location, you’re more likely to see success.
  • Be realistic. Perhaps one of the biggest challenges for recruiters looking to place candidates is in the expectations of the candidate versus the local talent availability. Remember, the experience you can get in international roles will be hugely valuable in your career progression, but the culture and expectations will vary across borders. If you’re unsure what is and isn’t realistic for your job opportunities, seek advice from a specialist recruiter.
  • Highlight your niche skills. If you’ve trained and worked as an expat before, it’s likely that you will have developed a niche skills set which might be limited in supply for the area you’re looking to move to. Consider what your key ‘sell’ is and look at where the global opportunities would be for you. In the oil and gas sector in particular, many of the key international locations are in need of senior level skills, so be sure to highlight any.
  • Demonstrate the value add you can have. There’s clearly a trend in improving cost efficiency across the globe so make sure you can outline the added value employing you would bring to the company.
  • Tailor your message to the area. Make sure you do your research in advance and demonstrate how your skills fit in with the gaps in the area and perhaps in the company itself.
  • Show you are able to develop a team. Companies will want to demonstrate how they are growing the skills of the local talent market and its current workforce. If this is something you have previous experience doing make sure you highlight this in order to gain a competitive advantage.

Working as an expat in any country will add real value to your career development, but remember that the market is getting tougher, particularly for Western talent. To really compete with the growing local talent, you have to build your personal brand and messages. If you follow the tips above you’ll be better placed to compete in a global market – but remember, if you are unsure of any move abroad, make sure you speak to a specialist recruiter for advice.

Good luck!

Guest blog written by Alan Darling, Energy Practice Manager of ReThink Energy

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Marketing You

Marketing is a rapidly changing field, highly technology reliant and regularly evolving into new concepts with a plethora of keywords. However, the principles and justifications for marketing generally stay the same. We as marketing professionals want to do one thing well, communicate. The common misconception is that sales, brand awareness and all the other marketing benefits are the only consideration. They are not, they are just the end result of communicating in a way which demonstrates understanding of the environment and the understanding of those who you want to hear and understand your messages. What that ‘something’ is can be pretty much whatever you want it to be; a new product or service, a brand message, a customer service campaign, a job advert. Or a job application?

When a hiring manager or recruitment professional decides on recruitment activity (the advertising and positioning of the advert, selling the company and package etc) they do so using a number of highly specific marketing principles, whether they know they do this or not is another question but I suspect some do not. They will have been briefed about what personality is required for any given role, what sort of skill set is required, what qualifications that person is likely to have and what level of prior experience is needed. The result of this is that they already have their perfect candidate in their head and the job spec and advert is written based on this image. Their job is to communicate the requirement in the best way possible to ensure the return on investment is as close to ‘the perfect candidate’ as possible.

So how does an applicant market themselves?

Your personal marketing plan is something which you might not have given much thought to but with every application, you as the candidate wittingly or unwittingly engage in the very same marketing principles. At least half of all failing applications do so based on the poor understanding of how to market yourself as a candidate to the specifics of the role and organisation as opposed to overall unsuitability.

When you decide to apply for a role, you and the recruiter enter a unique marketing relationship where you both need to communicate the correct messages in order to achieve what you both want, a successful hire. As the candidate your primary focus should begin with the job specification, you must research and identify the industries, companies, cultures and roles that you will be suitable for and will enjoy, these are your targets. Discipline here often pays off, if you can ensure you spend more time writing applications to organisations you are interested in and for roles that you will enjoy then your applications will be natural and honest and more transparent.

Marketers target their communication; they design content for specific demographics of their customer base that is designed to elicit a response. Ensuring you re-write your CV and cover letter to address the specific qualifications and experiences (make use of keywords) established in the job advert is important. However, highlighting individual achievements within specific tasks and experiences that will prove your performance levels were higher than the average is how you ensure the recruiter selects your CV to read in more detail. You do not need to list your all-time greatest achievements just emphasise the ones relevant to this role. Ensuring any online presence matches your written application is important for consistency; if you received marketing communications that presented a different message in one medium than they did in another, you would be disappointed.

Make the most of your network, using job boards is a great way to make a professional public profile however if you don’t regularly update the information and engage with people via these platforms, they stagnate and will have to be hastily fixed when the time comes to make applications. Making the most of your network can be a great inroad to a position that you would not normally have been able to identify. Furthermore you need to measure what is working and what is not. If you get the chance to ask for feedback then do so, but make sure you take it on board and address it for future efforts.

So finding a job is marketing then?

Communication is the key to you achieving success in your job search. You must present yourself as the best solution to the problem for that organisation (the problem being the open vacancy). If you are guilty of applications with a ‘one size fits all’ CV and cover letter clichés such as the ‘determined individual’ or surprise surprise; ‘I am a good communicator’, then you should reconsider your tactics.

My challenge to you is to change your job hunting habits, to prove yourself with communication and marketing principles that focus on quality not quantity. If you limit the number of applications you make but spend the same amount of time making the few as you would making the many, you will allow yourself to find the right opportunity. Read more into the role, research the company culture, identify the areas of responsibility you can excel at and credibly highlight and present a relevant application that is harder to ignore. Alternatively, you can run the risk of becoming the ‘spam marketing’ of applications, the unsolicited and unjustified attempt that only goes down as poorly targeted and poorly communicated. Ultimately, forgotten.


Matt Thomas is Marketing Associate for Quarsh, a leading RPO and Talent Warehousing organisation. He regularly contributes to the Quarsh Blog on matters such as social media and employer branding.

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At, the leading online jobs board for the global oil and gas industry, our objective is to provide recruiters and organisations with the best quality candidates for a variety of positions spanning the entire oil and gas supply chain.


That’s why at the Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) in Houston earlier this year (the world’s foremost event in the oil industry calendar and the chance to target the best talent across the sector) the team decided it was a perfect opportunity to show off our creative side.


We were determined to find a way to make our booth stand out from the crowd of almost 2,000 exhibitors and reach out to the 90,000 visitors attending.


After much brainstorming we decided upon a traffic lights party concept. Popular in US youth culture and extending to UK campuses, it’s a dating game where the colour you wear or the cup you drink from, signals your intentions:


Red – not available

Yellow – could be tempted

Green – open to offers


So close is the relationship between employee and job, the traffic lights concept was entirely relevant, capturing the spirit of youth and creating something that attendees would want to get involved in.

Therefore we adapted the concept and did it the way:


Red – happy in your job

Yellow – could be tempted to move – make an offer

Green – actively looking


Free soft drinks and cup sleeves (or ‘koozies’) were offered in red, amber or green reusable cups, backed up by a survey and disruptive media including three interpretive dancers dressed in red, green and amber morph suits which caused quite a stir, creating an enormous amount of attention and interest from those in attendance.


It achieved a level of engagement that was beyond even our expectations.

Not only did dwell time on the stand increase ten-fold with all members of staff having fruitful conversations with delegates, but over the course of the four days 1,500 cups were issued and the global overall traffic to increased by 55% from 162,946 visits during the same week in 2011 to 251,776 in 2012 with 30,000 US visitors, up from 19,000 the previous year.


It is with this success in mind that we enter the Onrec awards, the awards ceremony for the UK online recruitment industry, in the category for The Creative Online Marketing Award By a Niche.


Wish us luck!

| More launches app! Launches New Job Search app


The new app is now available to download for free from the iTunes app Store. The app is compatible with all iPads, iPhones and iPod touches. In less than twelve months has seen its mobile traffic drastically grow from 7% to 17.3% of total traffic – that’s more than 1.6 million visits.


The app delivers the fundamentals of job hunting. It enables job seekers to search jobs by keywords and location, browse jobs, read job descriptions, then save favourites and email them to their inbox.


Managing Director, Mark Guest, said: “As the world’s most popular oil and gas recruitment site, we’ve spent years understanding job seeker behaviour and the job hunting process. This new app is a powerful tool for any job seeker. It has an easy to use interface giving job seekers another way to access up to 20,000 live vacancies while on the go or offshore.”


According to the Mobile Marketing Association Asia, more people in the world own a mobile phone than a toothbrush! Get downloading now. Click here to download the new app.

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New US Radio Campaign! invest over £1m in a Global marketing strategy to insure we continually attract new Oil and Gas candidates and we are the “Giant in Oil & Gas Recruitment”


This week, we are launching a new radio advertising campaign which will air in Houston on KTRH – Click here to listen to our new US Radio Campaign! head of marketing, Karen Scott, said: “As the world’s most popular Oil & Gas recruitment site, we are dedicated to connecting the right people with the right jobs.  Radio is a fantastic medium for connecting with a wide audience.  The theme of our new campaign is “Supersize Your Career “which will capture listener’s attention while they are driving in the car or listening at home.”


Have you had a bad day in the office? Are you looking for a change? Would you like to earn more cash? With over 20,000 vacancies from the world’s largest Oil & Gas employers, and recruiters, there’s never been a better time to register your resume on and start searching for your next career move.  We have a diverse range of exciting opportunities including Drilling Engineers, Geoscientists, Mechinists, Analysts, Document Controllers, Administrators Assistants and much more.  For your chance to Win an iPad register now!

Click here to listen to our new US Radio Campaign!

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Air Energi Global Workforce 2012

Latest and Air Energi Global Workforce Survey Results Announced


While the global oil and gas industry is experiencing a resurgence of activity, both employers and employees face a plethora of challenges, according to a joint report from, the international job board for the oil and gas industry, in association with partner Air Energi, a global provider of manpower solutions to the energy sector.


Focusing on employment and salary trends in the energy sector throughout 2012 the report, entitled ‘The Global Oil & Gas Workforce Survey: Expectations for hires and pay rates in the oil and gas industry H2 2012’, addresses the issues affecting the oil and gas industry and what they mean for the second half of 2012.


The survey, now one of the most eagerly anticipated temperature checks of global employers’ perceptions of the energy industry, found operators and contractors have a largely positive outlook about the numerous, major projects underway or planned worldwide. Yet the research highlighted much concern over access to those with the necessary skills, a shortage of specific disciplines and pressure caused by local content regulations.


More than 170,000 oil and gas professionals were invited to participate from over 50 countries within the seven major oil and gas producing regions.


Mark Guest, managing director of, said: “Despite significant economic challenges facing the global energy industry, the survey signals a positive outlook for the sector with both mature and developing producing regions providing good reasons for continuing confidence and future optimism.


“Local content regulations – where foreign operators are required to prove they have made every effort to recruit from local sources and to use indigenous business channels – are however proving particularly challenging in a number of regions including Africa, the Americas and parts of Australasia.


“Internationally, operators are embarking on a large number of major investments, benefitting greatly from technological advancements. Yet major challenges remain with access to skilled labour a pivotal concern, combined with a global shortage of those with the necessary experience to help companies fully realise the potential of these opportunities.”


Ian Langley, group executive chairman for Air Energi, said: “The global flow of labour is a highly complex equation that has historically been answered through just-in-time solutions, largely dictated by the price of oil. Operators are taking a global approach to hiring practices, while proactively recruiting or reassigning talent as it becomes available.


“Many have stated the importance of looking to the young stream of professionals entering the industry, and the need to provide young graduates with internships and other opportunities. Field experience and a succession of short-term global assignments have also been observed as successful methods. Fast-tracking may help, but there are no shortcuts to hands-on experience.”


Click here to download the full Global Workforce Survey


| More Shortlisted for the Asia Pacific Global Recruiter Awards

 Shortlisted for the Asia Pacific Global Recruiter Awards


We’re thrilled to announce that has reached the finals of The Global Recruiter Asia Pacific Recruitment Industry Awards for the Best Job Board category. The competition is fierce and this is great recognition of our team’s hard work and our on-going commitment to providing excellent customer service.


We look forward to the results being announced at the gala awards dinner on the 6th September in the incredible Marina Bay complex in Singapore. The event will bring together the recruitment industry in and around Singapore, Hong Kong, Australia, Japan and other Asia Pacific jurisdictions.


Click here for further information or to book tickets.

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Proud to be sponsoring Australia Gas Technology














 is proud to be sponsoring the inaugural Australia Gas Technology (AGT) event, which takes place in the Perth Convention Exhibition Centre this week from July 25 -27. Visitors will arrive at the show on the shuttle bus.


The event focuses on the LNG industry particularly gas processing and the construction and operation of LNG facilities, associated pipelines and export terminals. It includes a conference, trade exhibition, Innovation awards and a Careers and Education initiative.

AGT Event Director, Bill Hare said “Australia is poised to become the world’s leading LNG exporter by 2020 and this growth is driving an extraordinary range of innovative products, projects and technologies.” Australia Country Manager Jackie Kirk, who is at the show, said: “AGT Perth is a fantastic opportunity to meet with industry leaders and attend networking events.”

“With conference speakers from Chevron , Woodside and Shell, is branding itself alongside the major operators here in Perth. Various speakers are addressing the skills shortage challenges facing the industry and students and mature age workers have the opportunity to hear presentations and identify career paths within the oil and gas industry.”


According to the federal government, Australia needs an additional 90,000 workers over the next four years. recently opened two new offices in Australia, one in Perth and one in Brisbane making us best placed to work with leading oil and gas employers in Australia. Our research indicates demand for geologists, engineers, project managers and senior designers is at an all-time high. If you’re interested in immigrating to Australia, click here to see our Australian vacancies.



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Happy Independance Day











Happy Independence Day

Today, our Houston office will be closed to celebrate Independence Day. We would like to wish all of our valued customers a very happy Fourth of July.


The City of Houston is celebrating with a day of street parades, cook outs, live music and a sensational fireworks display in Eleanor Tinsley Park at the Mayor’s Freedom Over Texas event.


The team will be back in the office tomorrow to help you find the perfect oil and gas candidates. Enjoy the celebrations!

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GPS Traffic Lights


There’s a phenomenon sweeping North American counter culture and making an impact on college campuses world wide, the traffic lights party.

Not been to one? Well there’s no need to worry as is bringing its traffic lights party to Global Petroleum Show (GPS), Calgary 12-14 June 2012, booth 8054.

Hot on the heels of success at the Offshore Technology Conference in Houston, visitors will once again be asked to signal their career intentions and rate their job satisfaction.

Whether you are in a job, or looking for one, the traffic lights party takes a refreshing approach to your career development. The rules are really simple – all you have to do is take a drink and we will do the rest!

So how we do know what you are thinking? It’s quite easy really, as the colour of cup you take your soda in says it all….

Red – ‘I really love my job’

Amber – ‘excite me and I will consider it’

Green – ‘I could be just what you are looking for’

If a drink is not for you then take part in our interactive survey or speak to member of the team who can offer the best advice for you and your career development.

We will also be at the Global Energy Career Expo at the Calgary Telus Convention Centre on 13 and 14 June, where again you can get the benefit of expert advice and even meet some of the industries key recruitment consultants.

Recruiters – watch out for the cups as it’s the best way for you to spot potential candidates on the show floor and beyond – we have already had cups spotted at two international airports!

We look forward to seeing you at GPS and finding out what colour you really are!

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Disclaimer: Any views here do not necessarily reflect the views of OilCareers Ltd. As such we cannot be held responsible for the views expressed here or any actions taken as a consequence.