The oil and gas sector has been a significant contributor to the global economy at large. For decades altogether, the sector has been booming. In fact, in the US alone, oil production has significantly increased from 1.7 million BPD at the beginning of 2019 to 1.2 million by the end of October, as per the Energy Information Administration (EIA).
To add to this, the production of Natural gas has substantially risen as well, to 99.1 Bcf/d at the end of October—about 95 Bcf/d, of which is from dry natural gas—up from 91.3 Bcf/d this time last year for total US Natural gas production.
This is merely the tip of the iceberg. The demand for oil and gas has constantly been rising exponentially, which makes the sector a perfect hotspot for many lucrative job avenues. As per the Bureau of Labour Statics, around 150,000 people were directly or indirectly involved in the oil and gas industry.
All this contributes to the desirability of the best-paying jobs in oil and gas production. Let us read about some of these jobs which can help you form a robust career.
Benefits of working in the industry
See below why this industry is a lucrative working option for professionals.
Higher than-average wages
The oil and gas industry is one of the most promising sectors in the global economy. That being said, the sector has enough job profits for suitable candidates with relevant experience and educational background. The wages offered are higher than average, with other lucrative benefits and incentives.
The sector inclines heavily in favor of skills that are developed over a period of time in the industry. Candidates who want to hone one particular skill over their core skills can look for advancement in this sector.
Travel opportunities, both domestic and abroad, are fairly common for people working in this sector. Having said this, people who love to work and travel can go for a career in this sector.
The sector employs the latest and state-of-the-art technology for resource mapping and excavation. People who want to research to use the latest technology can definitely think of building a career here.
List of best-paying jobs in the oil and gas production
Having looked upon the amazing growth and the demography of the workforce directly/ indirectly engaged in the oil and gas sector, we now look in great detail at the many top-paying jobs that the sector has to offer to those who wish to make a living out of it:
Their main key area of expertise lies in supervising the various drilling operations of a project. They sometimes serve as an intermediary between the management and the operations team, overlooking the drilling operations and making sure that the deliverables are within the deadlines.
Estimated salary lies between the range of $75,000 – 85,000 per year with companies such as Offshore Drilling.
The job can expect people from diverse backgrounds with good working knowledge of their profiles.
Their key responsibility areas include a survey of important areas of oil and gas deposits that are spread across the entire geography. They are tasked with not only identifying such areas but best drilling practices and methodologies as well to ensure minimal resources on excavation while ensuring the best yields.
Estimated salary lies within the bracket of $150,000 – $160,000 per year.
The job is highly technical in nature, which is why people with technical backgrounds are best suited.
The profile of a geophysicist deals with understanding the physical aspect of the geology of the landforms and determining what lies beneath their surface. Just like the role of a petroleum geologist, this job profile also deals with the theoretical aspect, and the Estimated salary is approx $70,000 – $80,000 per year.
Land Acquisition Specialist
As the name suggests, the role of a land acquisition specialist involves proper planning and survey to determine the land fit for drilling and excavating oil and gas resources. The role thus becomes critical as finding the right place to drill gets half the job done.
Practical experience becomes of significant importance in this job profile, which is why the salary ranges between $45,000 – $107,500 per year.
The primary job responsibility of the lease operator is that of ensuring that the oil and gas which is excavated are safely transported between drilling sites, processing plants, and gas stations without loss and damage.
The estimated salary for the said profile is approx $52,000 per year, and it accepts people from supply chain and logistics backgrounds.
The job profile of a Completions Engineer is very critical in the oil and gas industry as the concerned person is responsible for meeting timelines and deadlines. The duties include monitoring the good assembly, analyzing the complications that may arise out of structural or procedural infirmities, and resolving them beforehand.
Estimated salary ranges between $96,00 – $166,000 per year.
People with management backgrounds are generally suited for the said role.
Managing people in the oil and gas industry requires an HR person to handle and tackle the grievances of people in various roles. They are responsible for developing company policies and ensuring they adhere to conducting employee investigations, managing payroll, and ensuring statutory compliance.
The estimated salary is approx $75,000 for the said profile.
Sales and Business Representative
Sales profiles in the oil and gas industry are among the highest-paying job roles as they are responsible for bringing in business for the industry. They pitch finished petroleum products to wholesale and retail partners. A degree in sales and marketing is the most preferred one for the said job role.
The estimated salary ranges between $60,000 – $70,000 per year, excluding variable pay and bonuses.
Gas Plant Operator
Categorized as one of the best-paying jobs, this role is quite technical and nuanced in nature. This is because it comes with a lot of specifics pertaining to maintaining and transferring oil and gas for companies at compressed pressure and temperature.
The estimated salary is approx $45,00 per year.
They are tasked with ensuring that offshore drilling on the various oil and petroleum vessels is safely operated, keeping in mind the various safety protocols and regulations.
The estimated salary for this job profile is $70,000 per year.
People with a bachelor’s degree in nautical science with practical training in fleet management are considered suitable for this job position.
These are one of the most reputable and best-paying job profiles in the oil and gas industry. They have a proper working knowledge of the various chemical that can be used to transform raw oil products into useful materials in the industry.
They collaborate with other professional engineers at various stages to deliver the best results.
The estimated salary is anywhere between $70,000 – $80,000 per year. People with a degree in chemical engineering are highly desirable for this job profile.
Their day-to-day responsibilities include supervising the production process in the oil and gas industry. They design and implement well equipment keeping in view that all safety protocols are taken into account. They also monitor the flow of the well to ensure smooth and streamlined flow.
The estimated pay range for this job profile is between $70,000 – $80,000 per year. A professional engineering degree is a necessary requirement for this job role.
It is one of the best-paying jobs in the oil and gas industry mainly because a rig welder is a key player in the operational aspect of oil and gas excavation. They work on giant structures called oil rigs that are erected to carry out drilling, processing, and storing of oil gas.
They also use specialized equipment for welding metals on the rig.
The estimated salary ranges between $46,000 – $101,000 per year, and a diploma in metals and metallurgy is a requirement for this profile.
The primary job responsibilities of a tank cleaner are to ensure that the oil tank is clean and free of impurities at all times before and after use. With great advancements, knowledge of modern cleaning equipment is required, such as pressurized brooms, vats, kettles, chutes, and so on.
The estimated salary lies between the range of $25,00 – $37,000 per year. The profile is open to people from any educational background with a brief practical experience in a similar field.
As a well tender, your main job responsibilities include the overall upkeep of natural gas wells, that is, their maintenance and repair. They need to inspect regular checks for the proper functionality of oil wells, adjust pressure gauges and address safety violations, if any, to ensure high standards.
Estimated salary ranges between $32,000 – $50,000 per year, and a high school diploma is sufficient to apply for this position. Career advancements by means of additional qualifications and certifications are possible.
It is one of the best-paying jobs in this industry. A project manager is an important player who is the specific person in contact with any project on their table. He reviews the project timelines and deliverables, ensures that the budget of the project is well within the defined limits, and manages project reports falling.
The estimated salary lies in the range of $85,000 – $100,000 per year. A certification in project management is required to pursue a career in this field.
Their job responsibilities include managing rig staff, overseeing the management of oil wells, and ensuring that the safety protocols are adhered to. They also overlook the financial and technical operations of oil and gas excavation.
The estimated salary is approx $155,000, and an engineering degree is most relevant when it comes to pursuing a career in this field.
It is one of the best-paying jobs in the oil and gas industry. They support the structural design of the oil plant installation and maintenance of oil rigs and wells. By doing so, they ensure that there is no room for error when it comes to the operational aspect of the project.
Their pay ranges between $70,000 – $80,000 per year, according to the role. A degree in mechanical engineering is a necessary educational requirement before applying for this job position.
The job role of a civil engineer is similar to that of a mechanical engineer in many aspects. Civil engineers are responsible for designing oil and gas plants on paper and ensuring that the actual construction is in conformity with their designs.
It is necessary to ensure that the structural drawings and designs are in conformity with the statutory guidelines.
The estimated salary ranges between $90,000 – $100,000 per year. A degree in civil engineering is required to pursue a career in this field.
It is one of the best-paying jobs in oil and gas production as it is said that data is the new oil. Data scientists are responsible for managing raw data and converting it into a more coherent structure. They extrapolate their data to search for new viable sites for oil and gas. The estimated salary lies in the range of $100,000 – $120,000. Being a purely theoretical field, degrees or certifications in data science become of paramount importance before setting foot in this field.
Having looked at the multiple job opportunities with the best pay that the oil and gas industry has to offer to those who wish to pursue a career in the said industry, it goes without saying that the industry is indeed a welcoming one, just like the Energy Industry.
People from diverse backgrounds, both freshers and experienced alike, venture into this domain to enjoy the benefits of the best-paying jobs in oil and gas production every year. While doing so, they are amazed by the plethora of career options and advancements that the industry offers. In the end, it boils down to your present interest and inclinations.
While some jobs require a basic high school degree, certain others require a full-time professional degree. Furthermore, the person has an added advantage if they have relevant years of experience on their resume.
So go through the detailed job descriptions of the jobs that interest you, update your resume, fold up your sleeves, and get going. A great career awaits you in the oil and gas industry.
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