Industry Survey Finds Uptick in Expected Hiring and Salaries in Next 12 Months

Since the price of oil crashed in 2014, it is estimated that more than 440,000 jobs have been cut in the sector worldwide. However, with the price of oil having stabilized since July this year, new research by recruiter NES Global Talent and shows that almost 90% of employers expect staffing levels to either increase or remain the same in 2018.

The survey showed that in total almost 60% of employers expect to recruit significantly over the next 12 months. Of those almost a quarter (23%) of employers expect to increase their workforce by 5%; almost a fifth (19%) expect to increase staffing by between 5 and 10%; and more than a sixth (17%) by more than 10%.

Almost a third (30%) of employers expect staffing levels to remain the same and just 11% of employers expect to cut jobs.

More than than 3,000 employers and almost 7,000 workers were surveyed as part of the recruiter’s Oil and Gas Outlook 2017 report.

Results of Industry survey of 10,000 participants across more than 20 disciplines from 158 countries

Job Ads

The companies advertising the highest volume of jobs in 2017 to the end of July are Halliburton, Amec Foster Wheeler, Baker Hughes, CB&I, and Chevron.

89% of employers expect staffing levels to stay the same or increase in the next 12 months.


Almost 60% of employers expect to recruit significantly over the next 12 months.


Almost half of employers expect salaries to rise.

Skills Shortage

Employers recognize skills shortages as a hugely important issue and project management consultancy organizations stand out as proactively investing in this area.

Knowledge Transfer

43% point to inadequate succession planning and knowledge transfer as a reason for the skills shortage.

Job Change

20% of respondents have changed jobs this year.

Tig Gilliam, CEO of NES Global Talent, said, “Globally we are now increasingly confident that the market supports increased investment in the energy sector. Energy companies with the support of their partners have right-sized their organizations for the current levels of activity. With a stabilized price environment and lower cost profile more and more assets offer attractive returns on investment and operations. This increasing activity is leading the higher-performing companies to refocus on recruiting quality people to lead and deliver value.

“While this activity is being led by a sharp increase in investment in US shale, there has also been an uptick in capital projects being approved which will positively impact the industry across all regions. With our own staff operating in over 60 countries, the increasingly positive tone of our clients and contractors is a welcome signal of the turnaround in the market and the participants in this survey echo that sentiment.”

Alex Fourlis, managing director of, said, “There is a sense of positivity throughout the guide the likes of which we haven’t seen since 2013 and can be read as an indication of a potential stabilization of the oil market. This is key to kick-start projects that haven’t been viable for a while and will have a positive effect on job volume and salaries across the industry. Comparing the number of jobs posted throughout the industry YTD to the end of July vs. the same period in 2016, there has been a 2% increase year on year with jobs from corporates up by 8%.”



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