How to Get a High Paying Job in The Oil and Gas Well Drilling Industry

Growth Trends for Related Jobs

The oil and gas industry are booming right now and with worldwide demand for energy coming up against dwindling resources there is no end in sight. There are employment opportunities for people from all backgrounds with salaries from $50,000 to $200,000 and up even for people with no college degree.

When you think of the oilfield you might think of guys covered with oil working the tongs and pulling pipe out of a hole in the ground. There is a lot more to it now and many opportunities for people from all walks of life to make a decent living. Oil rigs offshore need everything from cooks to welders to keep them going. Identify what skills you have and decide what area of the industry you might fit into. If you have technical and electronic skills then you might find work at a company like Pason that maintains the computers and monitoring systems and sensors that record the rigs progress and transmit data via satellite to company offices across the globe. If you have any trade skills such as welding there are many openings. If you are a licensed boat captain there are crew boat captain jobs out there. If you have an interest in geology then you might find work and on the job training as a Mud Logger, who catches, washes and inspects the rock cuttings coming up from the bit for sign of oil. If you are strong and energetic you might start as a roustabout, doing odd jobs on the rig, and work your way up to the rig floor crew. If you have a good work ethic, a high school education and a willingness to learn you could be making six figures after a couple of years as you work your way up the ladder and learn new skills. Salesmen are needed as well to sell drill bits and equipment, so if you have the gift of gab and like to travel there is work to be had.

Books such as "As Primer to Oilwell Drilling" are helpful to get a sense of what the industry is all about. You can find it in the links below. Check sites like and the websites of local newspapers in oil producing areas such as Casper Wyoming, Midland Texas, Houston and Oklahoma City.

Once you have found your niche start firing off resumes. Cold calling works too. It's how I got my job. I walked into an oil services company and asked if they were hiring. For more oilfield employment resources and job postings see the sites in the resource section below.


Be prepared to travel. This is not a job for home bodies unless you work in oil production at a specific site. You usually will be far from home for days or weeks on a rig in a remote location. The payoff is in high salary and some crews work two weeks on and two weeks off.


Be single our have a good relationship. The odd work hours and long hitches have caused many a divorce. Be prepared to work hard and work in adverse weather conditions as well as work for demanding supervisors. An oil rig cost thousands per hour to operate and slackers are unwanted.


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