In the realm of energy extraction, the oil and gas industry holds an unparalleled position, commanding the global market and fueling countless aspects of modern life. As the demand for these resources continues to surge, so does the need for skilled professionals who can navigate the complex landscapes of exploration, production, and refinement. In this article, we will inform you about the best paying jobs in oil & gas production for remarkable financial success.
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21 Best Paying Jobs in Oil & Gas Production for Financial Success
When you talk about job opportunities in this sector, there are numerous opportunities as it always has good jobs to offer. There is a high demand for employees in this sector because the complete process of production of oil and gas is complex and requires a lot of labor and technology. Let us begin our list.
1. Project Manager
The major role of the project manager is to oversee the oil projects from beginning to end. They see that the project is working on the track, its budget, specification and keeps an eye that everything is done within the safety guidelines. This is a job of great responsibility, which is why its pay is also relatively high.
The major skills required to become a project manager are good communication, excellent leadership, time management, problem-solving, and much more. Their role isn’t that easy, as they have to take care of the entire execution, direction, implementation, and completion of the projects. They also have to ensure that communication flows between the groups so that the work is done correctly.
In fact, they also have to collaborate with the sector’s engineers and technicians to ensure the project is successful. The average salary of a project manager ranges from $75,000 to $93,000 yearly, depending on the location where you apply.
2. Petroleum & Oil Gas Engineer
This is the best job to opt for if you are looking for a job in this sector that pays well. Their major role is to look for ways to extract oil and gas from the ground in the most cost-effective and efficient manner.
Along with that, it is their job to discover new petroleum reservoirs from where the oil can be extracted. Their major focus is on finding the best, easy, and cost-effective ways of extracting oil so that the company can ensure maximum profits.
To apply for this job, the minimum qualification required is a bachelor’s degree; thus, before applying, keep in mind that this is a mandate for this job. This is mostly a traveling job as the petroleum engineers travel onshore and offshore drilling sites in different regions as they need to work closely with the other engineers and drilling supervisors. The average salary of a petroleum engineer is around $1,30,000 annually.
3. Petroleum Geologist
This is one of the best-paying jobs in oil & gas production, and its demand is seen to be increasing in the coming years. For this job as well, the minimum educational qualification required is a bachelor’s degree, so make sure to have it in your hands before applying for this job. The work of geologists is associated with discovering and producing oil and natural gas deposits.
This is one of the most highly specialized jobs in this sector, as they need to work with advanced technology and software to search oil and gas reservoirs underground. Also, they need to analyze them and give their expert comments on how much oil and gas can be extracted safely.
He has to analyze and check deposits on both land and sea, which needs great expertise. Various things that they need to check on are the structure, composition, etc., of the land they are working on. Their average salary ranges from around $1,00,000 annually.
4. Chemical Engineer
A chemical engineer’s primary duties are to do tests and evaluations to ensure that the organizations are using the right chemicals to transform crude oil and petroleum into usable material. In fact, they also develop and create the right procedures for refining crude oil into useful products such as kerosene and gasoline.
They are among the highest-paid workers in this industry, with their salaries ranging from $70,000 to $85,000 annually, depending on the location. They manage and supervise the chemical process in the company and design tools and equipment that are required for manufacturing and chemical processes in the oil and gas industry.
To apply for a job as a chemical engineer, you need a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering or a similar degree in a related field. They need to work closely with other engineers and scientists to ensure the right transformation and safe storage of raw materials into useful products.
5. Gas Plant Operator
This is a great job to apply for if you want both a great salary and growth. The main role of a gas plant operator is to control and keep track of all the operations related to the gas plant. Furthermore, they are also responsible for the process and distribution of gas for utility companies with the help of compressors that maintains the pressure of the pipelines.
For this, they need to do the reading of the gauge, adjust the valves and operate the machinery to make sure efficiency and safety. The minimum degree required to apply for this job is a high school diploma and on-the-job training.
There can be various additional tasks associated with the main tasks, which include ensuring all the gas plants are operating smoothly; for this, they work in close proximity with other team members. Their average salary ranges from around $55,000 to $70,000 annually.
Cross-reference: The future of work in oil, gas and chemicals
6. Subsea Engineer
A subsea engineer plays an important role in the oil and gas industry as his role is to design and install below-sea equipment. It is said to be the highest paying oil & gas job as they have a salary of around $1,75,000 yearly.
Subsea engineers are experts in offshore and undersea drilling equipment, plus their major duty also includes managing the installation of wall beds. Furthermore, they also need to design structures and processes that are needed for drilling inside or near the ocean.
Other additional things include communicating with contractors, managing supplies, providing support, and problem-solving. Also, as a subsea manager, you will be responsible for planning and reporting on the tasks; thus, this job role requires a diverse set of skills. For this job role, it is important that one should have good communication skills so that one can convey ideas or messages with clarity.
7. Construction Manager
The primary role of a construction manager is to deliver the construction as per compliance with HSE requirements and schedule. Thus, they need to look after the entire construction process, and for this, they need to work closely with the project managers and other related teams.
Various things they need to check for in the construction process are managing coordination between teams and contractors, taking care of construction activities, and planning in a way that the project is completed within time, budget and keeping in mind all the safety measures.
A few skills that are a must in the construction manager are organizational skills, communication and leadership skills, decision-making, and the ability to work in a dynamic environment.
The educational requirements for this job are a minimum bachelor’s degree, and the average salary for this job role is around $1,00,000 annually.
8. Sales Representative
The best thing about applying for the job as a sales representative is that along with the lucrative salary, a lot of companies also offer a commission on every sale you do.
The role of a sales representative and this field is to sell oilfield or petroleum products, equipment, and supplies to both wholesalers and retailers. They also need to negotiate and finalize the deals with potential clients and create excellent marketing strategies.
The products that they sell may include oil and gas supplies, machinery and other related products. They should have in-depth knowledge of the product as they are the ones who need to answer all the queries asked by the clients or customers. One should have at least a bachelor’s degree to apply for this job or any related degree. The average salary of a sales representative is said to be around $60,000 to $65,000 annually.
9. Well Tender
You can also opt for this job if you are looking for the best-paying jobs in oil & gas production. In this job, your role will be to maintain and repair the natural gas wells. Other duties along with this would be to check the wells and see their functionality, address safety measures, and adjust the pressure gauges and valves. In fact, they also need to do safety checks to ensure maximum production levels.
While inspecting the wells, they should identify the potential hazards to avoid mishaps. The minimum qualification required for this job is a high school diploma or a GED certificate to become a well tender.
It will help to advance or flourish in your career if you get some additional certifications related to the field. The highlighting part about this job type is that there is a job growth of around 5 to 8% between 2020 to 2030. The average salary of a well tender is expected to be $44,500 annually.
Not everyone can become a geophysicist, as you need some expert skills and knowledge. Geophysicists are scientists; they study the physical aspects of the earth and rock to comprehend what lies underneath the earth’s surface. They have a vital role in the oil and gas field as it is geophysicist’s who explore and recognize oil and gas deposits.
It is an important role as they keep a check on the research and do the required experiments for studying the earth to find oil. After complete research and observation, they provide the right locations for drilling.
They study different elements such as seismic, measuring various anomalies, understanding the resource potential and gravitational and magnetic waves to get information on where they can find the resources.
To become a geophysicist, you need at least a bachelor’s degree, but if you have a master’s degree, the growth prospects become higher. The average salary of a geophysicist is $75,000 annually.
Cross-reference: Oil Industry Frets About Recruiting Its Next Generation of Workers
11. Mechanical Engineer
The primary role of a mechanical engineer in the oil and gas industry is to support plant equipment and creating, developing, testing installing and maintaining mechanical products and systems which are used for processing oil and gas. Along with all this, they also need to focus on the quality, safety, and reliability of the equipment. Some of the tools they develop are valves, pipelines, turbines, and many more.
In addition, their role is to ensure that all the equipment at the extraction plant is working properly. To apply for this role, one must be updated with the latest technology and have good technical knowledge.
At times, they also need to check the data and provide insights to optimize the performance of the tools. It is among the best-paying jobs in this field, but there will be times when you need to work under pressure, so be prepared.
Along with the perks come a few drawbacks as well. The average salary for this job role lies around $70,000 to $80,000.
12. Drilling Supervisor
As a drilling supervisor, you will have to look after all the drilling operations and ensure that the drilling is finished within the given time. Undoubtedly, it is an important role as drilling plays a major role in natural gas and crude oil industry.
The good thing about this job is that you do not need a bachelor’s degree to apply for this job, unlike other listed jobs in this field. But, there might be a few companies who might ask for a bachelor’s degree or significant experience in the industry; thus, you will have to check before you apply.
This job requires good leadership and time management skills as you must manage and execute the drilling process, from designing to testing and supervising. The average salary of a drilling supervisor ranges from $1,00,000 to $1,10,000.
13. Reservoir Engineer
To become a reservoir engineer, you would need to hold a Petroleum Engineering degree; hence, not everyone can opt for this job opportunity. Their role is to find petroleum in underground reservoirs, and for that, they need to have sound knowledge of geology and fluid mechanics.
They also need to provide information on oil and gas production from old and new fields, which means they need to assess the amount of reserve of petroleum underground.
They are responsible for increasing efficiency and creating plans for better production. For this, they are assigned tasks to manage and operate the gas and oil fields. As their role is to make the best out of the production process, thus, it would be better if they were also good at economic analysis.
The average salary expected for this job role is around $1,20,000 to $1,30,000 annually. It can go up if you have some prior experience working in the oil and gas industry.
14. HSE Manager
In the oil and gas industry, it is pretty essential to check and manage the impact and risk that the environment might have because of the extraction or the entire process. Therefore, the role of an HSE manager is to implement safety programs.
HSE stands for Health, Safety, and Environment Manager; thus, they review and keep themselves and the company updated with HSE policies. According to that, they need to do risk assessments and take preventive measures.
An HSE manager needs to adopt the latest technology and look for new ideas to handle and dump chemical and hazardous waste to maintain fewer carbon footprints. The precautionary measures they take help to ensure the safety of the workers at the site. They inform the top management about all the measures so that they can inform the entire organization or team about the same.
To apply for this job, you need to have a degree in Health, Safety management, or environmental engineering. The average salary of an HSE manager ranges from $90,000 to $1,00,000.
15. Petroleum Engineer
This is one of the highest paying oil & gas jobs, so if you are looking for a job in this sector, this one can be for you. The primary role of this job will be to search for new petroleum reservoirs and discover new and innovative ways to extract oil.
They play an important role in this industry as it is their job to collaborate with specialists, search for new reservoirs, extract petrol in the most efficient and cost-effective ways, and take care of safety measures.
By doing this, they ensure maximum profits and excellent quality, plus doing all this keeping all the environmental factors in mind. In fact, at times, they need to be along with the teams on-site to ensure their safety. The best part about this job is that there is a lot of potential for growth in this, so if you work hard, a better position and salary are waiting for you.
The minimum degree required for this job is a bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering or a related field. The average salary of a petroleum engineer is around $1,00,000 annually.
Cross-reference: As Oil Companies Stay Lean, Workers Move to Renewable Energy
16. Vessel Manager
Here comes yet another important job in the oil and gas industry, and that is of a vessel manager. In this role, the main focus is to check and make sure offshore drilling on oil and petroleum vessels is done safely.
For this job profile, they usually prefer experienced people as they not only supervise but ensure the complete safety of offshore drilling. Along with this, they also train the team members and instruct drilling engineers to assure that the drilling is done safely and correctly.
In fact, they also need to work closely with the safety instructors on-site to ensure that everything is done, keeping in mind the safety measures. The minimum required degree for this job profile is a bachelor’s degree in natural science or a related field. The average salary of a vessel manager varies from $70,000 to $75,000; it can be even more if you have prior experience in the field.
17. Lease Purchase Operator
This job profile might sound new to you, but they have a very important role in this field. They basically need to ensure that the oil and gas transported to and from the drilling sites, gas stations, or processing plants should be done carefully and without any damage. Because of the high responsibility, their salaries are also pretty good.
The lease purchase operators act as a linking pin between the drilling place to the processing site and from there to commercial stations where they are stored and sold, and while in transit, they need to ensure complete safety. There are various things that they need to check on, such as
- Firstly, there should be no cracks or wear and tear on the delivery vehicle.
- Next, they should check the fittings, separations, or damage on the vehicle, which might lead to damage to the oil or gas.
- They also check the tools that are used for drilling or refining the product.
The minimum qualification required to apply for this job is a high school diploma or bachelor’s degree in a related field, plus you also need to possess some advanced training in the mechanical system. The average salary in this field is around $1,00,000.
18. Production Engineer
This job role comes with many responsibilities, which is why the salary is also paid accordingly, i.e., relatively high. The primary responsibility will be to ensure that the production is completed on time.
Another thing they need to do is design and choose well tools to bring to production once the drilling is done. Along with that, a production engineer needs to ensure that all the process and functionality are done keeping the safety measures in mind.
They need to be multi-taskers, as they might need to do a lot of things at one time. It is their job to keep a check on the well as it flows to be sure that it is efficient and perfect for commercial use.
To apply for this job, you need to have a minimum bachelor’s degree plus, it would be helpful if you possess leadership skills as it will help you do your job better. The salary of a production manager is $1,00,000 annually on average; this may vary as per location, education, and experience.
19. Environmental Manager
By now, you must have got an understanding that drilling and extracting oil is not an easy task, plus there are numerous environmental risks along with it. This is where the role of environmental managers comes into the picture, as they ensure that the extraction process does not harm the environment in any way by taking all the safety measures and following compliance.
Because of climate change, oil production guidelines and practices have come under scrutiny in recent years. Thus, every organization needs environmental managers to mitigate that involves risk and ensure sustainable and efficient extraction by following all the rules and regulations.
For this, they need to examine plans and procedures, check pipelines regularly for any leaks or damage, check for any potential environmental risk involved, and give their expert advice on reducing it. The average salary of an environmental manager ranges from $1,00,000 to $1,10,000.
20. Rig Welder
This can be a great option for anyone looking for the best-paying jobs in oil & gas production. The best thing is that the minimum education qualification required to apply for this job is just a high school diploma. Rig welder job is usually on-site as they work on oil rigs; these are the huge platforms that are made to do oil drilling, processing, and storage.
They play a vital role in the industry as their work involves using tools and equipment to weld metals on a rig, such as making beams, pipe construction, etc. Plus, they also need to take care of their storage and maintenance as well.
They are key personnel who are involved in strengthening the infrastructure that is important to extract oil and gas. The average salary of a rig welder ranges from $45,000 to $60,000.
Cross-reference: America’s Oil And Gas Jobs Could Soon Come Roaring Back
This is yet again a very interesting and high-paying job in this industry. The primary role of an oceanographer is to keep a check, analyze and forecast the condition of the ocean for exploration of oil and gas activities. They need to study the ocean, and the skills required for this job profile are as follows.
- Strong observational skills and an enquiring mind
- Doing the right research, requires an accurate and methodical strategy.
- Patience in conducting experiments numerous times.
- To analyze and explain experiments, mathematics and statistics skills are a must.
- Skills to use different kinds of equipment and technology.
The experts in the job profile check the development of the potential sites and support the maintenance of tools, equipment and process involved in operations.
Is Oil and Gas production industry good for career growth?
This is a great field to start your career, as numerous career opportunities come with excellent salaries, additional perks, and growth prospects. Salaries in this sector are higher than in various other industries.
The educational requirement for this job is usually a bachelor’s degree, but it can vary from job to job, such as you must be physically fit to work on an oil rig, plus you should have a good knowledge of technology, repair, and other involved mechanics.
The oil and gas industry continues to be a driving force in the global economy, and for professionals seeking both financial prosperity and meaningful careers, it presents a wealth of opportunities. While the path to these high-paying positions may require dedication, expertise, and years of experience, the potential rewards are unmatched.
As the demand for oil and gas continues to rise, the need for skilled professionals in production will remain steadfast, ensuring a steady stream of rewarding opportunities for those willing to embark on this journey.
Here are some common questions asked regarding jobs in this sector.
Q1. What are the primary skills required to apply for a job in the oil and gas industry?
A1. Although the skills differ as per the industry or job profile, the basic skills needed are communication and leadership skills, refinery management, adaptability, project management skills, time management, global thinking, and problem-solving.
Q2. Is there too much traveling in the jobs in this sector?
A2. There are many jobs that require a lot of traveling as you need to work on-site, but you can also opt for jobs with less traveling where you need to work from your base location.
Q3. Which countries offer the best jobs in the oil and gas industry?
A3. Some of the countries that offer the best jobs in this industry are China, Russia, Australia, Indonesia, Denmark, and the Philippines.
Q4. What is the oil and gas production industry?
A4. They play a significant role in the energy market and have an influential role in the world economy. The functionality involved in producing and distributing petrol and gas is complex, requires updated technology, and is capital-intensive.