Since you found this site, I’m working with the assumption you are looking for oil rig jobs requiring no experience. In this article I want to look at the best approach for getting your foot in the door for entry level oil rig jobs.
I work every day trying to help people solve a problem. What that means to you…is that I have spent a considerable amount of time researching this topic. For one…I enjoy doing that kind of work, and for another…it’s easy for me. So let me share with you some of my discoveries.
I want to be realistic with you. It is somewhat misleading to say you need no experience. Every job you ever look for will require some level of experience. Employers don’t just higher people because they need a job. And that is no different for oil rig employment.
Saying that, there are ways of getting started in this industry. I’ll call these trainee oil rig jobs. They are the places people start to build into a long term career.
What are your current skills?
Some of you may be looking for offshore oil rig jobs. If you have worked in food prep, electrical, mechanical repair, painting, scaffolding, mariner positions, or welding…then you will already have experience that will qualify you for better oil rig paying jobs. And that is especially true if you are looking for an offshore position.
However, if you desire to be part of the well paid deck or drilling crew, then you more than likely will have to start on a land based oil rig job to begin with. And there are plenty of opportunities in this area.
Entry Level Positions
The two common positions are known as Roustabouts and Roughnecks. The Roustabout is an assistant to the Roughnecks. Roustabouts are responsible for material handling with cranes, keeping the deck tidy, and generally giving a hand where needed. These positions would be considered the trainee oil rig jobs.
A good rig worker could easily grow into a Roughneck position. The Roughnecks are responsible for the drilling. They are the head of the spear so to speak. Their role is why an oil rig is there in the first place.
The Roughneck is an extremely demanding job, and usually requires a strong back. But it is also a well paid position. The lead worker can command as much as $80,000+. But certainly this person has a great deal of experience.
Once a person has landed an offshore oil rig job as a Roustabout, it is not unheard of to grow into the Roughneck crew within a year or so. That is provided a person is a dependable and good worker. If an individual gains experience on land as a Roustabout, then it is very likely they could get a position offshore as a Roughneck.
Exceptions to the Rule
There are a couple of exceptions to this. If you know someone, you have a door in. About thirty years ago I worked in a shipyard in France as a welder. I was very fortunate at the age of 19 to get such a job. A number of the welders and foreman had oil rig experience. I could have gone that route if I’d have chosen.
The other doorway is working overseas. See, as a 19 year old, I was willing to do what others weren’t. It was a tuff proposition for family men. In that situation, I was gone for six months. And because it was overseas, though I was working for a Texas based company, all the money I earned was tax free.
When the job was complete, I had a pile of money in the bank because they paid for all my food, living quarters, plus an expense account of $250 a week…thirty years ago…on top of my pay. So if you are willing to take jobs others will not…then it is possible you could work on an offshore oil rig overseas.