Keep improving yourself: career tips for the oil and gas professionals

Keep improving yourself: career tips for the oil and gas professionals

From our first day at work and as time goes by, we show a desire to keep growing, learning and achieving new goals. However, in order reach that point we must practice new actions.
Some of us, are very dedicated to working. We focus on what has to be done, to the point we neglect out our social lives. That is a serious mistake. Now more than ever it is very important to make connections, create and have a strong professional network. Do not only seek for those that have an open position, your colleagues and the people who you work with are just as important. While professional relations with other fields is important, remember to narrow your focus to your own field of work, it might come in handy one day.


Many of us still think that branding and marketing are only for those massive business conglomerates. However, is no secret that nowadays people can do branding and marketing for themselves. In fact, it happens each day in both subtle and bold ways. Just by striking up a conversation, the way you dress, your behavior at work, and your overall attitude is a way you market and brand yourself. Be the person that everybody wants to know, meet, and work with. It is also important to create a network of contacts, put yourself out there! It is never a bad thing to know too many people. We might also have the chance to meet people we admired or we looked for in our work field.  If you get to have the opportunity to have that persons as a mentor, don’t over think it. These people can guide you and give great advice.

In companies or organization, people value persons who take that extra mile. So don’t be afraid to participate, to innovate, to share your ideas and to challenge yourself. Keep in mind that in this competitive era we need to be more adaptable and flexible and to do more of what is required. But if you already have certain activities, tasks, projects on the road that are your responsibility,  you have to be truth to yourself and know how much you can carry on your shoulders. It is ok to say no when you can’t support others people requests.

Since we start our education, year after year the system tries to give us tools which will provide us different skills and abilities. Those things we might had thought were unnecessary actually help us to be better prepared and to perform well in our workplace: presentation, speeches, group projects, break time, among others. All these things were meant to train and build the best version of ourselves, to be confident, a good team player and to learn how to get the work done.

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When you and your team have great results, this reflects on the department where you work in or the company. This is a collective accomplishment and needs to be celebrated! Do not go crazy but enjoy it and be happy for the good work that was done!

Although you are an excellent employee and you have all the required skills, attitude and abilities, you can’t leave aside how you look. It is just as important as giving our best personal presentation to our colleagues, clients and all the people that we interact with the working environment.

Although among the road, we will find certain problems, difficulties, and challenges we need to look at them as new opportunities to learn and be part of the solution. This challenges might be hard to overcome sometimes, that is why we need to keep in mind certain aspects such as: accepting feedback and constructive criticism. Even though some of you have a hard time receiving this, my recommendation is to take a deep breath and see this as a learning experience, as a constructive comment that will lead us to progress. Also keep in mind always to be humble, kind and respectful to others.


Consider having a backup plan, a card under the table. Not always what we aim to achieve can be done in just one way. If you find yourself in a tough situation, try to keep calm and focus on what can be done to overcome the problem.

Living in the technological era offers many advantages among which the infinite possibilities to access information. Everything is just one click away. You can find online courses from multiple fields, you can start learning a new language, how to manage a software and how to develop new skills. Take your time and give it a trying!

All this advice and tips could lead you to become a great resource for the people you work with, that is always a great thing because you must be doing something good and to act more professionally.


How to get trough the interview. Steps to follow.

How to get trough the interview. Steps to follow.

After submitting your resume and getting the call from the recruiter, the moment of the interview is finally here. Most candidates don’t take preparing for the interview so serious and get to be surprised by how complex and difficult this process can be. That is why we hope to bring you some helpful tips to make this process a little easier:

  1. While practicing for your interview it is extremely easy to slack off. During this process of practice we might want to skip the easy questions and answers, however, these questions might be the ones that trick us more! So let’s be careful and try to be as prepared as we possibly can. Don’t expect to know everything that they can throw at you, be prepared to be flexible
  2. For those who go to an interview for the first time- Don’t be afraid! A good way to feel more comfortable in an interview is to familiarize yourself with the company. It never hurts to know more details about the company or organization where you might end up working. What are some of their latest achievements?
  3. That first impression is always unforgettable, so make sure to make it count. Give yourself the time to prepare both mentally and physically. Dress to impress!  Of course, interviews vary from company to company, so find the outfit that will be sure to land you the job you are looking for. After all, the way you carry yourself not only has an effect on the person interviewing you but will also grant considerable confidence to yourself.
  4. In an interview, the most dangerous thing that you can do is to ramble. The interviewer wants to hear mostly about your education, work or volunteer experience and the way those activities led you to acquire new abilities or skills that make you a suited candidate. Do your best to keep your answers clean and to the point. Do not forget to avoid topics that always tend to be controversial, keep yourself if you can and remain in a neutral position.
  5. Nowaday, interviews are not always done face to face. It’s more and more common to witness group interviews, phone interviews, video interviews, etc.The interview might even be more casual than what is deemed as professional, perhaps over coffee or dinner. Many people find themselves stressed when these unique types of interviews occur. However, it doesn’t change the fact that it is an interview, so don’t stress about it, be calm and give your best.
  6. Lastly, remember to alway be punctual. This is a signal of interest and respect for the interviewers, as well as making a good image for yourself. Wake up a little earlier, check the traffic report, look up for the best way to get to that final destination and be on time for that interview.

I hope all of these tips prove useful to you and allow you to be more confident whenever you take the next big plunge into the industry. I believe that the key to a perfect interview at the end is basically just to show who you are, be humble, honest and always smile!




A Slow Start to a Hopeful Beginning

Since 2010 employment in Texas has been rising slowly but steady, exception being 2016, as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In the United States, this year started with 2,343 more jobs than in January of the previous year.


Data extracted on February 14, 2017, from the Bureau of Labor Statistics

According to Texas Workforce Commission, last year the Lone Star State added around 210,200 jobs. “Texas employers continue to boost the diverse Texas economy by adding jobs, including 210,200 over the year,” said TWC Chairman Andres Alcantar. During the last months of 2016, even though employment numbers were rising, so was the rate of unemployment. On the beginning of the year, it finally stabilized at about 4.6 percent.

The most important cities in Texas that have contributed to the increase in employment were Dallas (Fort Worth-Arlington and Plano-Irving)  and Houston, specifically in the areas of The Woodlands and Sugar Land.  Also it is important to remember that during the past year, “Private-sector employment has been strong over the year with overall job growth of 172,600 jobs added,” as the TWC Commissioner Representing Employers Ruth R. Hughes said, and “These numbers are a testament to the perseverance and resilience of our Texas employers and the diversity of our Texas economy.”
In the Current Employment Statistics Highlights released February 3, 2017, we found out on that the recent employment improvement coincides with stronger economic indicators for the industry. Domestic oil rig counts increased 3.5 percent over the month in January, reaching 659 and the price of West Texas Intermediate oil rose 0.5 percent over the month to $53.01.

While these numbers might not be exactly gargantuan, it is a promising start, and we hope to see this trend continue and ascend even further in the distant future.



Oil and gas jobs rise in Texas

oil and gas workersThe begging of the year marks a positive outlook for the future of oil and gas jobs. Anyone who reads the news, works in the energy industry, or just listens to people in general would know that the oil and gas industry has been anything but positive for the last 3 years.

With problems regarding over production and decreasing gas prices, more than 100.000 jobs have been lost in the oil and gas sector and many businesses have suffered. However, the projections for this year holds a spark of hope, as it would seem that the industry might just be on its way to the extremely desired recovery.

In February of 2016, gas prices hit an excruciating low of $26 per barrel, doubling since then and finally settling at $53 a barrel. Multiple drilling companies are currently spending vast amounts of money in the Permian Basin, a lucrative oil area in west Texas. Exxon Mobile recently spent over 6.6 billion dollars acquiring over 250,000 acres of land in the basin, which is a huge financial step for them in shale play. Also the number of active oil rigs in the United States has been increasing, with a recent jump of 35 oil rigs as little as two weeks ago. With this surge of activity coming back to the rigs, drillers have returned to over 140 rigs that recently suffered without them. Williston in North Dakota has shown recovery by hosting frequent job fairs, hoping to bring drillers back to work. All of these factors, from rigs across the nation to personal company investments, are showing the start of a recovery to the suffering energy sector.

Even the newly elected President Trump and OPEC are doing their part to aid the oil industry. President Trump recently signed two presidential memorandum with the intent to streamline and expedite two major pipeline constructions: Keystone XL and Dakota Access. He hopes that by streamlining these projects he could create as much as 28,000 jobs and aid the oil industry in its recovery. OPEC has continued to hold up its agreement to curb its oil production as to halt the oversupply that is flooding the global market. With these production cuts in place, a sense of ease can be embraced hoping that the global market will stabilize from previous swelling.

While all of these moves are seen as a sign of growth, we are by no means in the clear. A barrel of oil is still worth half as much as it was during the industries peak in 2014. Also while companies were granted 1,000 drilling permits here in Texas during the month of December, this is still a far shot from the 3,000 permits granted in September and October of 2014. Also in order to really make a difference, it is projected that oil needs to be over 60 dollars a barrel, and it still has quite a ways before the barrel reaches that number.  Essentially, the energy sector should still be holding breathe, as there is still a long way to go to recover all that was lost during the harsh downturn. However, it is still hopeful to see these first signs of recovery. It’s like the first bud of the spring, a beautiful sight, and the first step to seeing the whole garden in bloom.




Oil rich Texas heading to recovery

Texas is expecting some economic recovery as crude oil prices start to start to stabilize around $50 per barrel.

A senior economist in Texas, said that even thought job growth was slower compared to last year, the recovery in crude oil prices might be a sign of recovery in the sector. “Broad indicators of the Texas economy continue to point toward moderate growth,” Keith R. Phillips, assistant vice president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, said
in a statement. The bank warned earlier this year that the pressure from low oil prices was spilling over to other parts of the economy, with banks in southern U.S. states facing increasing risk. Crude oil prices, despite short-term volatility, have been steady at around $50 per barrel for most of October.

Phillips said that Texas added 20,700 jobs last year and from the beginning of the year, job growth has increased at a annualized rate of 0.9% , compSource : Shutterstockared to a 1.3% rate in 2015. The bank said it expected  a rate of 1.2 percent for full-year 2016.

Total oil production in Texas for July, the last full month for which the state published data, was 85.3 million barrels, a preliminary volume that would be the low point for the year if accurate. Year-on-year, total production for the No. 1 oil state in the country is lower by about 18 percent.

The Dallas Fed said that, in terms of stock values, there were increases posted for most Texas companies and permits for oil and gas wells increased. Oilfield services company Schlumberger, which has offices in Houston and is the largest company of its kind, said last week the oil market is in balance and recovery is on the way.

The bank official said job growth was apparent, though unemployment rates growth in five of the nine major metropolitan areas in Texas last week.

“With the stabilization of the energy sector in the second and third quarters and continued growth in the service sectors, such as health care and leisure and hospitality, jobs in the Texas economy are likely to continue to grow at a moderate pace in the months ahead,” Phillips said.







It’s simple. Really.

Recruiters aren’t looking for a stylishly formatted resume. They are looking for relevant information presented clearly and concisely. In a technology driven world, hundreds of resumes are submitted daily for one job, and recruiters have access to thousands upon thousands of resumes via databases and social media. It’s resume overload. So, how do you stand out from the rest and get a recruiter to really consider your resume?



Every person applying for the job is your competition. It may seem like you should change up the formatting of you resume to stand out and catch the eye of the recruiter. After all, a recruiter looks at hundreds of resumes a day. Don’t get caught up by this idea. A uniquely formatted resume may cause a recruiter to briefly pause when they come across it, but not for long. If your information isn’t easy to find or follow, they won’t waste the time to locate it. Simple formatting with easy to locate information will keep a recruiter focused on your resume.

Your resume should stand out due to your experience and expertise

Vital Information

You may be surprised how often recruiters come across resumes that are missing the vitals: contact information, education/certification(s), objective/summary and dates. These details are critical to a recruiter and hiring manager. Be sure you clearly label this information, so that it is easy to find because this is the information that will entice a recruiter to keep looking at your resume.

Contact Information: At the beginning of your resume, include your name, telephone number(s), e-mail address, and city/state of residence.

Education/Certification(s): Some recruiters prefer to see this information listed first while others don’t specify. However, they all agree that this information should be clearly labeled and easy to locate.

Be sure you provide complete details; don’t just say “Bachelor’s Degree” specify what kind of degree, where and when you earned it.


An objective is simple. What is your profession? What is your field of expertise? Or what type of career are you looking for?

Every good resume includes a descriptive, concise summary of your work experience with key details relative to your background and expertise. This information should be one of the first things a recruiter sees. This is the area of the resume you can change to better match the job description. Grab a recruiter’s attention with keywords from the job description.

Dates: For every job you list, you should include the dates of employment from start to finish. Provide more than the years, list the month and year for better accuracy.

It’s In the Details

Details are what the recruiter is looking for once you’ve captured their attention with the vitals. It’s the details that let them know if you have the technical skills required for the job.

Include the right information the right way.

Technical Skills

Technical skills are the right details. As job seekers, we want to provide as much information as possible in our resumes. Remember the best thing is to keep it simple and easy to read. While it’s important to provide information about all your key responsibilities at previous jobs, highlight what makes you the expert in your discipline.

Get down to the finer details: include project experience and software knowledge to further highlight your technical skills.

Project Experience:

Specific project experience is critical. Clearly detail the information under your prior work experience.

Recruiters don’t only want to know the responsibilities you had at previous jobs, they like to see thorough project information under each assignment. This provides the details about how you’ve applied your skills in the industry.

Our recruiters suggest listing the projects you worked on at each prior job underneath the bullet points of your responsibilities/duties.

Software Knowledge:

You’ll catch a recruiter’s attention by providing your software knowledge, but if you don’t provide details of where/how you’ve used it they don’t have any real details about your proficiency.

Our recruiters agree that a good resume properly highlights your software knowledge. Clearly label an area at the top of your resume to list these skills, but don’t be afraid to highlight these skills throughout resume.

US oil production to test record high in 2016

US oil production to test record high in 2016

The Energy Information Administration, a statistical arm of the US Department of Energy informed that the US oil production will reach his historical peak by 2016, raising its forecast to levels that would have been unexpected just a few years ago.

The U.S. oil and gas industry has been a bright spot in recent years as the economy struggles to recover from a financial crisis and growth stagnation.

The energy renaissance has prompted some large U.S. oil companies to sell foreign assets and come home to focus on shale, leading to an upsurge of infrastructure projects.

Read more

5 Reasons you should be on LinkedIn

It is a mistake to think of LinkedIn as a giant job board and your profile as just another resume. The power of any social networking tool is in the actual networking. So, if you are employed and don’t have a LinkedIn account you should consider creating one.

Here are the reasons:

1.       You need to have a large network so you can use it later

Imagine you just lost your job and you online have 10 LinkedIn connections and you then realize you should have invested more time in that. So don’t wait and increase your list of connections.

It’s always better to dig your well before you need to drink from it. If you haven’t been building social equity with your network, you’ll have little to draw from later. So don’t wait until you need it. Build a strong network on LinkedIn now. Be active. Provide value. Stay in touch.

2.       You never know when the opportunity knocks at your door. Employers are always looking for passive candidates

At any given time, 70 percent of your colleagues are looking for a job, but “smart companies realize that to hire the best and brightest, they must target candidates not actively looking for new jobs,” Dan Shapero, vice president of Talent Solutions at LinkedIn, tells us. These are the passive jobseekers and it's a lot easier to find them now because of LinkedIn and other professional networking sites.

Companies who seek this type of candidates are willing to pay you more than what you are making now in order to have on their team. If you aren’t on LinkedIn, you are reducing your chances of being discovered and having the opportunity to make more money.

3.       Industry groups can offer you value and connection

Groups on LinkedIn have really matured. The discussions are more engaging and the quality of the contest has improved. Not only will you be exposed to news, and new ideas, but you’ll have a chance to demonstrate your expertise through commenting and discussion

4.       Keep your resume updated just in case

Keep your resume updated and writing a new one will be that much easier. Instead of staring at a blank piece of paper trying to remember your start and stop dates, you’ll just check your profile and know. Look, you never know when you’ll need a resume. Most employment these days is at-will. Your company doesn’t need any reason to let you go tomorrow. Be ready.

5.        Read the news feed for your industry

The average time spent on LinkedIn is just over four minutes per visit. The company finds this dismal fact upsetting, and does what it can to keep you on. And some of the ways it does that are actually quite good. You can get customized news delivered daily. Based on your industry, the types of articles you share, and who is in your network, your daily news feed is likely going to inform you of things you should know about your job.

Waldam. Joshua. 5 Reasons You Need to Be on LinkedIn Even When You Have a Job. The Ladders. Retrieved from

Giang. Vivian. 2013. April 18. Here Are 3 Hiring Trends That LinkedIn Says You MUST Know. Business Insider. Retrieved from

Implications of Government Shutdown on Oil and Gas

There really won't be any. The government shutdown will have little impact on “the continuity of the U.S. oil and natural gas industry” (Blackmon). There are various agencies within the government that have some form of regulatory authority over the industry, and the only major impact the shutdown will seem to have on the industry is a further slowing-down of issuing permits. This is due to the fact that “only a fraction of current oil and natural gas drilling in the U.S. today takes place on federal lands or in federal waters” (Blackmon).

English: Bureau of Land Management logo

Image retrieved from:

The following information comes from a report on the impacts to the various agencies with control over the oil and gas industry during this shutdown (retrieved from Link)

“Offshore oil and gas: The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement would “continue operation of about 53% of its functions,” paid for via non-appropriated funds, according to Interior’s shutdown plan. Inspections will continue, as well as processing of development plans and applications for drilling permits. The Bureau of Ocean EnergyManagement, however, would shut down much of its operations — including any leasing activities, reviews of exploration and production plans and environmental studies. BOEM will also stop its ongoing review of high bids from its late August lease sale in the western Gulf of Mexico, “which will delay both the issuance of leases and the associated payments” to the Treasury, according to the agency. BOEM will have employees “available for activation” in the event of a major oil spill.

Onshore oil and gas: Processing of oil and gas permits by the Bureau of Land Management comes to a halt. BLM will continue to monitor ongoing oil, gas, coal and other mineral operations. BLM will keep inspectors and enforcement personnel on the job for some activities, including overseeing some drilling operations and patrolling oil and gas fields “to make sure that theft of oil or condensate is not occurring.” Alaska pipeline operations will also keep going because funding comes from non-federal sources and for health and safety reasons. And in case you were wondering, oil and gas companies still have to pay royalties during a shutdown.

Environmental Protection Agency: EPA would keep 1,069 (of 16,205) employees on the job, including those involved in law enforcement, employees whose funding comes from other sources and others performing exempted activities. Lab scientists may need to ensure research is ongoing. Emergency responders may also be at work. EPA will consult with the Justice Department about whether and when cases will go forward, the plan says.

Interior Department: DOI would keep about 14,000 employees (of 72,562) on the job most of them to discharge its law enforcement activities and responsibilities overseeing national parks.

White House: The CEQ will keep around three staffers to “catalogue and secure official records and to oversee cancellation of non-essential activities.”

NOAA: The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration would keep a total of 5,368 people working through a shutdown, almost 4,000 of whom are National Weather Service employees. Other workers would stay on board to maintain climate monitoring research and oversee environmental satellites.

Blackmon, David. 2013, October 1. Oil and Gas Industry Won't Feel Much Pain From Government Shutdown. Forbes. Retrieved from:

Shallow Horizontal Drilling, Fracking The Next Boom?

Five years ago the Marcellus Shale boom shifted the focus of the oil and gas industry away from reservoirs that had “been fueling the region for decades” (Litvak). Now, nearly half a dozen oil and gas companies are looking at the old reservoirs with “horizontal eyes” (Litvak). Forging a new path, these companies are utilizing horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing on wells as shallow as 2,000 feet. While horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing have brought great success in the Marcellus Shale, it won't be known until February whether or not the use of these techniques in shallow oil and gas fields is successful.

This is a great opportunity for smaller companies that were pushed out of the shale game. For example, Horizontal Exploration was established by Mark Thompson “to profit from technology and services that followed Marcellus operators into Pennsylvania in recent years” (Litvak). Already, the company has drilled 3 h horizontal wells and holds permits for an additional 8. Overtime, these wells are expected to cost from $800,000 to $900,000 per well. While Horizontal Exploration is currently spending $1.3 million per well, this is well under the $4 to $10 million cost to manage a Marcellus well. As well, the shallow wells require about 120,000 gallons of fluid; 5 million gallons are needed when fracking a Marcellus well.

Hydraulic fracturing in the Barnett Shale field of Fort Worth, Texas

Image Retrieved from:

The sandstones in the Upper Devonian are much thinner than those found in the Marcellus Shale. This allows companies to locate spots for conventional and unconventional wells much easier. Moreover, sandstone is much more porous than shale, so oil and gas is able to travel much more freely through its tunnels. The pressure needed to frack  a shallow well is minimal compared to a deep shale well. In fact, some of the horizontal shallow wells are designed not to be fracked. While the wells won't produce nearly as much as what is coming out of the Marcellus Shale, the wells should bring “at least 10 times the county of a vertical shallow well and a quicker payback period” (Litvak). 

Phoenix Energy Production and Penneco Oil Co. are two other companies that have drilled horizontal wells in the region. Phoenix Energy Production hasn't fracked either of its wells.

As this form of drilling gains momentum, more companies will look to drilling horizontal wells in shallow reservoirs. With increased production, comes more jobs. Could shallow drilling be the next energy boom?

Litvak, Anya. 2013, September 28, 2013. Horizontal Drilling, Fracking Begin in Shallow Oil and Gas Fields. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved from:



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