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A Personnel Shift Expected in the Energy Sector?

Oscar Energy Q2 Overview

By Shaun Roberts - Associate Director, Oscar Energy

Energy – An industry of opportunity

The landscape of the energy industry is an ever evolving one.

Those of us involved in the Oil and Gas sector have, over the last 12 months or so, been experiencing turbulent times where ‘cost reduction’ is becoming the new orthodoxy following a plummeting ppb of oil from $115 to $45 in just 8 months (June 14 – Jan 15).

In response to this, Oscar Energy has taken the opportunity to assist our oil and gas clients in their cost-saving initiatives, whilst simultaneously continuing to expand into the wider Energy markets through the industry-migration of oil and gas personnel.

Our insight into the Oil & Gas market:

As a specialist provider of senior technical and commercial professionals to the sector since 2001, Oscar Energy has long-standing and valued relationships with oil and gas companies across the globe.

Against the background of sustained low oil and gas prices, we have been working with these partners to realise cost efficiencies across the supply chain and establish how we can contribute to this agenda ourselves.

During a period of low hiring activity, we have seen many recruitment agencies reduce their own costs through reducing headcount and in some cases leaving the industry altogether.

However, as we see our relationships with our clients as a partnership rather than a transaction, we have taken the opportunity to actually strengthen our relationships by taking the time to understand how we can provide value-adding services to our clients beyond simply ‘recruitment’.

We continue to look at how else we can assist our clients through the provision of market intelligence, rate and salary information, competitor analysis and more - all within a competitive cost structure.

Indeed, H1 2015 has undoubtedly been our busiest time in the client procurement space for some years, with most of our clients renegotiating what they expect from their recruitment partners from a service, delivery and fee perspective.

I am pleased to say that we have been successful in most of these tenders and look forward to growing with our clients in the future and the wheels of their hiring plans begin to turn again.

A time of change for candidates?

With over 120,000 job losses in the oil and gas industry, and contractor day rates reduced from anywhere between 10% and 25% during this intense focus of cost reduction, we have identified a migration of talent from oil and gas projects to those which afford more stability in the short and medium term.

For example, in a bid to move from high carbon power generation towards a cleaner and more sustainable energy mix, the UK Government (and many of its European neighbours) has been undergoing radical changes related to their renewable energy policies and endeavours.

This has created a demand for well trained technical professionals with Engineering experience on large scale multi-million pound projects.

Renewable energy provided over 19% of the UK’s total electricity generation in 2014; a figure which gives testament to the resilient nature of the renewable energy market, which experienced substantial growth in 2014 – 2015 against a backdrop of both political uncertainty and economic risk.

What Opportunities Are Available?

Solar Power

It has been widely reported by many analysts that investment in renewable energy in FY 2014 – 2015 surpassed expectations despite the falling price of oil - and Solar was the biggest single contributor to the overall rise.

At the time of writing, instable policy and barriers to trading into Europe will likely mean slower growth for the solar industry in the UK, however many of our clients in the US, continental Europe and Africa are continuing to grow at aggressive rates leading to an increased demand for both technical and sales / business development skill sets.

Coming from an industry with a strong track record of technical training & HSE awareness, oil and gas-based engineering and commercially focussed candidates with an appetite to diversify their skill set are considered in high demand by many of our Solar clients, especially those from the highly competitive contracting industry.

Wind Power

The offshore wind industry already boasts a high number of operational projects, with an impressive pipeline of future projects – including a number of large scale offshore wind projects currently tendering for a wide range of work packages.

Many of the elements that are required for the development of offshore wind projects have already been developed by the personnel working in the oil and gas sector; highlighting the synergy between the two industries.

Many of our clients in the offshore wind sector are therefore highly receptive to engaging with the great depth of experience in the oil and gas industry for managing the offshore construction and installation of these projects.

There are of course a number of challenges oil and gas personnel have to consider taking full advantage of these new work opportunities, such as the cost of training in a new sector and the need to adapt to a new way of working. For those who are to look beyond this and invest their future in the offshore wind industry, the potential is considerable.

How to Find Out More:

Oscar Energy recently welcomed back Bethany Mire from maternity leave; Bethany has an extensive background in renewables recruitment in North America and will be leading our growth in this exciting sector.

To contact Bethany and find out more about the opportunities available in the Renewables and Oil & Gas industries in North America, please click here.

For opportunities across EMEA please speak with Shaun Roberts or one of the members of our team in the UK; whilst Alex Bacciarelli can help you for APAC enquiries.

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