Competing for talent in the oil patch

Recent studies provide instruction on E&P employee retention/ recruitment. Management leaders’ concerns in the E&P industry have markedly shifted to human resource issues, namely employee recruitment and retention. This contrasts with a historical focus on commodity pricing, capital deployment and operational expertise. This trend is described in Grant Thornton’s latest Survey of U.S. Independent Oil and Gas Companies.It found that 65% of managers expect difficulties in hiring and training employees, up from 20% two years ago. Further, 95% of firms surveyed anticipate that industry employment levels will increase in 2006, or 32% more than those in 2004. Traditional business practices employed in capital deployment and operating practices – development and tracking of key performance indicators, strategic positioning, and enhancement of operations – can help address recruitment and retention challenges. With 95% of management teams expecting growth in employment and a finite number of seasoned professionals entering the industry from other businesses, competition for recruiting and retaining employees will remain fierce.

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