Getting work with an offshore drilling contractor is not exactly rocket science. It mainly requires persistence and guts. The more job applications you send out, the more interviews you will be called for, the greater your chances of getting hired. Of course, the big question is how do you find all those offshore drilling job vacancies?
The most basic methods that everyone uses are – register with a recruitment agency in the oil industry; look on job boards like Monster, Yahoo Jobs, Career Builder and Hot Jobs; and look at newspaper job advertisements. These are not bad methods, it is just that by the time the job vacancies meander their way through the bureaucracies of the Human Resources department, it may already be filled by those with insider contacts.
That brings up an important question – how do you find an offshore drilling rig job before it appears in an advertisement? The simplest way is to look for all the small offshore drilling contractor halliburton phone directorys who do the work for the large offshore drilling companies like Halliburton, Schlumberger, Transocean, etc. Most of these small oil service companies tend to cluster around two types of places – the headquarters of the larger companies that subcontract to them; and around the area where the offshore oil rigs are located (in the US, these would be the Gulf Coast states of Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas).
Basically speaking, if you are not staying in one of these places, you are at a disadvantage when looking for a job on an oil platform. If you live there, then you have access to many more resources, including local newspapers where jobs are advertised; the bars, diners and eating spots where the hiring managers and HR of these small oil companies have their lunch and dinner; and last but not least the local phone directories.
Let’s look at these one by one. Job ads in the papers are not a particularly good way to look for a vacancy, especially for a national daily. Ads in such newspapers are very expensive and a small company is not likely to use them. However, ads in small local (town and state) papers are cheaper and more likely to be used.
The next method is to hang around all those diners, bars and eating spots where the staff of the small oil rig companies spend their time out of the office. Why? Because people talk. Co-workers go for lunch together. When they are busy, they work overtime and go for dinner together. They talk to each other at mealtimes. They complain, they gossip, they flap their lips and wag their tongues. When they do not have enough people to drill for oil, they will talk and you will hear of it if you keep your ears open. Yes, it is rude to eavesdrop on other people’s conversations. But so what? Who cares if it gets you a job?
The last method, using the local phone directories, needs guts. You will need to look up the addresses and phone numbers of the small oil firms. This is also a good way to find out which diners to eat your lunches at, i.e. go to the diners and restaurants near the offices of these companies. Anyway, getting back to the phone book – once you have the phone numbers of the companies, call them up to enquire about oil drilling job vacancies. Some of them will just hang up on you. Many will say “No” in one form or another, sometimes rudely, sometimes politely. You will hear a lot of rejections, and it takes guts to continue on despite everything. But the most important point is this – if there is a vacancy open, you will be one of the first to find it, possibly even before it gets advertised.