Media Release: Oil and gas survey finds skills shortage and rapidly rising salaries

IN its third North East Salary Guide, Thorpe Molloy Recruitment reports that a skills shortage is causing decreased productivity, decreased efficiency and rapidly rising salaries in specialist professions within the oil and gas industry.

The annual guide, which provides information on basic salary levels for junior through to senior roles in the company’s recruitment specialisms, focuses specifically on Aberdeen city and shire.

It reports that although confidence is blooming in the energy sector, many of the company’s clients are concerned about retaining valued employees and are frustrated by the lack of available candidates in niche areas such as technical recruitment, project management, drilling, subsea engineering and contracts management.

Amanda McCulloch, managing director, explains: “In the past 12 months, we’ve experienced an increase in temporary and permanent hiring activity as our clients add to headcount and we engage with new clients requiring specialist assistance to source talent.

“Many of our clients comment on the dramatic rate of change in salaries and contractor day rates which, although not quite back to pre-recession levels, are in rude health, increasing sharply in niche areas.

“Often businesses look to their competitors and supply chain when sourcing new employees.

“This is elevating salaries as companies try to out-compete each other and can also significantly hinder the rate of recruitment as counter-offers retain candidates who have gone through a successful interview and selection process.

“Local companies also have to compete with the allure of overseas destinations which offer new life experiences and lucrative salary and benefits packages.

“Another approach, which is proving to be a key differentiator for local operators, is the focus on effective Total Reward packages.

“In addition to salary and benefits, mid-to-senior employees are being offered share options and very significant ‘welcome’ and retention bonuses based on a percentage of annual salary.

“Although the region is recognised as a highly innovative hub, with a relatively large pool of highly skilled residents, there is a shortage of executive, particularly female, board level talent partly because the long term incentive plans initiated 18 – 24 months ago are taking effect.

“As a result, salaries and the overall value of Total Reward packages at the executive level are rising quickly.

“Collaborative projects are building momentum, such as the Scottish International Centre of Excellence for Energy Training, but even though Aberdeen has the highest average weekly wage in Scotland and is the happiest in the UK it is not a hot destination for re-locators.”

To request a copy of Thorpe Molloy Recruitment’s latest Salary Guide please visit or telephone 01224 658 865.

Posted by Granite PR on behalf of Thorpe Molloy Recruitment.

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Contact: Brett Jackson