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The Oil and Gas Talent Gap

Oil and gas executives won’t be prepared to meet tomorrow’s production demand if they don’t quickly address the one asset about which they know the least: their people. The industry is confronting a chronic, global talent shortfall, according to the results from a study of the talent outlook and workforce practices in the oil and gas industry recently conducted by Mercer.

Addressing the talent gap will require industrywide solutions that start with companies understanding the internal and external market forces at work. As the chart below shows, the talent mismatch is especially acute among more experienced workers. Mercer surveyed 126 participants from 112 organizations with more than one million employees, representing a cross-section of company types in 50 countries.

To fill the gap, many companies plan to recruit workers from their competitors. Not only is this strategy unsustainable, it will most likely be insufficient to meet future demand. In addition, oil and gas firms are competing with companies in other industries for the same pool of talent. Instead, human resource executives need to step up and provide clarity about both the talent gaps that are developing and the creative workforce-building techniques that can solve them.


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