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Skills shortages are the primary challenge facing two-thirds of UK employers in the oil and gas sector for 2014, revealed the Oil & Gas Global Salary Guide

20 February 2014

Oil and gas industry employers are facing significant skills shortages according to the Oil & Gas Global Salary Guide, and over 65 per cent (68.1%) of employers plan to increase headcount in 2014, exacerbating the already skill-short market, adding pressure to increase salaries to attract candidates, which is based on data from 24,000 respondents.

83 per cent of employers predict an upturn in salaries in the coming year as hiring managers vie for top talent, at the same time as further emphasis is put on benefits. The number of employees receiving benefits grew by over seven per cent over the last 12 months as employers look to bolster compensation packages with incentivised bonuses or attractive pension plans. UK respondents indicated, 27 per cent of employees are offered bonuses, 25 per cent pension plans and 19 per cent have private health plans as part of their remuneration package.

Although in 2013 salaries flattened for the first time in three years employers’ confidence in the market is high as 72 per cent of hiring managers have a positive or very positive outlook on the oil and gas industry.

Ed Allnutt, Director of Hays Oil & Gas, comments: “Salaries in the UK have held up well in a tough climate but with such an improvement in employers’ outlook and more positive sentiment, we are expecting 2014 to provide plenty of opportunities for professionals. Professionals with very niche skills and experience can command high salaries and are highly sought after and this will become more widespread over the coming months.”

Allnutt continues: “Skills shortages are continuing to plague the industry and are clearly a concern for employers. Although there are measures underway to tackle this it should remain a key focus. Developing graduates in STEM subjects and ensuring talented professionals have access to work in the UK are both critical. Government, business and education need to work together to make inroads that will benefit the industry and everybody working within it.”

The Guide produced by recruiting experts Hays Oil & Gas and leading jobsite Oil and Gas Job Search, shows UK local average salaries to have gone up by 0.85 per cent, whereas salaries for imported talent declined by 1.4 per cent compared to the previous year.

For comparison, the industry globally has seen a decline of 1 per cent in salary levels from 2013. The slight reduction in growth of salaries can also be attributed to a market correction after a particularly buoyant two year period of increases within the industry. This is probably a necessary correction after two consecutive years of growth in salaries that have started to threaten the financial performance of some companies and assets including the UK’s ageing North Sea Oil fields. 

Duncan Freer, Managing Director of Oil and Gas Job Search adds: “Whilst the overall level of increase in pay in the UK has slowed, the government has taken steps to welcome further business and investment in the UK by announcing a new tax allowance aimed at boosting the development of shale gas resources in the UK.”

Duncan Freer, comments: “Despite the concerns over a sluggish economic recovery, the feeling in the industry remains positive. Employees and new entrants to the industry can look forward to working dynamic and rewarding global sector.”

Download a free copy of the Guide at or

- Ends -

For further information, please contact:
Claire Fowler, Head of PR at Hays, on 020 7200 3760 or
John Roberts, Marketing Director of Oil and Gas Job Search on + 44 (0) 161 975 6286 or

2014 Salary Guide Summary:
Disciplines covered     24
Countries represented     53
Respondents to the survey    24,000
Respondents who are employers in the industry  7,200

Hays is the leading global specialist recruiting group. It is the expert at recruiting qualified, professional and skilled people across the full lifecycle of the global oil and gas industry. Our recruiting experts deal in both permanent positions and contract roles within upstream, project development and downstream operations.

Hays employs 7,800 staff operating from 245 offices in 33 countries across 20 specialisms. For the year ended 30 June 2013, Hays placed around 55,000 candidates into permanent jobs and around 180,000 people into temporary assignments.

Oil and Gas Job Search is the world’s premier job site dedicated to professionals who work in the oil and gas industry:

750,000+ searchable resumes
25,000  new candidate registrations per month
1 million job searches per month
250,000+ job applications per month
1,200,000  visits per month
6 million  page views per month


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