One of the first things you might ask when thinking about the oilfield electrician jobs is, “What does an oilfield electrician do?” Believe it or not, many different tasks fall under this title. An electrician works to provide solutions and safety for the rigors of working in the oil and gas industry. Many things fall under the term oilfield electrician jobs, from electrical wiring systems to control panels and computerized equipment.
The oil and gas industry was thought of as a small field with a few well-known companies in the past. Today the industry is much larger, and the scope of work reaches every corner of the world. For that reason, these jobs are becoming more specialized, and specialization can mean better pay, job security, and greater opportunities for advancement. If you want to be an oilfield electrician, you will likely be required to gain some specific certification. To get into one of the most sought-after jobs in the oil and gas industry, you must pass a certain test and prove yourself worthy of the title of field engineer.
Several tests are required to qualify as a field engineer. One of the most popular tests for those seeking field engineer jobs in the oil and gas industry is the examination by the AMSOIL Foundation. This test provides rigor for evaluating engineering, logic, reasoning skills, and attention to detail and communication. The foundation was established in response to the lack of rigor and standards for those wishing to work in the field.
Along with passing the exam, oilfield electricians must undergo a background check, and most certification requirements are obtained through accredited training programs. A few notable training programs accredited by the AMSOIL Foundation are the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Engineers, the National Electrical Contractors Association, the North American Society for Construction Education, and the Accreditation Council for Graduate Engineering Schools. Once the electrician has received his or her education, he or she must obtain a minimum of 200 hours of continuing education to maintain certification. These classes can sometimes be located at local community colleges. Some of the continuing education classes offered typically include energy-related courses.
Oilfield electricians are typically stationed at oil rigs, where they provide various services to their clients. Most entry-level jobs require that an electrician is on the premises at all times. In some cases, these employees will provide telecommunication services, while in other instances, they will perform general maintenance services to keep the rigs operational. Typical maintenance tasks include lighting, ventilation, and HVAC. Electricians also provide computer support and troubleshooting to keep the operation of the rig on track.
The job description of a skilled oilfield electrician often involves working as a member of a crew. This is where his or her leadership skills come into play. An electrician must have the management and leadership skills to work effectively as a team. This also entails having the ability to take ownership and responsibility for one’s own actions and others. In some instances, the electrician may be called upon to serve as a supervisor or a coach for the crew daily.
There are several different career fields within the oilfield industry. These range from chemical engineers who design equipment to technicians who provide hands-on laboratory and lab skills. Oilfield electricians are just one of the many professionals within this field. In most cases, they would be considered entry-level professionals.
If you are interested in a career as an oilfield electrician, it is important to understand that the education requirements will vary depending upon the field. Some states require oil and gas pipeline companies to hire certain school graduates and pass licensing examinations. Some oilfield electricians complete a two-year Associate’s degree, followed by a four-year Bachelor’s degree. Other states have no minimum educational requirements. Regardless of your own personal goals, it is critical to remember that you will be entering a demanding field that requires a high level of classroom and hands-on training.