The oil and gas employment situation in Australia has shown some improvement, according to the latest Hays Quarterly Report.

The report found that Process and Reliability Engineers, Tender and Quality Engineers are three of the skills sought by oil and gas employers.

Western Australia
Hays found that despite the lack of new projects in Western Australia and an abundance of available candidates, the outlook for the oil & gas industry is mainly positive due to the increased price of oil. Contract positions are still preferred by most employers, with very few permanent opportunities on offer.

Queensland’s oil & gas market is seeing some modest signs of improvement, with the demand for domestic gas likely to aid the industry’s rebound. However hiring activity this quarter will likely remain flat.

South Australia
Demand for blue collar workers in terminal operations, where candidates are given work on an ad hoc basis, will remain consistent in response to lean operational practices and teams.

Niche white collar roles relating to design and quality are also being created, predominantly by specialist equipment suppliers.

Employers and candidates are becoming much more positive in Victoria. Some exciting acquisitions add real promise and could signal a key turning point for investment in the industry.

The gas industry remains an important area for Victoria as the state’s construction and property market continues to boom and Melbourne and its surrounding regions expand and require utilities.

Hotspots of demand

Western Australia
Process and Reliability Engineers are seeing increased vacancy activity. While there are very few new projects in the state, the industry has remained broadly positive. In the last few months employment within the exploration sector has been particularly hard hit at it comes into a period of production increase rather than high investment.

Hays has seen construction roles and related design roles continue to decline with the exception of niche areas. But there has been an increase in reliability and cost roles.

Recruitment activity in Queensland’s market will remain flat this quarter, with most vacancies in the operations area, blue collar and on an as-needed basis.

South Australia
Niche white collar roles such as Tender and Quality Engineers and those relating to design and quality are being created, predominantly in specialist equipment suppliers. This is the result of SME growth and the function previously being performed by people in a dual trade position. Now that business activity has been steadily growing, employers are adding headcount once more.

Hays found that in Victoria’s blue collar space, demand has increased for Fitters and Boilermakers in response to the shortage of suitable tradespeople.

Gas Workers/Pipeline Workers are also in demand. A number of organisations are interested in gas trades candidates, in particular insertion and pipeline workers. Given continued residential development, demand has increased for infrastructure trades.

Mechanical Fitters are in high demand too. With an increase in projects and a shortage of candidates, this skill was added to the Skills Shortage List in Victoria.

Project Managers with five or more years of experience managing multiple projects simultaneously within the equipment supplier market are in continually high demand by manufacturing companies that are still thriving. Companies in niche areas of manufacturing are providing equipment for refurbishments, maintenance and occasionally greenfield projects.