Work-Life Balance Tips for Engineers

As the oil & gas industry continues to settle after the pandemic, hiring challenges are among the chief concerns for employers in the sector.

Despite a slight increase in unemployment within the sector, hiring intentions are holding steady, especially among contractors.

Meanwhile, organisations face issues such as talent permanently exiting the industry, while employees are increasingly concerned about pay and job stability.

These are among the key findings of our third annual salary survey insights.

In this article, we’ll explore a few more highlights of the latest Patch Personnel Salary Survey and what these mean for employers in the sector.

Professionals Are Ready To Move

One of the most pertinent findings from this year’s Patch Personnel Salary Survey is that most workers are open to changing employers. While fewer workers are actively searching for a new job compared to 2021-22, many say they would pursue a new opportunity if it ticked the right boxes.

Further adding to staff turnover risk is the relatively small proportion of younger workers in subsurface roles, indicating that companies won’t find it easy to expand their talent pools quickly.

Many employees are motivated to leave for new challenges, more pay or a change of scenery, according to these salary survey insights, which suggests it’s sensible for organisations to prioritise staff retention strategies.

Salary Trends

In the current economic situation, salary considerations weigh heavily on many professionals. The latest Patch Personnel Salary Survey indicates the majority of employers, among those who agreed to discuss salaries, skew towards increasing pay in 2023-24.

More employees say they have received additional benefits and incentives on top of their salaries this year, suggesting that organisations are using other tools at their disposal to retain their talent in an inflationary economic environment.

What Candidates Want

Satisfactory remuneration, company culture and a healthy work/life balance are the top items on candidates’ wish lists for 2023-24.

According to our latest salary survey insights, workers are more likely to search for greener pastures if they feel bored or stagnant in their current role.

Although employees ranked factors such as career progression and professional development as less important, it would be wise for employers to give these issues attention when shaping their talent strategies.

Working From Home Is Here to Stay

Among the oil & gas insights highlighted for 2023-24 are the expectations surrounding work-from-home arrangements. WFH remains widespread across the industry, although it may be less appealing to employees compared to previous years.

Critically, most employees and employers surveyed want to retain WFH arrangements in some form. For a smaller cohort of employees, the prospect of WFH policies being withdrawn is a dealbreaker. It’s important to keep this in mind when reviewing company policies.

Takeaways for Employers

Despite various economic headwinds, the oil and gas sector continues evolving towards a talent-led market, with a decreasing number of candidates available for job vacancies.

Enhance Your Employer Brand and Value Proposition: In an industry with an ageing workforce, enhancing your employer brand is imperative for attracting younger professionals. A compelling value proposition communicates the unique benefits and opportunities available within your organisation. It also highlights the company’s culture and success stories, along with the positive social impact of the work.

Review salaries regularly: Consistently reviewing remuneration aligns with industry best practices. Regular pay reviews contribute to employee retention and motivation and equip employers to stay competitive when recruiting critical talent.

Get regular pulse checks: For employers, collaborating with employees will allow them to develop and adjust workplace policies that meet their needs. This approach can significantly support employee retention, which has become an acute challenge for the industry.

Takeaways for Candidates

For candidates with mid-career or senior levels of experience seeking new roles within oil and gas subsurface specialities, here are three key pieces of advice:

Leverage Your Network and Industry Connections: Effective networking has never been more important. Whether you’re aiming for a higher salary or searching for a different kind of workplace culture, tapping into your network can provide you with valuable insights, referrals and access to the hidden job market. Engaging with a recruitment specialist who knows the industry inside-out is also a powerful way to boost your job search.

Showcase Your Transferable Skills and Adaptability: The oil and gas industry is undergoing rapid change, and employers seek candidates who can navigate evolving technologies, regulations, and market dynamics. It helps to highlight your ability to grasp new concepts quickly, lead teams through change and adapt to different environments.

Understand Your Bargaining Position Before Negotiating Salary: By comprehending your value, skills, experience, and market demand, you can set realistic expectations during salary negotiations. To bargain for a salary that aligns with your aspirations, ensure you understand the market value for your position and level of experience. Consider factors such as the norms for your speciality area, geographic location, and company size.


Monitoring employee sentiment and broader salary trends can help organisations improve their recruitment outcomes as the oil and gas sectors adjust to the post-pandemic era.

These salary survey insights are a snapshot of the intelligence we regularly gather as talent partners for the industry. Do you need tailored advice and strategies to help you grow your subsurface operations? For comprehensive oil & gas insights, including remuneration data from across the sector, click the button below to download your report copy or contact us directly.

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