CV Writing For Oil And Gas Jobs

oil and gas CV writingIf you’re looking for a new job in the oil and gas industry, you must make sure that you have the right CV. A role in this sector might need specialist skills or experience, so a regular version of your CV may not adequately sell you to a potential recruiter. Increase your chances of recruitment success in the oil and gas sector with these five crucial enhancements.

Use a technical CV format
The oil and gas industry has opportunities for almost any type of candidate, but there are key areas of technical expertise that are always high in demand. The nature of exploration and production means that energy companies are always on the lookout for people with qualifications in electrical, chemical or mechanical engineering. To apply for roles that demand these skills, use a technical CV format. This places details of your technical qualifications right at the beginning of the document so that a recruiter sees them straight away. Check if the role has any specific requirements, and make it clear that you meet these needs in the first paragraph of the document.

Highlight your mobility and willingness to travel
Roles in the oil and gas industry are often available in some of the remotest parts of the world. While you will find the head offices of big oil businesses in major cities, a lot of the main working centers are in developing countries. Oil and gas recruiters will want to see evidence that you are willing to travel, and you should highlight any earlier roles where you have worked in remote locations. If you don’t have experience of working away from home, put other evidence of your flexibility in the CV, and state clearly that you are internationally mobile.

Oil Rig

“The oil and gas industry offers a huge variety of career opportunities…”

Show your commitment to specific roles

A lot of oil and gas jobs need highly skilled, dedicated people. Recruiters are looking for candidates that can show their commitment to this industry, and this applies whether you are fresh from college, or if you are an experienced professional. Your personal summary or profile describes your experience to date, and outlines what you want to do next. Make sure this section focuses on one or two specific roles in the industry so that recruiters can see you are a committed specialist. Oil and gas roles may need extensive training and development, and recruiters will want to know that you are in this for the long run.

Make sure you target the right field
Careers in the oil and gas industry generally focus on one of four fields. Most advertised opportunities target scientists, engineers, mathematicians or businesspeople. It’s vital that your CV makes it clear which of these four categories you fall into. Look at the advertisement for the role that you are applying for, and make sure that your CV has all the key words and skills that the recruiter is looking for. Remember that a scientist’s CV will feature very different key words to a business manager’s CV, so write the content very carefully.

Show evidence of transferable career skills
For experienced career professionals, a shift into the oil and gas industry may seem daunting, especially if you aren’t sure that you have transferable skills and experience. In fact, recruiters in these sectors are often very keen to find recruits from other industries because these people help plug skill shortages. It’s really important that your CV highlights roles in other sectors that may appeal to oil and gas employers. For example, engineers from any industry may have a lot of relevant skills and experience. Military personnel often regularly move around the world, and can also show evidence of working in very difficult environments. If you want to break into the oil and gas industry, make sure that your CV focuses on other roles that show you have it what it takes.

The oil and gas industry offers a huge variety of career opportunities, and there are roles available for applicants of all ages. To make sure that a recruiter takes notice of your CV, you must therefore adapt your application to the specific needs of the industry.

Did you find this useful? Why not read more about CV writing for jobs in sustainable energy?

Image: “South Killingholme Oil Jetty”, ©David Wright –
Image 2: “Rig”, ©Enrico Strocchi –

With 20+ years of experience writing CVs, it still puts a smile on my face when I hear a client has secured an interview Lee Tonge - Founder and Director


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