The oil rig job description most people imagine is manual labor and getting dirty, yet there are many wonderful opportunities involved as well…which should be taken into account as you weigh your career choices. Most importantly, if you are un-skilled or have no formal training in a trade and are at least 18 years of age the oil industry could be your best choice. Not many career paths invite high-school drop-outs to work for double what college graduates make after 4 years of education. Of course, you can’t just saunter on-board a rig without being scrutinized at all. Because oil rig job descriptions require you to be physically fit and able-bodied, an exam will determine whether or not you can handle the demands of oil life. But before you even apply, it’s crucial to know your options and advancement potential prior to getting on board.
Entry level oil rig job descriptions on a drill or deck crew include cleaning, painting, tool maintenance, and assisting superiors. The term used for a completely “green” hire is Roustabout. If you’ve had some experience in field drilling, you might be hired on as a Roughneck, who has more involvement in actual drilling operations. Also, if you do have a college degree in Chemistry, you might be hired in the mud room – but some knowledge of oil is required. Onshore welders, mechanics, electricians and painters can fit many entry level oil rig job descriptions as well, if you are honest about your prior experience.
Further up the chain of command are the Roughnecks, Crane Operators, Pumpmen, Derrickmen and Drillers. These job descriptions define key players in an oil rig operation. If you start out as a Roustabout, you’ll have the option of moving up into a Roughneck’s spot or, if your specialty is on deck, you might assist the Crane Operator, finally filling his/her position at a later date on the same rig or a different one.
All crew members work similar schedules, no matter their job description, that normally involve 12 hour days with three breaks throughout the day. Also, you will be working 14 days straight with no vacation. After that two weeks though, you’ll be able to enjoy 14 days off wherever you decide to go!