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Working offshore needs many different skillsets. What will you bring to the team?

Published on: 18 Nov 2019

BP Offshore Article

Technicians at BP work in a hugely diverse variety of roles, at different levels and in many environments. As part of a vast, world-class company, they enjoy real opportunities to develop their careers and skills base, all while helping to deliver the heat, light and mobility that the world relies on.

To better understand how an offshore technicians’ team experiences life at BP, we had a chat with Joanie, Paul, Ryan and Geoff. When talking about their time at BP, they all agreed with Joanie that, ‘At BP, everyone has something to add to the team. Given our industry, trust plays an essential role and we rely upon the expertise of our colleagues and their commitment to doing things right. Ryan added, ‘I would say it’s about having a ‘hands-on’ attitude, and with that we can tackle some of the world’s biggest questions together.’

Paul is an instrument technician at BP, and he’s been working offshore for over 25 years. He says, ‘My role is highly varied. In the morning I might be verifying software, and in the afternoon I might be dismantling hardware. The diverse aspects of this job and the ability to develop a varied skill-set is what kept me doing it for so long.’

Working offshore is an exciting experience, but it can also be a challenge for technicians and their families due to the time spent offshore. But the routine of reliable work and the periods of free time spent at home can be a plus for everyone. Paul says, ‘My wife was soon able to get used to my work schedule and travel commitments and plan ahead. BP is a reliable company and good employer, so working here has served both me and my family well.’

Family played an important role in Geoff’ and Joanie’s decision to work offshore too. Joanie decided to join BP having been inspired by her dad’s offshore career, while Geoff says, ‘My family and friends were the main influence in encouraging me to get a job offshore. Many people from my local community have worked offshore and I could see why it was a good career option.’

As a trainee process technician, Joanie is now building her path to becoming an experienced technician at BP. Like Geoff and Ryan, she joined BP through the OPITO programme - which consists of two years of college studies and two years of offshore experience. Having joined the business just under a year ago she’s received her team’s full support and guidance as she seeks to develop a great career in the energy industry. 

When asked what surprised her the most about her time at BP, she says, ‘I thought it may be challenging to work in a traditionally male-dominated role but that’s not the case. I receive plenty of guidance and it helps that I have a supportive mentor. Plus, I have the opportunity to attend networking events for women in the energy industry from all over the world.’

As well as supporting its employees’ ambitions, BP’s top priority is safety. And as an operations technician, Ryan is responsible for making sure everything is running smoothly. He says, ‘At BP, I’ve always been reassured that safety comes first. Here, we definitely put people and their wellbeing ahead of all else. While the energy industry is constantly innovating and ways of working are changing, BP always ensures that safety is never compromised.’

Safety plays a huge role in Geoff’s day to day activity as a mechanical technician too. He says, ‘As a mechanical technician, I look at mechanical components, gas turbines, pumps, values, compressors, nuts and bolts and everything in between. Safety has to be the number one priority and I’m pleased to work for a company that really believes that.’

The technicians also mentioned BP’s many benefits. They talked about the significant periods of time off which they can spend with their family, the competitive salaries, great pension schemes and the rewards of working in their own teams. Geoff added, ‘It’s always so rewarding to come back to the same place, catching-up with your team and finding out what they’ve been up to. It surprises some people, but offshore is a nice, comfortable environment to work in and its definitely improved by the sense of team spirit.’

And when offshore, the teams still enjoy home comforts including access to a gym, a recreational room with snooker, Sky TV in their rooms and the occasional quiz night. 

If you’re interested in becoming a technician at BP or would like to find out more about where a career with us could take you, please visit our website here.

You might have experience in plumbing, have been part of the Royal Air Force (RAF), worked within a nuclear power station or refinery - or simply just be passionate about building a successful career within the energy industry with a relevant trade discipline. Whatever the case, at BP you can keep advancing while making a meaningful impact for millions.