Who's hiring in big oil: an alternative-data approach

1 week ago by James Mattone in Features, Trends

Across five of the biggest publicly traded oil companies — BP ($NYSE:BP), Chevron ($NYSE:CVX), Exxon Mobil ($NYSE:XOM), Royal Dutch Shell ($ON:RDSA), and Total ($NYSE:TOT) — hiring is up as the industry convenes in Houston, Texas for CERAweek.

Among the pack, BP has the most job openings, as well as the biggest growth over time since October. As of March 10, BP has 623 job openings on its careers page, 111 more than Total and 322 more than Shell.

A closer look at BP

BP is mostly hiring for Downstream — refining of petroleum crude oil — and in Corporate, with Upstream jobs — searching and drilling for oil — having more than half as many job openings as Downstream jobs. The most common jobs within these categories are for Sourcing Analysts (Corporate) and OEM Senior Account Managers (Downstream).

BP Job Category

Number of Openings

Downstream

272

Corporate & Functions

207

Upstream

117

Integrated Supply & Trading

22

Biofuels

3

Unlisted

2

Most of BP's jobs are based in Budapest, Hungary, an operation site for the company's Global Business Services department. Compared to the number of job openings in its known HQ of London, there are 68 more job openings in Hungary in BP Corporate.

BP Brand

City

State

Country

Number of Openings

Corporate & Functions

Budapest

Central

HUN

88

Downstream

Shanghai

Central

CHN

36

Downstream

Gelsenkirchen

North Rhine

DEU

36

Downstream

Chicago

Illinois

USA

29

Upstream

Houston

Texas

USA

26

Corporate & Functions

Szeged

N/A

HUN

24

Upstream

Baku

East

AZE

22

Corporate & Functions

London

South East

GBR

20

Corporate & Functions

Kuala Lumpur

Central

MYS

19

Upstream

Denver

Colorado

USA

17

The three largest locales for Downstream hiring are in Shanghai, the North Rhine in Germany, and Chicago, all relatively central or important locations in three major continents. Houston, Texas is where the most Upstream jobs are, which is in line with what most Americans assume about oil in Texas.

Total in second thanks to boom in Technician jobs

Total comes in second in terms of job openings, listing 532 positions on March 10.

Within this overall increase, Total can thank a bit of a bump in hires for petrolium technicians and other related technician jobs for this spring. So far, the pattern shows that Total looks for technicians in March (when May graduates are mostly looking for jobs) and in August.

Exxon Mobil has quantity in Engineering, growth in IT and Operations

After a dip in openings on New Year's Day, Exxon Mobil is in the middle of the pack when it comes to the number of job listings on its website. As of March 10, it had 505 listings on its website.

The majority of its listings are in Engineering and Commercial and business.

Exxon MobileJob Categories

Number of Openings

Engineering

126

Commercial and business

109

Operations

103

Information technology

64

Research and technology

26

Finance, accounting and tax

25

Technical and administrative support

15

Safety, security, health and environment

12

Human resources

10

Geoscience

9

Law

3

Project management

3

What is surprising is that, since March of 2018, hiring for both of these categories is down. Over the past year, the number of openings for Exxon Mobil Engineering positions decreased by 20.75%, and Commercial and business positions by 11.38%.

Meanwhile, IT and Operations jobs are up during the same time period. Specifically, Operations openings saw an increase of 35.53%, while IT job postings more than doubled over the past year even with the January drop-off.

Chevron is looking for Customer Service reps

Chevron had an up-and-down seven-month clip for public job postings. From October 10 to March 10, there was only a net decrease in seven postings, but there were plenty of peaks and valleys throughout the half year.

Unlike the other four companies, the most common job postings for Chevron are Customer Service Representatives. On March 10, Customer Service Rep postings accounted for 70% of Chevron's total job postings.

These jobs are also a fancy name for someone who works at a gas station. A sample posting for a position in Beaverton, Oregon shows a description that matches what one would do as a cashier at a convenience store located inside a Chevron (or other) gas station.

In other words, most of Chevron's job postings on its websites are for people who do not need a college degree, extensive training, or certifications. That differs from the other companies it is competing against, as they keep such job postings seperate from their overall careers page.

Because Chevron is ranked #13 in the Fortune 500 with 51,900 employees — compared to Exxon Mobil, ranked #2 on the list and holding 71,200 employees — it seems as if the company isn't hiring as much as its peers due to its size.

Shell may not have strength in numbers, but it's investing into data science

Although Royal Dutch Shell has the least amount of job openings compared to its four competitors, it saw an 34.72% increase in job listings over the past seven months.

One interesting trend among Shell's data is that it seems to be investing into data science. It had 13 positions containing the word "data" listed on March 9, more than triple than what is was looking for in September of 2018.

We looked further into this trend, as well as alternative energy, in another piece that covered how some of the other companies were hiring for those kinds of jobs.

James Mattone

James is the Associate Editor at Thinknum Media, and he has an interest in video games, music, and tech news. You can find him on Twitter @TheJamesMattone.

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