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Oil and Gas Resume Tips
A resume is one of the most frustrating documents you will ever have to prepare for yourself. The trends are constantly changing and it is impossible to create a resume that will please every single person who reads it. On top of that, it is also one of the most crucial documents that can open doors in your career path when done right – which is a stressful thought all on its own.
However, an oil & gas resume doesn’t have to be anything overly complex or extensive. In fact, we’ve developed 5 helpful tips to help you construct a simple, accomplishments-based resume for a career in the oil & gas industry — whether you’re an engineer, foreman, maintenance manager, health and safety inspector, or entry-level candidate.
The Top 5 Oil & Gas Resume Tips That Will Bring Guaranteed Results:
- How long should my oil & gas resume be?
In the oil & gas sector, your resume should typically be between one and two pages long. Recent graduates vying for an internship with a major oil & gas company will benefit most from a single page resume. It’s important to showcase relevant school projects and work experience that can capture the reader’s attention within eight seconds.
On the other hand, a senior-level professional should consider a two-page document, which can include a “Notable Projects” section on the first page to highlight at least 3 high-profile ventures (including scope, cost, crew size, goal, and results). An employer will generally take more time to read a seasoned oil & gas professional’s resume to ensure that he or she meets all practical requirements.
Additionally, since many oil & gas professionals tend to work under contract, you may also consider adding a “Contract Experience” section, where you can list 5 – 10 of your most recent contract roles. There’s no need to go into detail about those roles unless you have significant accomplishments to elaborate upon.
- How far back should I go on my oil & gas resume?
Your resume should go into detail on any relevant positions you’ve held within the last 10 years. Positions that date back longer than 10 years can be included on the resume simply in a listed “Earlier Positions” section. You may also want to remove the dates from older roles to avoid the risk of ageism — an unfortunate circumstance that tends to occur frequently within the oil & gas industry.
- Should I put my education first, or my experience?
Whichever is most recent and relevant is what should go first on the resume. If you recently completed a diploma program or apprenticeship, then education should take the first spot. Be sure to include relevant courses of study and corresponding projects, as they will indicate that you are up-to-date on current industry practices and the oil & gas economy. If you can’t think of any notable school projects, including at least 2 – 3 condensed course descriptions will set you apart from the competition. Otherwise, your experience should take precedence over education if you already have over one year of work experience under your belt.
- Does my resume need an objective statement?
No. Objective statements are an old-fashioned practice and are no longer preferred by hiring managers. Instead, you should use a third-person, full-sentence-structure “value statement” at the top of your resume. When applying for an oil & gas position, this statement should typically take up 5 – 6 lines and illustrate your most prominent skills while also highlighting your years of experience, relevant responsibilities you’ve mastered over time, and at least one notable accomplishment or project.
You can begin your value statement with a sentence that immediately showcases your expertise, such as: “A resourceful, solution-focused, and team-oriented oil & gas professional offering 15+ years of progressive leadership experience overseeing complex directional drilling operations across Western Canada.” Then it’s just a matter of briefly detailing ongoing projects, where you’ve worked in the past, and how you’ve helped previous companies flourish.
- Should I include my references on the resume?
No. This is another old-fashioned resume practice. You should not even include a line saying “References Available upon Request.” Nowadays, if a Hiring Manager is interested in corresponding with your references, they will request that you provide them with a list either at the in-person interview or via email. The only time you should include references with your resume is if the employer explicitly asks for it.
Now that you’ve got the basics down, take it a step further and learn about the keywords and formats you should be using in order to really improve your resume.
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