Top 5 Reasons Energy Companies Can’t Recruit

EnergyBOOM! Did you hear that? It’s the Energy Industry! Unconventional oil and gas production have created more than 1 million jobs, with 800,000 more expected by 2015. That classifies as a BOOM! But with all of this growth, the Energy Industry faces some big challenges in finding people who are interested, qualified, and available to do the work. Last year alone, there were 10 million skilled labor positions unfilled in the United States. The “Great Crew Change” is having an impact…that time where experienced Baby Boomers are retiring and leaving the oilfield, and the younger and inexperienced Gen X and Gen Y workers enter.

I’ve been involved in recruiting within the Energy Industry now for many years, and I have experienced and seen some very consistent strategies and processes that can provide these companies with a solid pipeline of quality candidates. There are those companies who see how unfilled positions within their company impact their bottom line…levels of production go down, turnover is killing them with unnecessary costs, and then there’s the work they are having to turn away because they just don’t have the personnel to do it. Millions and millions of dollars are being lost because they just keep trying to do the same old things and feel that it is sufficient…but it’s not. Not even close.

Here are the top 5 reasons why the Energy Industry has trouble filling their open jobs…

1) Dysfunction. Many times I am called to go consult with an Energy client and evaluate what their issues are within recruiting. When I began to ask about their processes, they often tell me that each field manager has their own way of finding people for their team. Translation….we have no process. Throwing warm bodies at the problem is not a solution. This causes your attrition rates to skyrocket (as high as 80-90% in some cases that I have seen). Look, I get it. Field personnel are different than hiring for corporate positions, but that doesn’t mean you can’t establish good, solid, efficient, and cost effective strategies and processes to address both field personnel recruiting, as well as corporate recruiting.

2) Inexperience. Organizations don’t like to invest in corporate recruiters. They do it…but they don’t like it. So as a result, they go hire inexperienced, junior recruiters with little to no experience so they don’t have to pay them as much. To compound the problem, they aren’t provided with the tools and resources needed to effective in their jobs. So now you have inexperienced recruiters with no tools to go do what you are asking them to do. That’s a recipe for disaster! Simply posting a job on Rigzone and waiting for people to apply is not recruiting. Recruiting skilled labor is tricky and it presents many unique challenges that most recruiters haven’t faced. Experience matters when finding the best talent and enticing them your way.

3) Ignorance. Many just don’t know that there are effective ways to recruit for their industry. They hear their buddies at other companies talk about how tough it is to find good people, and they just accept that this is the way things are and there must not be anything they can do about it. But there is! I’ve had excellent success with finding good, qualified people for the companies who have given me me the opportunity! When you allow me to come in and bring the strategies, processes, technologies, and talent that I have on my team – you will see a huge difference. One of those companies received a $15 million ROI in the first year alone. It can be done!

4) Urgency. I live in the recruiting agency world, and we have to produce or we don’t get paid. We have Service Level Agreements that outline what is acceptable and what is not. When an organization partners with me, then we all hav to be in agreement on the urgency of the matter. I can’t live up to what you have asked me to do if I present qualified people to you, and then it takes your managers 2 weeks to give me feedback on the candidates presented, or to schedule an interview. These openings are real, they represent a real need for you internally. These are revenue generating possibilities for both you and me. But many times, I see organizations who have positions open for months and no one is held accountable.

5) Assumed Cost. There is an assumption out there that you just can’t afford to outsource your recruiting efforts to an agency that has more experienced recruiters, established processes, better technologies, vast resources, and the urgency to get the job filled. I would argue that you can’t afford not to! 10 million skilled labor positions unfilled last year in the US? What do you think those unfilled positions actually cost the companies involved? Lost revenue, reputation with their customers, overtime expenses to pay others to cover those open spots…the money signs just keep on rolling. You are already paying a big cost! In many cases, you are already paying more for these reasons than the cost of outsourcing your efforts to me. Isn’t it at least exploring?

There are 8 typical benefits to outsourcing your recruiting efforts:

1) Reduced turnover rates

2) Reduced cost per hire

3) Reduced time to fill

4) EEO compliance standards are met

5) Increased quality of hires

6) Standardized recruitment process established

7) Accurate metrics established

8) Improved corporate brand in the marketplace

Many companies find great success in this type of engagement. It saves them money and relieves a big pain point. Why not at least reach out to me and let’s see if it is the right option for you?


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