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A world of opportunity, but is it for you?

Posted by Jim Fearon, Hays VP, on Thursday, Jul 23, 2015

Oil & Gas relocationOver the past decade, buoyed by high commodity prices and the increasing value of forestry products, companies have expanded operations into ever more remote and harsh locations, with limited infrastructure and a shortage of local skilled workers. This creates demand for workers from out of province or out of the country, with incentives such as the ‘hazardous danger pay’ attracting employees worldwide.

HR can only do so much
Human Resources plays an important role in employee safety. Risk management policies and behavioral safety coaching are essential and help prepare workers. However, HR can’t guarantee safety and workers can react differently on-site – it takes the right match of attitude and temperament to be successful.

The right fit
What qualities does a worker need to be successful in a hazardous environment?

  • Good diplomacy
    Understanding and adjusting to cultural differences can be challenging. Fluency in the local language is not always realistic, so being an effective and patient communicator will help you break the language barrier.

  • Levelheadedness
    Employers tell us the ideal candidate is someone who understands the importance of staying calm and who can resolve problems efficiently under intense pressure.
  • Teamwork
    Projects in unfamiliar locations and with people from a range of backgrounds can be challenging. Extreme weather and long hours add additional pressure so the ability to integrate into a team quickly and build good team relations is valuable to an employer.

A final thought
Not everyone is suited to these environments, but there are lots of benefits to working in remote locations so carefully weigh the pros and cons, and take your own strengths and weaknesses into account when considering your options for travel and career progression

Is your next career move waiting?


Talk to Jim Fearon, Hays VP, about the Alberta labour market, trends in oil and gas, and in the construction industry.

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