Are you ready for adventure, great money and benefits, 6 months on and 6 months off? Are you in really good physical shape and willing to work hard? If the answers to these questions is yes, then the job of a roustabout on an oil rig might just be what you're looking for.
The petroleum exploration and production industry is the largest industry in the world. Because oil and gas are the life's blood of the world, it's an industry that is expanding, regardless of the current economic conditions and it's in real need of people willing to work hard and get compensated very well for their efforts.
In order to keep up with the world's thirst for oil, oil companies are inventing and deploying exciting new technologies that are allowing exploration and extraction where it was impossible just a few years ago. In the Dallas-Fort Worth area of Texas, for instance, they are doing horizontal drilling which allows them to go under existing structures and leave very little impact on the land.
Where do you want to work? Jobs are available wherever there is oil and oil extraction is occurring all over the world - as of 2005 statistics, the Middle East produced 31% of the world's oil with North America (including Canada's oil sands) producing 16.5% and Central and South America producing the least at 9%. The North Sea, Asia, and Africa are all set to become much bigger players in the development of their oil reserves.
If drilling in the Arctic Natural Wildlife Refuge and the Alaska Natural Gas Pipeline project gain approval from the American Congress, a vast number of new oil jobs will come onto the market. The demand is for people willing to do the dirty work on drilling rigs, on the pipelines and in the refineries even though they may not have all the formal qualifications. Demand is also high for white collar workers who have degrees in various areas of petroleum engineering and geosciences.
Three of the most prominent places exploration and extraction of oil is taking place - the oil sands fields in Alberta, Canada, the Bekkan Formation in North Dakota, USA and Barnet Shale Fields in Texas, USA - all of these are crying out for both experienced and entry level workers.
For many of the jobs open around the world, you can expect $50,000 to $75,000 a year for an entry level job. And with incredible potential for promotion, the career ladder on an oil rig means as you move from roustabout to roughneck to assistant driller and even to rig supervisor, you can expect significant pay increases.
It's not work for the faint-hearted though, many of these are jobs involving hard physical labour around heavy equipment and you'll have to stay on your toes. You could be working either offshore and onshore, in remote locations and often in extreme weather. But with the right attitude, a strong work ethic, the right training and qualifications you can make the oil industry your next port of call.