Getting Started as a Driller with No Job Experience
Offshore drilling jobs are amongst the toughest around. Twelve hour shifts in all weather conditions for weeks on end are certainly not for everyone.
However, for those who can take the pace, a job as a driller is also amongst one of the highest paid around, and has no shortage of perks. It is also
possible to get started along the path to becoming a driller with no relevant job experience.
Where to Start
The entry level position for offshore drilling jobs is as a roustabout. Most people who work on an oil rig, all the way to the top jobs, started their careers
as a roustabout. This involves most of the heavy manual labour and basic maintenance on board the rig, such as painting the deck and hauling
equipment from one location to another. Yet even this entry-level position carries a high salary upwards of US$50,000.
No experience or formal qualifications are required to become a roustabout, and so this first step on the way to an offshore drilling job is perfect for
anyone starting out in their career or seeking a change of direction. All that is required is that you are over 18, at least 5' 5" tall, and are prepared to
work hard during long shifts in all weather conditions. Most companies prefer to recruit from within their own ranks, so with a good attitude and the
right skills it is possible to rise high.
After mastering your job as a roustabout, you can expect to be promoted to the position of roughneck. Roughnecks still do a lot of the hard physical
labour, but their jobs are more involved with the drilling process and can include laying the drilling pipe and inserting and extracting the drill. It is
possible to reach this level after less than a year as a roustabout.
Once you have proved yourself as a roughneck you will be promoted to the level of assistant derrickman, or pumpman, going on to become a
derrickman. The derrickman has more responsibility and hence a higher salary, as he is in charge of the pumping room and the maintenance of the