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In the drilling industry’s continuing journey toward zero incidents, competence has emerged not just as a buzzword but as a pathway to the next safety step-change. “Having a competent, well-trained and credentialed workforce is critical...

Critical Issues in Drilling & Completions

20121210-_DSC0482-EditBy Linda Hsieh, managing editor

In the drilling industry’s continuing journey toward zero incidents, competence has emerged not just as a buzzword but as a pathway to the next safety step-change. “Having a competent, well-trained and credentialed workforce is critical to our long- and short-term success,” David Williams, Noble Corp, said.

For IADC, which is undertaking a series of industrywide and cross-industry initiatives to professionalize its workforce, competence encompasses three aspects: capability, compliance and credentials. This means people know what to do and how to do it, and they actually do the right things in the right way. Credentialing is the third part, and it means “verifying against industrywide standards that personnel are properly skilled, trained and competent in their jobs,” IADC president Stephen Colville said.

Industry leaders also advocate diversifying its recruitment base in its search for talent, both in terms of geography and educational disciplines. Further, team-based training is gaining recognition as a valuable tool for ensuring not just individual competence but field competence. This means industry personnel know how to act and interact with each other as a team.

“Individual competency is fine, but it doesn’t provide us full shelter from an incident. We normally say that the person in the driller’s chair is our last barrier. That is true, and we should train that person, but we have to remember that he also has to rely on his team to complete his tasks,” Søren Risgaard Jeppesen of Maersk Drilling said. “It’s not just about him but the team around him.”

One comment

  1. The initiative to verify the competency of the oilfield workers is so important to the growth of the industry and the safety of all. Finding experienced oilfield workers is a big challenge for some operators. We can get oilfield service companies the working capital they need to grow, but without skilled workers they can’t take advantage of the growth opportunities.
    Sam Thacker
    President, Business Finance Solutions
    512-990-8756

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