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As the global population continues to grow, the world will need to bring in top talent to ensure that we all have access to essentials such as food, water and energy. The oil and gas industry has been faced with a challenge of finding top talent, employing numerous tactics and strategies to attract the best and brightest.

A recently published article in the oil and gas industry monitor ‘Rigzone’ detailed some of the positions that this industry currently holds in the highest demand, providing an inside look at what skill set is the most coveted in 2014.

Electrical Engineer

The demand for electrical engineers in the oil and gas industry has risen in recent years as the number of students seeking electrical engineering degrees has dropped by 7%. However, the number of electrical engineering degrees conferred has risen since 2012, so there should be a much-needed influx of talent in the near future. Electrical engineers are incredibly useful in this sector, charged with intricate projects such as designing new power grids for developing cities. For their work, electrical engineers in the oil and gas industry can earn an average of over $94,000 per year, up from previous years.

Petroleum Engineer

The petroleum engineer is ready-made for this industry, as they are qualified to develop and improve both methods of extracting oil ¬†and gas from deposits underneath the earth’s surface and rethinking the ways that we can extract these resources from older wells. For this reason, it goes without saying that they must have strong technical knowledge, in addition to the standard communication, problem-solving, organization and leadership skills. Petroleum engineers also have to be project managers: cognizant of deadlines who naturally takes the initiative. Hiring managers love these candidates because their educational background prepares them to take a position in the field and hit the ground running.

Mechanical Engineer

Facing a similar problem as those seeking electrical engineering talent, hiring managers are finding that, despite an increase in mechanical engineering degrees conferred since 2012, there is still a shortage of mechanical engineers in the industry, making them the top priority target this year. With incredibly important responsibilities developing and maintaining resource extraction technologies (among other responsibilities), it is no wonder that they are in such high demand.

Geologist

Because natural resources like oil and gas are formed by natural geological processes over millions of years, it is important to have someone on the team who can identify new sources that can be safely and responsibly extracted. While geologists are needed in a wide range of industries, geoscientists are likely to be enticed by the average salary of $113,000, a notch higher than the geologist’s average salary across all industries, $91,000.

To attract these candidates, oil and gas firms will offer very attractive benefits like flexible work schedules and above-average salaries. While these specific jobs are in high demand, they are but a few of the many employment opportunities in this field.