What does a Petroleum Engineer do?

A petroleum engineer is responsible for the designing of drill equipment and planning of methods and techniques used to extract oil and gas from both onshore and offshore reserves. Duties include recommendations of drilling efforts based on cost, effort and feasibility weighed against returns. The career advancement of petroleum engineers typically results in seniority that provides greater independence and decision-making responsibilities for bigger and more challenging projects subject to obtaining a Professional Engineering (PE) license.

Petroleum engineers require a minimum of a bachelor's degree in engineering with a master's degree preferred. Most companies value a professional engineering license which is usually associated with more experienced engineers. Strong candidates will possess high attention to detail along with excellent analytical skills that are conveyed accurately in reports and presentations.

  • Design drilling equipment used in the process of extracting oil and gas from both onshore and offshore reserves
  • Make recommendations based on cost, effort and feasibility
  • Devise plans and methods to effectively drill fields to recover oil and gas
  • Develop and modify tools and designs based on performance observation
  • Ensure equipment is installed, operated and maintained properly for effective use
  • Work closely with the procurement team to procure the necessary equipment and tools for projects
  • Work together with geoscientists and other specialists to analyze the geologic formation containing the oil and gas reservoir
  • Monitor drilling operations as needed
  • Master's degree in engineering with coursework in the petroleum industry preferred
  • Professional engineering license preferred
  • Proven experience working as an engineer in the petroleum industry
  • Knowledgeable in engineering drilling techniques and methods
  • Strong industrial knowledge and understanding of market conditions
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Good reporting and presentation skills
  • Skilled in computer technology and Microsoft applications
  • Ability to travel offshore as required

Average Years of Experience

0 - 1
2%
2 - 4
3%
5 - 7
1%
8+
94%

Common Skill Sets

Evaluating
Conducting
Reviews
Pipeline
Splicing
Agile
Python
Continuous Integration

Petroleum Engineer Seniority Levels

L1
Petroleum Engineer I
CA$94,163/yr
L2
Engineer
22% made the transition
Project Engineer
22% made the transition
See Career Path

Petroleum Engineer Salaries

Average Base Pay

$118,274 /yr
Same as national average
Not including cash compensation
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$79K
Median: $118K
$178K
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Glassdoor Estimated Salary

Petroleum Engineer Jobs