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This article was originally published by Houston-based management consulting firm Trenegy Incorporated on January 6, 2021. While this article focuses on the oil and gas industry, these principles can be applied across any organization.

The oil and gas industry is facing a skills leakage due to recruitment cutbacks, layoffs, and accelerated retirements. Energy companies are rightly concerned as more than 100,000 workers in the U.S. oil and gas industry have been laid off over the past few months.

It’s not just oil and gas. Other industries are seeing the same trends.

This talent cannot be quickly or efficiently replaced with traditional hiring, internship, and recruiting efforts. Many young people are skeptical about the career prospects in the oil and gas industry and are favoring the high-tech industries. Furthermore, it is not realistic to expect newly minted engineers to troubleshoot pressure differentials or unstable formations as quickly as a seasoned engineer. The variables and challenges faced in the oil and gas fields (and many others) around the world cannot be filled with plug-and-play positions. This skills crisis threatens the oil and gas producer’s ability to continue to improve efficiencies and remain competitive.

Organizations must be equipped to respond quickly to fill the skills and talent gap, and talent must be harvested quickly before it is permanently lost. This means finding out where the skills and knowledge exist, creating a skills network, and connecting the skills network to the engineers and production workforce in the field. Here’s the path to start:

  1. Inventory Talent: Talent exists inside the vast array of oil and gas service, manufacturing, production, consulting, and transportation companies as well as independent contractors and retirees. The talent and experience are out there, but the challenge is identifying who has talent and classifying the type of expertise anyone can contribute.
  2. Build a Network: A mechanism to manage and connect the talent network needs to be established. The talent network could be across companies or within companies—it depends on your needs. A network will provide a means to build a skills database. Then, the right talent can be instantly accessible when people need help or have questions.
  3. Connect to the Field: The last step is connecting the skills network to the workforce facing day-to-day challenges in the field. The connection needs to be a simple, fast way for the field to request assistance without complex forms, lengthy searches, or waiting for hours.

The Right Tool for the Job

This probably all seems easier said than done. Fortunately, there’s a tool that does it all for you. EVAN360 allows you to fill skills and talent gaps quickly so you can stay efficient and competitive. Here’s how:

  • Inventory: Companies are using EVAN360 to inventory talent and manage who is an expert in any combination of skills or knowledge inside and outside the organization.
  • Build: The platform is a mechanism that allows organizations to assign any combination of skills to engineers, geologists, or other personnel. A robust network of experts is established so talent is available and accessible whenever support needs arise.
  • Connect: EVAN360 allows a remote worker to connect to an expert in just three clicks. The right experts are notified immediately through the skills network and are connected with the requester in the field within minutes. For example, many organizations are looking to retired engineers to provide expert advice on an as-needed, pay-by-the-hour basis. The retired workers can choose when they are available to help. Once connected, the expert and requester can have a live discussion via phone, video, or chat through EVAN360.

A byproduct of EVAN360 is the ability to capture interactions, videos, notes, and support sessions in dashboards. Organizations are using these dashboards to identify where talent gaps exist and share solutions for employees’ recurring problems/questions.

EVAN360 is bringing companies into a new generation of talent management and employee support. Get started for free today.

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