Mission & Name
US Foreign Policy (Dr. El-Najjar's Articles)
"Dirty, Difficult, And Dangerous":
Why American Millennials Won't Work in
Oil Price, Al-Jazeerah, CCUN, July
Like many industries today, the oil industry is trying to
sell its many job opportunities to the fastest growing portion of the
global workforce: Millennials. But unlike any other industry, oil and
gas is facing more challenges in persuading the
environmentally-conscious Millennials that oil is "cool".
the Super Bowl earlier this year, the American Petroleum Institute (API)
launched an ad
geared toward Millennials, who now make up the
largest generation in the U.S. labor force.
"This ain't your
daddy's oil", the ad says, in what API
described as "a modern look at how oil is integrated into products
consumers use now and in the future supported by bold visuals."
Despite its pitch to speak the Millennials' language and reach out to
the elusive generation, the ad
sparked anger with many consumers and viewers.
continue to have the most negative opinion toward the oil industry
compared to all other industries, and they don't see a career in oil and
gas as their top choice of a workplace. The oil industry's talent
scouting and recruiting methods of the past are failing to reach
Millennials, who want their work to have a positive impact on society,
various studies and polls have found—a rather big ask for the oil
This failure to reach the group that makes up the
largest portion of today's workforce—which now surpasses Generation
X—points to a huge problem for the oil sector, as Baby Boomers move into
retirement in droves.
Not only are Millennials snubbing oil and
gas because of its negative image, they also seek different job perks
than previous generations sought, and in this regard, the oil industry
will need to do more as it becomes increasingly obvious that Millennials
want different things than what oil executives think they want.
A total of 14 percent of Millennials say they would not want to work in
the oil and gas industry because of its negative image—the highest
percentage of any industry, McKinsey
said in September 2016.
Young people see the industry as
dirty, difficult, and dangerous, according to an EY
survey published last month. EY's survey polled Millennials—the
20-to-35-year-olds today—as well as Generation Z coming after them, and
found that younger generations "question the longevity of the industry
as they view natural gas and oil as their parents' fuels. Further, they
primarily see the industry's careers as unstable, blue-collar,
difficult, dangerous and harmful to society."
In addition, two
out of three teens believe the oil and gas industry causes problems
rather than solves them, the survey showed.
So ‘not your daddy's
oil' is not sinking in with Millennials and Generation Z, and with many
of them, it never will, despite the oil lobbies' marketing efforts to
try to make it sound like an attractive career path.
to executives polled by EY, the top three
drivers for young people would be salary (72 percent), opportunity
to use the latest technology (43 percent), and a good work-life balance
(38 percent). But young people—although they are also prioritizing
salary—have other views on what they look for in a job. Salary is still
the top priority at 56 percent, but a close second comes good work-life
balance (49 percent), with job stability and on-the-job happiness
equally important at 37 percent.
Executives are underestimating
the importance of work-life balance and stability for Millennials, while
overestimating the allure of technology as a factor. It's not surprising
that Millennials are not as attracted to the opportunity to use new tech
as oil executives believe they are – Millennials generally don't see
technology as a perk, they take it for granted.
Millennials don't see the oil and gas industry as innovative – a major
driver of career choice among this generation. According to a recent
report by Accenture, "Despite evidence to the contrary, many
Millennials believe the sector is lacking innovation, agility and
creativity, as well as opportunities to engage in meaningful work. In
fact, only 2 percent of U.S. college graduates consider the oil and gas
industry their top choice for employment." Accenture is warning that
‘the talent well has run dry' and said: "We believe the growing
workforce deficit will, in fact, be a greater barrier to oil and gas
companies' upturn success than any deficits that might exist in capital,
equipment or supplies."
The oil and gas industry is losing the
competition for talent recruitment to industries that are more appealing
to Millennials, and U.S. oil and gas firms will face the talent crunch
first, according to Accenture.
"Any mature industry has to think
about the fact that there's a new sheriff in town with new values, new
spending habits," Jeff Fromm, an expert in marketing to American
And if the oil and gas industry wants to get this
‘new sheriff in town' on board, it needs to profoundly change
recruitment strategies and talent sourcing. But with the negative image
that is probably set to become even more negative—despite oil
organizations' marketing efforts—oil and gas has a huge workforce
Link to original article:
By for Oilprice.com
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