Career Profile: Jackie
Can you briefly describe your career to date?
“I started with Schlumberger Canada as a junior field engineer for Wireline in Grande Prairie, Canada. I trained in Abu Dhabi for 4 months before I came back to Canada to work for about a year as a field engineer. I took a short-term assignment to work in Midland, Texas, and, at the same time, became Grande Prairie’s radiation safety officer. After that, I got promoted to senior field engineer and moved to Nisku, Canada, where I have been for the past year learning other services, including coring, seismic, tractor, etc.”
What attracted you to Schlumberger, and why did you decide to join us?
“I had some previous experience being a field operator during various summer internships in northern Canada, and I knew that I wanted to continue working directly in the field, mixing engineering with hard hands-on work. I had heard that Schlumberger was a company with a world-renowned training program and that travel was also a possibility, whether it be during training, short-term assignments in different locations, or full-time work as an international mobile. This seemed like the dream job I had been searching for; combining the things I love to do on my own with a career that I could pursue.”
What do you enjoy most about working for Schlumberger?
“I enjoy the amount of responsibility that I have. There are not many jobs straight out of university where a 23 year old female can say that they manage a team of individuals, a set of assets and a truck to provide services for a client. And at the same time, I’m developing a multitude of skills for every aspect of life and future career paths that I may take.”
What is the training like at Schlumberger?
“The training in Schlumberger is some of the best that I can imagine a company having. After graduating from a Schlumberger training center, you have to be able to perform the service that you trained for, on your own, while managing a crew, and service any tool that you used to do the job. You have to be knowledgeable in all aspects of your job and your crew’s jobs to properly manage everything that goes on, both at the wellsite and in the shop. There is a steep learning curve. Safety training is also second to none and very highly regarded in the industry. In fact, many clients even participate in the driver training that we host in Canada.”
What opportunities are there for you to progress in your career?
“I can branch out in many directions once I’ve completed my field engineer training. Many aspects of line management, sales, recruiting, and HSE are available. But first, there are opportunities for me to challenge myself in different locations while still in the field by taking short-term assignments or transfers worldwide. Lately, Canada has been practicing multiskilling, which is used to help engineers expand their knowledge base and learn new services within a geographical location. This makes us more flexible and experienced when deciding a new career path to follow after the field.”
What types of challenges do you face in your job?
“Keeping a work-life balance can be challenging. The unpredictable schedule of middle of the night callouts and remote location work can make it difficult to keep up with my friends and family. During the winter months in Canada, it’s normal to be away from home for 3 weeks at a time just due to the long drives we have across the country to get to a job, and then go straight from that job to another one in a different part of the country. But on the other hand, for much of the summer, we can have months of vacation that we built up during the winter. This is when my schedule is more flexible and I can spend that time catching up with my friends and family.”
What is the working environment like?
“Since I’ve started, I’ve been really lucky to meet such great people. We all understand the trials and tribulations of the job, we work hard and we all revel in the good times together. One of my top goals is to have fun, and I think that to keep learning and to be in a work environment that can be very stressful at times, you need to be able to laugh with your crew and still have a good time.”
Think back to when you first started…what will you never forget?
“On my first day as a junior field engineer in Grande Prairie, Canada, I was asked to sign a document which would allow me to go on jobs out in the field. That was the moment when I realized that everything I did on this job was going to be real, would have tangible goals, and was going to be very hands-on.”