In an industry that's been historically dominated by male workers,
the oil and gas industry has taken a number of active steps to promote
enrollment of female workers. With the Bakken Shale formation booming
and consistently promising growth in the Gulf of Mexico, companies have
been scrambling to fill jobs. Many recruiters have set their sights on
a largely untapped set of potential workers: women.
According to the American Petroleum Institute, women currently account
for 19% of the oil and gas industry workforce. However, with views surrounding
the industry and women changing rapidly, that number is expected to grow
tremendously. The American Petroleum Institute projects that roles for
women in the oil industry will grow by 70,000 by the year 2030.
Available Jobs for Women in the Oil Industry Include:
Science and math-based roles, such as those involving geo-science, geology, chemical engineering, and
mechanical engineering, make up a number of jobs that require specialized
Business roles, such as managing projects, accounting, and human resources are equally
important in keeping drill sites running efficiently, keeping them staffed,
and helping companies to expand beneficially.
Information technology roles are important to maintain and develop the complex types of technology that
keep rigs running efficiently, including surveying and drilling technology.
Trade-specific roles such as carpenters, electricians, and welders are essential for implementing
the functions on a rig, including the necessary construction to keep the
Other assorted roles, such as physicians, trainers, and instructors are important in the oil
industry, especially in remote drill sites and on offshore rigs.
With laws in place such as those established by Title VII, companies and
supervisors are barred from discriminating against women based on their
gender. Growing regulations against sexual harassment have also contributed
to a more welcome environment in a number of oil and gas roles. With a
wide range of well-paying jobs opening up to those who are willing to
train for them, many women are turning their sights to the oil and gas
industry as a valuable resource for potential employment.
Gender Discrimination Laws
Employers cannot legally discriminate against an employee or applicant
based on gender. This means that employers are legally required to pay
both sexes equal pay for performing the same job and cannot use gender
as a basis for determining pay rates, titles, benefits, or promotions.
If an employee believes he or she has been discriminated against based
on gender, a case can be opened with the Equal Employment Opportunity
Commission and lawsuit can be filed against the employer.
Sexual Harassment Laws
In addition to gender discrimination laws, employees are also protected
by sexual harassment laws against unwanted sexual advances in the workplace.
The Supreme Court has divided sexual harassment into two general categories:
hostile environment and tangible employment actions. A hostile environment
is one in which an employee experiences general harassment from co-workers,
supervisors, vendors, or any other party that he or she may encounter
on a daily basis at work. An example of a hostile environment could be
a pattern of inappropriate jokes or crude behavior that makes the victim
feel harassed or uncomfortable. A tangible employment action is one in
by a supervisor or co-worker of influence that either directly suggests
or implies that if an employee does not comply with the advances, he or
she will be fired.