the pipeline - Hay Group

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Oil and gas sector viewpoint


the pipeline How oil and gas leaders can engage, enable and retain technical experts

The oil and gas sector relies on highly prized, highly paid technical experts; yet worryingly, Hay Group’s research suggests that sector organisations are struggling to secure the commitment of these specialists. With engineering, geotechnical and petrotechnical skills increasingly in short supply, how can firms fend off fierce competition to retain this key talent? >>

The impact of low engagement and enablement To be effective, employees need to be highly motivated (engaged) and ably supported (enabled) to perform their best (see fig. 1). This means placing the right people in the right roles; creating efficient work processes; fostering a supportive and collaborative working environment; and providing the tools and structures to allow employees to do their job.

Low High

Here in this report we explore the data in more detail, the areas that may be contributing to the engagement challenge, and the ways organisations can address these and retain key talent.

Without these enabling factors, even the most engaged workers will eventually become frustrated. Unfortunately, these employees are often an organisation’s crucial high-performers. They are extremely motivated, but discouraged by the barriers preventing them from doing a good job, they will be quick to leave (approximately 18 months to 2 years).


Our analysis shows that the sector scores 13 percentage points less than the high-performing companies for staff intending to stay with their employer for more than five years. At a time when key technical skills are in demand, companies risk losing key specialist experts. And when talent leaves, engagement, morale and productivity often follows.

According to Hay Group’s wider research, firms rated highly by employees for both engagement and enablement are five times more likely to exceed performance expectations than those who are merely engaged.


Hay Group works extensively with clients on employee engagement research, with over 15 millions respondents in our database. When we compared data from oil and gas employees against 40 high-performing companies – firms that consistently achieve around twice the global average return on investments, assets and equity - the results show an engagement challenge.


Engagement Detached


Low engagement and high enablement

High engagement and high enablement



Low engagement and low enablement

High engagement and low enablement

Fig 1. Engagement and enablement model

©2013 Hay Group. All rights reserved


Terms of engagement: Oil and gas

Our research findings The engagement challenge Oil & gas employees rate their organisation lower than those at the world’s high performing companies by:


for their ability to retain talent


for staff intending to stay with the company for more than 5 years

However, employees rate their organisation similar to or above the world’s high performing companies for:


recommending the company to family/friends as a place to work



the ability of the company to attract high quality employees

What is contributing to the engagement challenge? Oil & gas employees rate their organisation lower than those at the world’s high performing companies by: Minimal reward and recognition

Ineffective leadership



for overall trust and confidence in senior management

for managers consistently acting on what th