How many jobs does a single drilling rig create and where are they?

Drilling rigs are being laid down by the hundreds. How far do the ripples reach?

May 14, 2015

Subscribe Email This Post Print This Post Bookmark and Share

Each well that’s drilled in Canada produces more than just a stream of hydrocarbons. They also create new jobs, additional economic activity and tax revenue. In good times, that’s good news for just about everyone. But with hundreds of drilling rigs now being laid down in the field many of those benefits are about to disappear, if they haven’t already. And make no mistake: rigs are definitely being laid down. A February 2015 rig count from the Canadian Association of Oilwell Drilling Contractors (CAODC) noted that just 318 of a total 792 rigs in Canada were active, resulting in a rig utilization rate of 40.2 per cent. To put that in perspective, in February of 2014 570 of a total 810 rigs were active for a utilization rate of 70.4 per cent. So what are the effects of having all that iron sitting on the sidelines? This snapshot of the second-order impacts of the average drilling rig, from the cost of spudding a well through to its completion, should tell you all you need to know.

Men (not) at Work
Direct and indirect jobs created from a single well (job counts vary depending on region/commodity/price)

Source: Petroleum Services Association of Canada

Public-Private Partnership
The average tax receipts from a single conventional well

Source: Economic Impacts of Drilling, Completing and Operating Conventional Oil and Gas Wells in Western Canada, Canadian Energy Research Institute

Capital Requirements
A breakdown of average well costs in various Canadian jurisdictions (average costs over one-year period)

Source: 2015 Well Cost Study, Petroleum Services Association of Canada

Follow @AlbertaOilMag

Issue Contents


8 Responses to “How many jobs does a single drilling rig create and where are they?”

  1. Marius says:

    I can’t see the wellsite geologist(s)..

  2. Bruno says:

    Pour l’équipe

  3. Kerry says:

    Or the Mwd… Guess we don’t count hey?

  4. Jill says:

    I don’t know about shore side rigs, I work offshore. The semis I’ve been on usually have about 135 people working on board and the drillships up around 175-200. That’s for each hitch. So double that for each rig.
    Then you have to add in the boats who supply the rigs with everything they need (food, pipe, mud, etc). They’ll have at least 1 crewboat (6-10 crew), 1 supply boat (8-12 crew). Usually more than that. Maybe a seismic boat or an intervention vessel or an extra ROV boat.
    Then you add in all the people working to supply all the things the rig needs to work, tools, cement, chemicals, mud, food, fuel, etc.
    People to do all the paperwork on shore (and there must be a lot since there’s a TON we have to do offshore!). Accountants, payroll, travel, training, etc. And to run the business side of the companies involved.
    I don’t know really, but I’d guess at least 1000 people altogether to support just one offshore floater.

  5. OffWhite says:

    … and the Company Man? Or Logistic or we could go on and on. But Kerry they (MWD) are probably considered under Directional Drilling or Auxiliary services.

  6. Mark Nicklom says:

    The direct and indirect jobs are incomplete not to mention the math doesn’t add up for the positions. What needs to be done is a complete list of all services that includes all the indirect jobs such as camp staff or hotels, resturants, gas stations, grocery stores, car salesman, etc…(the list is endless) and many others need to be on the indirect list. As per some previous comments they are missing key people that are on location but what about the office staff such as the technical staff, receptionist, logistics.
    This actually is disturbing that a so called industry group has provided these numbers. This type of incompetent reporting for our industry by experts ( PSAC, CAPP ) is why the country doesn’t know all the benefits to the Canadian economy provided by our industry.