Transferability Plays A Crucial Role In Canada’s Transforming Energy Industry

Photo courtesy of Cenovus

The changing landscape

In the energy industry’s current employment climate, it’s important to be nimble. The industry is evolving, and its workforce and employers must keep pace with the change. Total employment in the oil and gas industry declined 10% between December 2018 and December 2019, from 197,700 to 180,000 according to Statistics Canada’s Labour Force Survey (LFS) data. As a result of the decline, skilled and experienced workers are available.

Canada’s oil and gas industry is evolving, with an emphasis on innovation and technology development. As organizations work to increase productivity and efficiency and reduce their environmental footprint, worker requirements shift and opportunities to redeploy workers emerge. 

Hidden gems

Trained energy industry workers have a wealth of in-demand transferrable skills. Oil and gas services, petrochemicals, cleantech, renewables, high-tech in oil and gas and energy-related industrial construction sectors are growing and changing, in workforce numbers, in opportunity and in skills required. Information about these roles is often not easily available to job seekers – what the roles involve, the skills required and how their skills can transition from a previous role in the energy sector. It can seem complicated and over-whelming.

Likewise, oil and gas organizations in the midst of transition, know what new skills they need but may be lacking clear line of sight to the pool of talent available. It is creating barriers to filling the right roles with the right candidates.

Resources, knowledge and the next five steps

Wanting to make a career change? Take five easy steps to transition.

  1. Experience the Energy: Take the Tour. See what it is like at different worksites in the energy industry. PetroLMI’s virtual reality experience takes you up close to see some of the careers you might not have thought of and the leading-edge technologies that are transforming the industry. Don’t have an Oculus Go VR headset? Start with viewing the videos here.
  2. Explore your options. PetroLMI’s Career Explorer Tool evaluates your work preferences and connects you to potential transition opportunities. Start with the self-assessment tool.
  3. Expand your research. Browse and search PetroLMI’s Career Directory to find a new role that might pique your interest. The heavy lifting is already done. Choose a job category and search the roles profiled within it to find:
  • required competencies, qualifications, education and experience
  • the type of work environment and activities involved
  • available jobs.
  1. Explain your experience. Take PetroLMI’s career transition survey and explain your experience so that employers get a better understanding of you and the rest of the talent pool available to them.
  2. Energize your transition. Visit to explore the transferability of your current skills, knowledge and experience across high-tech in oil and gas, renewables, energy-related industrial construction, cleantech and petrochemical sectors to energize your transition.

Are you a career practitioner or HR professional looking for the ideal candidate? Take five easy steps to better understand what skills are changing and who is available.

  1. Paint the picture. Share our career transition survey with your network.
  2. Prepare your workforce. Gather workforce insights and untap the talent pool at
  3. Post available positions. Post your open positions to Canada’s Job Bank or the BOE Report to ensure your job postings are displayed on the PetroLMI job board.
  4. Pique your interest. The Career Explorer Tool compares roles in oil and gas with other industries, so you can review the transferable competency, knowledge and training requirements of those in other industries to find the perfect candidate.
  5. Pursue news you can use. Access recent PetroLMI labour market reports and get in the know with the latest labour market news.

The Petroleum Labour Market Information (PetroLMI) Division of Energy Safety Canada is a leading resource for labour market information and trends in Canada's energy industry. PetroLMI specializes in providing oil and gas labour market data and insights, as well as resources for workforce and career planning. 

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