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Industry involvement key to shaping UKCS Skills Strategy

Oil and gas workers are being asked to play their role in the development of a new UK Skills Strategy by completing an online survey.

Not-for-profit skills body OPITO is leading the initiative and the research is being carried out by Robert Gordon University’s (RGU)’s Oil and Gas Institute.

The data collected from individual workers anonymously will help to create ‘skills demand maps’ and will feed into a blueprint for skills diversification and digital transformation.

The research will take into account the likely impact of the energy transition, the changing shape of the UKCS, the increased focus on internationalisation and the possible impact of technology and innovation. This study follows on from the UKCS Workforce Dynamicsreview, which was published in May this year.

The review found that if the sector achieves ambitions around the energy transition and oil and gas production and exports, around 40,000 people will need to be recruited into the sector over the next 20 years and 10,000 of those will be in roles that don’t currently exist.

As part of the UKCS Skills Strategy development, RGU and OPITO are looking for input via an online skills survey from a wide range of industry professionals to assess the changing skills demand between now and 2025.

John McDonald, CEO of OPITO said: “We want to build as accurate a picture as possible for the Skills Strategy which will be launched to industry next year, so we are urging anyone working within the industry to take ten minutes to complete the survey. The information collated will determine how roles are changing and help us to ensure the appropriate upskilling, training and education opportunities are available.”

Paul de Leeuw, Director of RGU’s Oil and Gas Institute, added: “Technology, innovation and the transition to a lower carbon future will re-shape the oil and gas industry over the next few decades. Against this backdrop, we will need an increasingly adaptable, flexible and technology-enabled workforce, with new high-tech skills becoming part of day-to-day life in the energy sector.

“Building on the findings of the Workforce Dynamics Review, the need was identified to shape a Skills Strategy to support the delivery of Vision 2035 and to support the wider skills diversification requirements identified in the report. Integral to the successful development of the UK oil and gas Skills Strategy is our engagement with and feedback from the industry.”

The online skills survey is now closed.