Nigeria’s energy sector is vast, with many job vacancies across the renewable energy and hydrocarbon (oil and gas) sectors.
People working in the sector know that even in the face of abysmal financial performance, there will always be positions to fill as work must go on.
Knowing this, Nairametrics spoke with some professionals working in the sector to share tips on how others can land their dream jobs.
Daniel F, a staff of an international oil company (IOC), told Nairametrics that the first quarter of a new year is always a great time to hunt for jobs in the energy sector. He advised anyone interested in getting a job to send out cold emails and share their resumes on platforms of desirable companies before the start of the new year. He stated:
“When I wanted to get a job at this company, I sent out my resume to various companies a few days before Christmas. At the time, I didn’t know what to expect. I had heard a lot about the industry and many people tried to discourage me saying I had to have a godfather or godmother to land a job but I got lucky.”
Daniel, however, acknowledged that it can be difficult getting a job these days, considering that the available vacancies are always smaller than those interested in getting hired. That notwithstanding, it helps to be visible and be a part of the industry, so, it becomes easier to get a job.
How to be visible: Etulan Adu, an oil and gas analyst, advised Nigerians interested in getting jobs in the energy sector to use their time online wisely.
He said that it pays to maintain an energy-related profile online. This will attract like minds to your profile and if you are consistent, you might start getting offers from multiple quarters.
It pays to show that you are valuable in your chosen field. It also pays to drive discussions and attend webinars or in-person events where you can ask questions and share what you know about topics discussed.
All of these will help you build a public profile, which is important if you are applying for or plan to apply for jobs in the energy industry.
Although many qualified Nigerians are searching for jobs in the country, experts have said that the Nigerian factor has prevented some people from getting energy-related jobs in the country.
The Nigerian factor: A staff of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited who spoke anonymously, told Nairametrics that although she is qualified for her job, she had to wait for a long time before she eventually got the job.
According to her, many Nigerians have lost faith in government-affiliated ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) like the NNPC because the average Nigerian with no links is hardly able to work there. She declined to comment on how she got the job, but she did say that the NNPC and other top-notch MDAs are not always willing to openly advertise for positions for reasons best known to them.
The last recruitment exercise carried out by the NNPC was in March 2019. The NNPC conducted a recruitment exercise for graduate trainees and experienced hires under the leadership of the late Maikanti Baru. However, recruitment for experienced hires could not be concluded.
The private sector operates differently: According to Segunfunmi, who works in a private energy firm, recruitment exercises in the private sector are different from the public sector. The whole process for hiring and evaluation is not shrouded in secrecy. This means that people are hired based on their qualifications and capabilities, not because of who they know. If you qualify, you will get hired.
Segunfunmi further emphasizes what Daniel said earlier, that it is best to send out job applications during the end of the year, to as many privately operated firms, so that feedback can be received by Q1/2023.
For the record: It is instructive to know that there are various departments in energy companies and jobs therein do not have to be only Engineering related.
There are departments for business development/sales, human resources/human capital development, communications, research and development, customer service, administration and operations, accounting and finance as well as several others. It is important to understand that these departments will depend on the size and capacity of the company.