Skills Needed in the Energy Industry

The Energy industry is the totality of all the industries involved in the production and sale of energy, including fuel extraction, manufacturing, refining and distribution. The Energy industry comprises:

  • The Petroleum industry, including oil companies, petroleum refiners, fuel transport and end-user sales at fuelling stations.

  • The Gas Industry, including natural gas extraction, and coal gas manufacture, as well as distribution and sales.

  • The Electrical Power industry, including electricity generation, electric power distribution and sales.

  • The coal industry.

  • The Nuclear Power industry

  • The Renewable Energy industry, comprising alternative Energy and sustainable Energy companies, including those involved in hydroelectric power, wind power, and solar power generation, and the manufacture, distribution, and sale of alternative fuels

There is obviously a great deal to love about a career in energy, a diverse field that encompasses coal, oil, gas, renewables, and more. There are clear career paths to grow with, challenging work, impressive remuneration packages, and a wealth of jobs to choose from. Of course, it’s helpful to know which skills energy sector employers look for before trying to switch.

Skills for Working in Energy

1. Basic Skills

According to Rand, which crunched occupational employment statistics (OES) data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the most in-demand skills within the energy sector are classified as “basic skills.” The top five for the sector include active listening, critical thinking, speaking, reading comprehension, and monitoring. In other words, people from almost every background will possess the five most critical skills companies in the energy sector seek.

2. STEM Knowledge

Studies surrounding science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) are highly prized within the industry, particularly for those in tech-related roles. However, it’s important to remember that the field relies on countless professions, so although a STEM background is beneficial for a multitude of roles, not having one isn’t a deal-breaker.

3. Cross-Functionality

While most careers expect job candidates to be able to perform a multitude of tasks, this ranks quite high for those in energy, particularly as it pertains to possessing technical skills.

4. Social Awareness

Not surprisingly, top-performing companies within the industry are always striving to meet the needs of people while being mindful of environmental impact. They intentionally seek out employees who not only have an interest and deep understanding of social responsibility but are conscious of these aspects throughout the course of their work.

5. Project Management

Performance and profitability are paramount, but difficult to attain in an industry with higher levels of risk and scarce resources. Those with strong backgrounds in project management, particularly with achievements in challenging situations, will often move to the front of the line when interviewing.

6. Collaboration

One of the reasons employers prize communication skills is the frequency with which collaboration is leveraged in the energy sector. Those who are adept communicators and who can relate information to both technical and non-technical teams have a leg up when it comes to working collaboratively. Of course, being able to work well in a team involves more than this; a unique mindset which values what each person brings to the table, conflict resolution skills, and enthusiasm are all beneficial.

There is a Fit for Every Skill Set in Energy

While these are six of the most in-demand skills in the energy sector today, they are not an exhaustive list. The energy industry needs administrative employees, marketers, business operations specialists, legal experts, sales professionals, truck drivers, and more. With countless opportunities available, the challenge is not how to break into an energy career but choosing the one that’s the best fit for your skills.

Head to to find your new career today.

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