Rig welders play a central role in the oil industry. Working atop the massive metal platforms to drill, process, and store oil, rig welders are needed for their specialized skills in welding metals.
With many components of this job relying solely on regional proximity to an oil field, finding a rig welder job in today’s market can be a challenge. Although the rig welding job market tends to be less focused on resumes than performance, learning how to stand out in a crowd of applicants is an important first step toward finding the rig welder job you really want.
Featuring a median annual pay of $42,490 per year and a median hourly rate of $20.43, rig welding can supply exciting career prospects. Additionally, the industry is expected to grow by 3% from 2018 to 2028. The biggest question is where to look. This guide will showcase some of the simple ways to find rig welding work quickly and efficiently.
Understanding the Prerequisites
Knowing what to expect from a rig welder position can help you determine whether this particular job is right for you. As education goes, entry-level rig welder jobs can typically be acquired with just a high school diploma and the completion of an apprenticeship. Pipeline certification is helpful but not always mandatory if you can prove enough natural ability.
Physically, rig welding can be quite demanding. As rig welding belongs to the construction field, it falls into the category of jobs that require you to take a physical to apply successfully.
Rig welding tends to be a highly active job that may require you to stand, sit, or lay down in tight and somewhat uncomfortable positions. There can also be a risk element from fire and sparks, so wearing protective gear is a must.
A career in rig welding entails a nontraditional job path for several reasons. The first reason is that resumes tend to be less important than branding your name in a positive light and proving that you have strong and consistent welding skills. The rig welding environment can be intense, and the hours can be long, so the way that you interact with others and present yourself will go a long way toward establishing that you are a helpful and committed employee.
The second reason is that the welding industry tends to be a word-of-mouth industry, where jobs are shared among colleagues and partners. Having a positive attitude and a powerful work ethic are your two best calling cards in this field. As with all word-of-mouth communities, bad news travels fast, and any report of a bad attitude or lackluster welding skills could cost you your next job.
Nearly all rig welding companies will ask applicants to complete and pass a welding test. This is a simple test of basic welding ability where you have the chance to showcase your knowledge. Make sure to bring your own tools and any other equipment that you may need to display your facility for welding in the best possible light.
Contact Job Providers Directly
The easiest way to make quick connections in the rig welding world is to reach out directly to companies that you think you might like to work for. Research the companies that do business in areas you are interested in living or working in. These are generally going to populate around oil fields, so the geographical options may be limited, but the number of companies in a given area will be high.
Do not be shy about asking who you need to contact regarding rig welder positions. People in all fields of work are finding new ways to locate jobs, but there is no replacement for person-to-person contact, especially in a field as insular as welding.
Successfully entering the rig welding industry is all about building relationships. Remember that this is a field of sporadic and often temporary work, as the jobs tend to end when a given field or area has been exhausted of its desirable resources. This means that you will constantly be moving from field to field and job to job. The relationships you form with other welders can have a strong impact on the next rig welding job you get.
Reach Out to Welding Schools
If you are becoming certified in rig welding, ask for the phone numbers of your classmates and professors. You need a solid network of industry professionals to connect with in your search for a rig welder job.
If you are not in school or did not attend certification, make contact with the administration at any local welding school in your area. Ask for their insights into the job field and any leads on rig welding companies that they may be aware of. Often, trade schools that specialize in fields like welding will host job fairs that you can take part in, or you can ask to be placed on internal group email lists that promote jobs in the rig welding industry.
You can even ask to audit a class at a local welding school for a day and make connections among the other welders while you are there. Welding schools generally employ seasoned welders to teach these certification classes, and these teachers represent a wealth of knowledge about the industry, which you can put to good use in your job search.
Social Media Is the New Classifieds
Are you following the professional social media accounts of all the companies you would like to work for yet? You should be. Many companies have taken to posting available work on social media before they even place the jobs on official job boards because response times can be faster with social media’s viral tendencies.
It is wise to conduct some prudent social media cleanup on yourself before you start making connections in the rig welding field with your socials. As rig welding is such a reputation-based field, you want to ensure that your social media platforms demonstrate not just the best side of your personality, but also the unique welding skills that you can offer.
Make sure the majority of your friends on Facebook and connections on LinkedIn include other welders. Use these social media platforms to keep on top of industry changes and to ask about available jobs. Social media also represents the most efficient way to track trends in rig welding and see where the most jobs are popping up at a given moment.
Social media can likewise be the fastest way to find out about the overseas developments in your industry. For example, the large number of rig welding jobs available in the Middle East can often be accessed via the social media accounts of companies working there.
Utilize a Smart Search Portal
Finding a rig welder job that works for you is all about knowing where and how to look. Joblist can help you find rig welder jobs in a multitude of ways. With insightful resources into industry trends, employment hot spots, and specific job listings in thousands of cities across the nation, we provide a host of opportunities to find rig welder work.
The vast database of jobs available on Joblist can be searched by title or location. Just fill out a short questionnaire, and we will tailor your job feed to your unique circumstances, educational background, and job interests. This saves you the time of sorting through hundreds of irrelevant listings. You can also come back to your job list when you’re ready to apply.
As rig welding jobs are ever-shifting, having a specialized sifting tool like Joblist can help you stay alert to upcoming positions and keep your employment path in rig welding smooth and consistent. Searching smart with Joblist means that you can be on the way to finding your next rig welder position today!