Interested in developing your career and becoming an Oil and Gas Engineering Contractor, but not sure how financially lucrative your new career path might be? It is important to be aware of the range of daily take home rates that may be available at your level, so that you can determine whether the life of a contractor is the right one for you.
The amount you can earn as an oil and gas engineer will vary wildly based on your level of experience and your skillset. If you work in a highly sought after and niche industry, with several years of experience, then you will earn considerably more than if you are freshly qualified engineer. It is difficult to put an exact figure on your potential earnings, but research suggests that your earning potential can vary from as little as £300 per day to as much as £2,000 per day, for specialist experts. On average, an experienced oil and gas engineer can expect to earn around £1,000 per day, although it is important to remember that you will have to deduct your own tax payments and national insurance contributions from this figure, as well as any pension, holiday pay and sick pay contingency. It is also important to remember that you cannot expect to earn the same high figure if you are just starting out in the industry, compared to if you have decades of experience.
The good news though, is that average project values for contractors have increased considerably in recent years, meaning that there is no better time to take the plunge and begin your life as a contracting oil and gas engineer than right now.
Determining Your Value
When deciding which contracts are best suited to your skillset and which rates of pay are most relevant to you, it is important to determine your value. What unique skills can you bring to a company? How can you enrich their business? What are those skills worth? Asking yourself these questions and determining your value will help you significantly when you begin negotiating your contract rate, with your client. Whilst this process can seem uncomfortable at first, it is the best way to ensure you are being paid the highest available rate. When negotiating with a potential client you need to both understand and discuss:
- The level of experience you have and how you can use this experience to their benefit
- The demand for your specific skillset within their field
- Your interest in the role and the success of any similar projects you have already completed.
Negotiating your rate of pay can be difficult, particularly if you are new to contracting. You may be concerned about losing the role or alienating your potential client. However if you don’t negotiate your rate, then you could end up working for much less than you are worth and more importantly, than for a much lower rate than your peers within the same organisation. It is important to remember that there is no harm in asking for a higher daily rate – the worse that can happen is that you are told no!