Innocent Urio has built a lucrative career in the oil and gas industry. From working with one of the largest oil service company in the world (Schlumberger), he now works downstream (oil marketing company) with Puma Energy Tanzania as Engineering and Maintenance Manager.
His interesting story reflects that anyone can build and grow a career in the oil and gas industry, as long as he or she is willing to work hard and long hours.
In this exclusive chat, Innocent gives insight on his journey in the oil and gas industry: the challenges he faced and some initiatives he takes to ensure that he stays in this dynamic industry.
Hussein Boffu, asked.
1.How did you happen get started in the oil and gas industry?
My journey in the oil and gas industry started in early 2012 just after completing my final-year exams. I was given an offer to work with Schlumberger as Maintenance Engineer after passing series of interviews conducted during a career fair event organised by Schlumberger at College of Engineering and Technology, University of Dar es Salaam, Dar es Salaam.
2.Describe the main challenge you faced in your career?
The main challenge was during my first two years when you spend most of the time on the field, doing onshore and offshore drilling rigs. This is the time when you are supposed to acquire a lot of skills through on-job and in-class trainings and you are required to break out and become a standalone competent engineer. The condition for employment during this time was to pass all trainings, otherwise you will be dismissed.
3.What is your most memorable event in your career?
My most memorable event in my career occurred in 2015 when I was promoted to General Maintenance Engineer (GME) after passing all interviews and successfully delivering my project presentation in Congo Brazzaville, Pointe Noire. I delivered this presentation in front of Regional Management and it was a pass-or-fail event.
4.The long awaited oil and gas market is recovering with new projects being approved. How does that impact your career?
The oil price is recovering already and has started to provide opportunities to many areas around the world. What is required is just for all stakeholders in industry to be ready to grasp these opportunities.
5.What does local content mean to you?
Local content, to me, means the provision of employment for locals and the use of local goods and services through development and participation of local human capital and business firms in the entire value chain of the oil and gas industry.
6.What advice would you offer to young people looking to build a career in the oil and gas sector?
The most important thing is to try to be well-informed. Seek information and know what qualities most oil and gas companies are looking for. Also, it is very important to be connected in professional networks such as LinkedIn.
Ensure you have a well-crafted and updated CV. The professional network profile and the CV should portray your qualities. Some job sites are specific for oil and gas jobs. It is very important to visit these websites regularly.