Research findings from the recent Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce survey into the oil and gas industry indicate that operators are seeking to boost workforce numbers across the board.
Shortages in key areas are reaching crisis point; on top of growing permanent staff members, some 40% of firms surveyed indicated that they have increased their demand for contractor and freelance personnel.
Indeed, to simply keep pace with demand, the industry may need upwards of 10,000 additional workers over the next five years alone. There is now a foot race as agencies strive to take up the slack and fill as many vacancies as possible. Along with the rush to boost staffing levels, pay hikes in the region of 15% per year are expected on average for oil and gas workers.
For contractors and agencies to make the most of favourable market conditions, expert advice is key. A firm specialising in payroll and tax advice, shared their views on issues likely to crop up as the oil and gas industries ramp up recruitment. Their Director commented: “With staff shortages across the sector, agencies could find themselves up against the lure of permanent contracts, something that is becoming more common as firms seek to tie-in contractors long-term.”
He continued “Agencies must ready themselves to build better relationships with their contractors, hammering home the message that contracting remains more lucrative than permanent work. What better way to solidify partnerships than by best safe-guarding the economic and legal interests of their contractors?
Additionally, those contractors with Limited Company status need to be aware of the benefits of using umbrella company services. As well as helping the contractor become fully tax compliant, umbrella companies offer experienced professional management of all accounts and legal issues, easing the burden contractors often encounter when they form their own Limited Companies.