Figures show that a more diverse workforce will increase oil and gas sector profit, especially if more women work offshore, according to industry experts.
Kellas Midsteam’s Victoria Cameron, Robert Gordon University’s Paul de Leeuw and John McDonald of Opito all agreed yesterday that diversity can only benefit the sector.
The comments were made as part of a discussion on future of the industry during Offshore Europe in Aberdeen.
They claim that despite studies showing “time and time again” that increasing the number of women working offshore will increase profits, “skepticism” still exists.
Ms Cameron, business coordination manager for Kellas Midstream, said: “There is a lot of talk in our industry about inclusion and diversity and I’m not convinced all that talk is translating into action.
“But when you look at it belief drives action, but I think there’s still a bit of skepticism around the business case for diversity.”
“Diversity is not all about gender at all, but it is one indicator.”
Mr McDonald, chief executive of Opito agreed, he said: “There are some beacons of hope, but for the rest of us, it’s not good enough.
“For diversity, gender is paramount, but I want to see diversity of ethnicity and diversity of sexual orientation in our workforce.
“We’re not seeing a lot of companies out there that we can look at and say: we can copy this.”
Ms Cameron claimed that the oil and gas industry does “have a big deficit” in women working offshore but that it is “not the only sector grappling with this problem”.
UK offshore wind, she said, only has a 16% representation of women working in the sector.
She added: “Offshore is not helping our 25% cut between men and women – only 3% of the offshore workforce are women in the UK.
“The focus really needs to be: why are we not getting more women interested in working offshore?”
Paul de Leeuw, director of the Energy Transition Institute at RGU, added: “We really need to look at the roles women do (in the sector) and what’s taking out the disciplines we have and be thoughtful about how we move forward.”