John McDonald

Opinion

Opinion: Slashing apprentices can be a false economy

At a time where oil and gas companies across the globe are being affected by the commodity price downturn, many have developed and implemented contingency plans which have seen the selling off of low-profit subsidiary companies, enforced wage cuts, the loss of experienced personnel, a reduction in marketing budgets, and even the cutting of apprenticeship and graduate programmes. It’s a bit of an understatement to say that there’s a huge cloud over the whole industry right now as chief executives worry about keeping their businesses afloat but it’s that last example, the loss of the next generation of oil and gas workers that we need to put higher up the industry’s priority list if we are to ensure the sector has a sustainable future. In order to secure the future of the North Sea oil and gas industry, we need to continue empowering and encouraging a steady pipeline of talent to come through even in challenging times. Past experience has shown us that ignoring this can lead to bigger and more costly issues in the long term.