Name: Nadya Shnuchkina

Job Title: Production Engineer

Years of Experience: 10 Yrs+

Company: ConocoPhillips

What do you do?

I’m a Production Engineer (PE). My job entails looking after the overall oil and gas production in the Central North Sea. I work with many different disciplines and go offshore on regular basis to start up new wells, look after well services campaigns. I am also responsible to integrity of our wells and making sure that oil and gas are production is optimised and conducted in the safe and economical manner.

Why Pursue The Career?

This job gives me opportunity to meet new people, travel the world and I love the buzz around day-to-day activities that I have to participate in. I enjoy the challenge of career opportunities ahead of me and truly collaborative environment in my work place.

What is your title?

Production Engineering is an branch of Petroleum Engineering that specialises in oil and gas production, well integrity, production optimisation, This role assumes integration with lots of different oil and gas disciplines such as drilling, completions, reservoir engineering etc.

What type of Skills is someone required to have to work in your position?

(i)Excellent maths and science application skills (ii)Good communication (iii)Good time management and prioritization (iv)Technical computer application use proficiency (v) Working effectively and efficiently when under pressure.

What do you do on a typical day?

Working on various projects that involve production of oil and gas, looking after the integrity of the wells. I ensure that the production is optimised depending on platform system constraints. I am also working on Exploration and Production (E&P) asset tasks as part of the multi-disciplinary team.

What type of Person is best suited to your job?

Person who is willing to achieve his/her goals, who is enjoying working with other people and who love the dynamic changing working environment. You can develop all necessary soft skills as you progress your career, but you need to be willing to put yourself out there and be willing to collaborate and believe in yourself that you can do it.

Do you have any advice for those looking to start a career in your job?

I enjoy my job because it gives me greatest reward of day-to-day satisfaction. I love seeing results and therefore I cannot recommend this job and this industry in general enough. Get yourself a good degree in science, work on your confidence and go apply for jobs that are out there. You will have a great career and lots of paths to choose from. You will develop professionally and as a human being, but you have to work hard to get yourself to a good place and gain respect from your peers and managers. Good work ethics will help you gain your credibility, remember, attitude is everything.

What is the highlight of your career so far?

I love going offshore and getting things done that I very dynamic and interesting, like starting up new wells or even fields. Being part of exciting new projects that involve drilling new wells can be very exciting and more importantly rewarding. I get to meet a lot of interesting people and develop great long lasting friendship with people. There is nothing more rewarding for me than being appreciated by the guys offshore.

What is the typical entry route into your role?

Graduate Entry Route – University Bachelors, Masters/Post Grad and PhD Deg. entry qualification.
Cross-Trained Engineering Entry Route – Other technical Engineering professionals (Chemical, Electrical and Mechanical) taking specialized trainings tailored to working as and pursuing Production Engineering industrial path.

What subjects would you recommend students study at school for your career?

Maths, Physics, Chemistry and Computer science subjects.

What is good about working in the Energy sector?

It is a very dynamic environment and this industry is in high demand for young people who will take over from the more experienced ones. You will learn a lot, you will feel that you are doing something that actually matters, something that every person on this planet needs. You will have opportunity to get great training, meet lots of people from different countries and also you will travel a lot.

What does the future hold for person in your career?

The future of a Production Engineer ties pretty much to a lot of factors which most important are; continuous dependency/demand for fossil fuel energy (conventionals/un-conventionals), prices of crude, new petroleum fields discoveries, advancement of technology helping to step up exploration prospecting and production to deeper offshore and arctic regions of the world.

Do you get to travel globally in your role? If yes, tell us about where you have been on are going.

My current role is primarily tied to UK – North Sea fields. However,in the past I worked in Egypt, Russia, Australia and Kazakhstan. I have had great experiences, worked on different projects and met great people with whom I am still friends.

Any last advice for anyone wanting to pursue your career?

Just got for it and be patient. Do your studies, find a job and watch a great career unfold itself! As a production engineer you will in the middle of the most exciting things and will meet great people.