Finding qualified job applicants throughout the skilled trades has become increasingly more difficult, and that also holds true for the drilling industry. While there are several factors that have fed into this lack of trained workers, the pinch is felt across the country, especially for many smaller businesses. How can they compete with bigger employers in the race for hard to find qualified workers?
Despite commonly held beliefs, salary alone is not what pulls in applicants or what keeps current employees happy and on the job. Several different surveys point to benefits as the bigger draw when applying for drilling jobs. For decades, employers have encouraged their workers to strive for a work-life balance, although that can be hard to achieve. Most job seekers and employees place the highest level of importance on jobs that offer the flexibility to balance work with other life responsibilities, interests, and family.
Other fringe benefits valued by potential employees include job training, tuition assistance, and a company vehicle. A good benefits package can be the boost that makes a drilling operation a sought-after employer.
An employee’s taxable wages usually contain many fringe benefits, but there are many others that can be deducted by the employer without being taxed. A lot of these fringe benefits are very appealing to potential employees, too. By providing employer tax-deductible extras like health insurance, daycare assistance, dental insurance, and medical expense reimbursement, businesses have the opportunity to offer what job-seekers are really looking for while saving the company’s bottom line.
Some benefits like meals and employee moving expenses have been lost to new tax laws. But in exchange, employers can take a new tax credit for providing paid family and medical leave for their employees.
On top of benefits and pay, make sure you’re providing your drilling team quality, well-kept, newer drilling equipment in the field and for training. This gives them the latest technology base to draw from while increasing your company’s marketability.
The race to attract qualified drilling applicants can seem daunting at times, but benefits provide a win-win situation for employers. By offering desired fringe benefits, drilling companies can engage the best and the brightest drilling candidates while saving money and staying competitive in the industry.