Senior Drilling Engineer
BEng (Hons) Mechanical and Offshore Engineering from the Robert Gordon University
Football, cycling, getting outdoors
Ewan, what does your average day look like?
My average day varies depending on the stage of the given project I am working on. For instance, in the early stages of a project, a great deal of my time may be spent analysing and reviewing performance from previous drilling operations in the area, or on creating high level time and cost estimates.
When the project moves into the operations phase, I can then find myself sitting on a rig in a supervisory role or as part of the onshore team in-country or back in Aberdeen.
During operations the vital day to day task is to provide operational support and ensure all aspects of the drilling programme are executed in the most cost-effective, efficient and safest way.
Tell us a bit about your career development at AGR
I was initially employed as a trainee drilling engineer. This entailed working with well engineering teams onshore in Aberdeen and offshore as a well site engineer, while I learnt the job.
As my skills developed, I was entrusted with my first well, to do the planning for an exploration well in the North Sea. I then moved solely into a rig site position and worked as a Night Drilling Supervisor on various rigs both in the North Sea and overseas.
This lasted for about two years, after which I became part of an onshore operations team, working rotationally as operations engineer in various locations around the world; including North Africa, West Africa and the South Atlantic.
Over the past four years or so, I have spent considerable time planning and executing various wells and projects for a number of clients in Aberdeen. This has also included time spent seconded to an Aberdeen-based operator, as lead engineer for their exploration drilling programme.
What did you do before joining AGR?
Fortunately, AGR have provided job satisfaction, stability and job security for me. Apart from the odd jobs I held to help me fund university and a temporary placement at an Oil Services company during my final year of study; I have been successfully building my entire career at AGR since I graduated from university.
What does AGR do to enable your professional advancement and work-life balance?
I would say I’ve been rather lucky at AGR. Over the years I have held a number of interesting roles and have worked on an impressive number of broad-ranging projects; including onshore planning, offshore supervisory and in-country representation - all of which have aided in my professional advancement.
Additionally, overseas rotational roles have allowed me to visit many countries I probably would have never visited; including Guinea, Equatorial Guinea, Morocco and Tunisia.
A great opportunity has been equal time rotation, which allows personal time to pursue my own interests. As an added bonus, when working in Aberdeen, the office is conveniently located less than a mile from my home. This means I can quickly cycle home, put my feet up, and have a cup of tea in less than 5 minutes - if I need a break!