According to a report by Oxford Strategic Consulting the current period of low oil prices could be an opportunity for GCC-based oil and gas companies to invest in and diversify talent, said Trade Arabia.

Many oil and gas companies are cutting back on recruitment spending and reducing overall headcount, the aptly titled Monster Employment Index Report explained.

Nonetheless, the report’s authors were optimistic, saying that such dips in the employment pool have happened before, as in the 1980s, while the specter of nationalization also discourages oil companies from recruiting and training the right people.

“We know this industry-wide challenge as ‘the Big Crew Change’. If the industry as a whole buys into this new round of recruitment cutbacks, we could be looking at a Big Crew Change 2.0 down the road,” the report said.

There were companies that use this period of low oil prices as an opportunity to invest in new talent, as well as developing existing talent and targeting female recruitment, better positioning them to handle any future talent gaps in the industry.

According to Zawya the report also documented a significant decrease in August job postings in the UAE’s oil and gas industry, with similar findings in Qatar and Oman.

Another interesting finding was that only 36% of UAE nationals use the internet for finding jobs, while the vast majority seek recommendations from influential people instead.

Employers, likewise, tend to avoid job recruitment through the Internet, preferring instead to use recruitment fairs (52%) and finding candidates directly (44%).

Oxford Strategic Consulting is an Oxford and GCC based consultancy that specializes in building human capital in both the GCC states and Europe.