Process Operations

Production Technicians operate equipment and systems which process oil or gas. Technicians are responsible for maintaining safe operations and achieving production targets.

Oil and gas (and water) produced from underground or undersea reservoirs flow to the surface through well tubing and pipes. The flow is controlled by different types of valves and is routed to the surface facilities which process these well fluids.

The oil, gas and water are separated into three streams via vessels at different pressures and temperatures. The oil and gas is typically treated to remove any undesirable components of the fluids such as Hydrogen sulphide. The separated and treated fluids are then pumped or compressed so that it can be transported through long pipelines to refineries or further treatment plants – this part of the process is known as exporting.

The process operator or technician’s job is to ensure oil and gas keeps flowing to the required locations at the required specification.

Typical Day/Duties:

  • Starting up and shutting down process equipment such as pumps and compressors as required to keep the process flowing
  • Monitoring and recording the flow, temperatures and pressures of the oil, gas and water readings to ensure they stay within design parameters
  • Report and fix (where possible) problems with process or equipment
  • Prepare process equipment for either breakdown or routine maintenance by shutting down equipment and depressurising or draining the fluids contained in the process equipment, and closing in isolation valves
  • Bring equipment back into service following maintenance
  • Report any safety issues such as dangerous leaks or dangerous activities
  • Ensure that maintenance work teams have the appropriate permit-to-work (PTW) documents, and periodically monitor the maintenance activities to ensure they are working to safety instructions written on the PTW 
  • Take instructions from the Control Room Operator or Shift Supervisor
  • They will also be trained to respond to different types of process emergencies. 

How this role fits in with the rest of the industry:

This role is vital to the safe and effective delivery of production in the Oil and Gas Industry. This role can be based at an onshore based oil and gas processing facility or an offshore production facility.

Career Development:

Lead Production Technician, Production Supervisor, Offshore Installation Manager (OIM) or a Plant Manager.
There might also be opportunities to become a Coach or Technical Trainer.