Comprising some 3.8% of the global economy, with revenues of some $3.3 trillion in 2019, the oil and gas drilling industry affects the life of every person on the planet. Yet, until recently, there was no objective measure of the knowledge, skills and competency levels of the operational geoscientists who play a key role in the industry’s activities.


Now, thanks to collaboration between eCom Scotland, the digital learning and assessment specialist, and Operations Geoscience International Competency Assessment (OGICA), a unique online assessment tool – powered by eCom’s flexible online assessment system, eNetAssess – has been developed to meet this need. As part of the tool’s rollout, on 28th April, OGICA’s Christine Telford will introduce its capabilities to members of The Canadian Society of Petroleum Geologists (CSPG).


Realising that operational geoscientists had no objective assessment to measure expertise or competency in that industry, OGICA asked eCom to help to create a tool that would benchmark an individual’s skills and provide a useful visual representation of the output.


Wendy Edie, eCom’s Managing Director, commented, “Given the international nature of the oil and gas sector and the 24-hour nature of their work, OGICA needed a digital solution that candidates could access at any time, from any location.


“The tool eCom has developed is helping to demonstrably increase the standard of professionalism in these roles. While OGICA has supplied the industry-focused expertise in developing the tool’s content, this is backed by eCom’s many years’ of experience in developing eAssessment systems. We’re therefore a ‘trusted advisor’ to OGICA, a role which acknowledges eCom as a recognised ‘authority’ in digital learning and assessment – at least in an industry that comprises 3.8% of the global economy’s output.


“Operational geoscientists can now assess themselves against the skills framework – via a randomised series of multiple-choice questions,” she continued. “As well as enabling users to progress to competency management systems relevant to their company or organisation, the tool also identifies any knowledge and skills gaps they may have – to help with their continuing professional development (CPD) and on-going lifelong learning.”


In addition to OGICA engaging with several major international operators who are currently exploring how the framework can support their activities, as well as presenting to The Canadian Society of Petroleum Geologists (CSPG), one major oil and gas company is now using the framework, in-house, in the Middle East.


“The largest global producers of oil are the United States, Russia and Saudi Arabia. These three countries produced some 33m barrels of oil per day in 2019 – which is some 54% of total world production,” Wendy explained. “We’re confident of developing the market for this tool, particularly among the world’s top oil and gas producers because it provides an objective assessment of these key professionals’ knowledge and skills.”


According to market research by IBISWorld, a leading business intelligence firm, the total revenues for the oil and gas drilling sector came to approximately $3.3 trillion in 2019. This sector comprises companies that explore for, develop and operate oil and gas fields. It is also sometimes referred to as the oil and gas exploration and production industry, or simply E&P. With 2019 global GDP estimated to be $86 trillion, the oil and gas drilling sector alone makes up around 3.8% of the global economy. The industry includes companies that specialise in crude petroleum production, the mining and extraction of oil from shale or sands and the recovery of hydrocarbon liquids.


eCom ( creates innovative learning solutions – aimed at increasing learning engagement and driving productivity – to help organisations achieve their goals. With offices in Dunfermline, Scotland, and Athens, Georgia, in the USA, but with customers from around the world, eCom focuses on the delivery, tracking and reporting of workforce learning and development through innovative technologies. Its products and services address a range of workforce management, development and training challenges, including eLearning, online assessment, blended learning, competency management and accreditation.