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Workers sought as oil activity resurges in Saskatchewan
Published Thursday, June 15, 2017 6:22PM CST
Just three years ago, job vacancies in Saskatchewan's oil industry didn't stay open for long. But not anymore.
“Before, it was even unsolicited. Now you put out (job) ads here, there, everywhere and it doesn't seem to matter,” said Jonathan Kmita, owner of John Kmita Ltd.
Southeastern Saskatchewan is the heart of the province's oil and gas industry - and the city of Weyburn has felt the effects of the boom-and-bust industry since prices dropped in 2014.
Kmita says now that the price of oil has stabilized, activity is picking up. But finding enough workers is a challenge.
“Trying to attract new people into the industry seems to be hard right now,” said Kmita. “The money isn't what it was a few years ago, so that's a bit of a deterrent.”
With many who were in the industry hesitant to come back.
“They've found steady work. It's not the same money that they were making potentially from this industry, but it's reliable, it's steady,” said Darcy McCormick, with construction, pipelining and welding company Jerry Mainil Ltd.
McCormick said right now, every penny counts because it goes back to recruiting workers and competing with other companies to attract employees.
“There was a lot of spillage prior to 2014, where you could afford this and that,” said Dennis Mainil, with Jerry Mainil Ltd.
“Now, everything is tight. Margins are tight. You can't afford any slipups.”
However, the Weyburn Chamber of Commerce is confident that the industry will bounce back.
“Just maintain a steady course,” said Twila Walkeden, executive director of the Weyburn Chamber of Commerce.
“Try to maybe get back the folks that were working for them previously and to try to let them understand that, maybe it’s not steady work yet, but the industry is poised to definitely rebound.”