Offshore oil rigs can cost hundreds of millions to construct. Each oil rig creates hundreds of jobs that are necessary to keep them running 24/7.

With the increased demand for oil, there is a new race to find new offshore oil fields and extract the precious crude oil to the surface. This growth means there is an extremely high demand for oil workers. By 2011 there is expected to be a 30% increase in the number of offshore oil field workers.

There is an abundance of work to be done. In the North Sea for an example there is estimated to be another 40 to 60 billion more barrels of oil in around 300 undiscovered oil fields that have yet to be drilled. Then there's the Gulf of Mexico, oil fields off South America and Africa, and in Asian waters. New deepwater drilling technology is making it possible to tap into oil fields that were previously untouchable.

Offshore oil rigs are an interesting place to work and there are so many types of deep water drilling platforms to work on. You could find yourself on a fixed platform in the Gulf of Mexico, a compliant tower in the middle of the North Sea, a tension leg platform off the coast of Newfoundland, a jackup rig in Brazil, a drillship near Angola, or a semi-submersible in South East Asia.

Some offshore oil rig jobs are high paying and some are not, yet all come with a high risk of physical injury.

Here is a list of jobs and the common job heirarchy of offshore oil rig workers:
Roustabout - responsible for cleaning, painting, and helping out with anything and everything at all times.

Roughneck - typical entry-level position where you must be a jack-of-all-trades.
Motorman - the all around mechanic who makes sure everything on the oilrig functions properly.
Derrickhand makes sure the drill is functioning and guiding pipe 80 feet above the platform.
Driller - manager of a small crew, you'll operate the drills that extract the precious natural resources.
Toolpusher - oilrig supervisor who is responsible for all oilrig operations, costs, and safety.
Company Man - oil company representative who helps with training, regulations, or other problems that arise.
Commercial Deepwater Diver - diver takes care of all of the maintenance, repairs, cleaning, exploration, and general operations of a drilling platform that are underwater.
Furthermore, employers in the offshore oil and gas industry continually recruit for subsea and petroleum engineers, geoscientists, and other positions that require a high degree of training and education.

Worldwide the oil industry faces an ongoing shortage of qualified workers. When you work in the oil industry you will be working long hard hours in physically demanding conditions, extreme weather, and sometime hazardous situations. Rigs run 24/7. It's a fast paced industry. The jobs are hard but the salary and benefits will outweigh the disadvantages.

If you're ready for a life of adventure on an offshore drilling platform, or in support of the industry, then we hope you will find our directory an invaluable resource.

Read more of our articles to help you learn all about deep sea oil drilling, where to look for jobs, what companies are hiring, what jobs you are qualified for, the typical offshore oil worker salaries, and much more.