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Stephen Smith

Senior Drilling Engineer


Well Management


Perth, Australia


Stephen, what made you pick a career in Energy? During my first year of university, while enrolled in a civil engineering degree, the opportunity arose to switch into petroleum engineering in the second year. After a little bit of research of what the oil and gas industry entailed, it appeared there were many possibilities to experience working abroad, and on projects and with technologies that are very dynamic. I found this quite appealing. Tell us a bit about your career development at AGR I started out as a junior trying to learn the trade of planning and drilling an offshore well, to now having an integral role for delivery of our well projects. Working for the company has provided diverse opportunities, including working on drilling projects in house, on secondment to other Operators locally, and the chance to work overseas while on secondment. I’ve worked in countries including: Morocco, Senegal, Mauritania, and Suriname. This has provided exposure to a wide range of experiences and practices to learn from. Being a part of the AGR team has also always meant working in small project teams, providing exposure to all aspects of a drilling project outside of engineering; including contracts, regulatory and project management. What does AGR do to enable your professional advancement and work-life balance? Having started with the company out of university, AGR was on the front foot with providing further training and development specifically in the field of well engineering. In the first few years I was enrolled in a well engineering competency programme, which I think provided a valuable set of core skills and competencies from early in my career. The AGR family has a strong work-life balance culture. We are given the flexibility to work from home when it may be necessary to fit in with personal demands. So it is evident that we are trusted to manage our own business and get the work done when required, which is a great environment to work in.