Is natural gas distribution a good career path? Being the middleman between the gas company and the customer has its perks.
What will I learn?
Natural gas is a monopoly in most areas, which gives the gas company a lot of power. They can charge what they want, and the customer is captive.
Is Natural Gas Distribution A Good Career Path – Complete Guide
But being a monopoly means they have to provide good customer service or lose their customers.
So a career in natural gas distribution can be a good choice if you like working with people and providing good customer service.
The gas company will train you on the job, so you don’t need specific qualifications.
There are some prime examples of jobs in the natural gas industry:
1. Gas Engineer:
What does a gas engineer do? A gas engineer’s job is to ensure a property’s gas supply is safe and efficient.
A gas engineer is not different from other engineers. They have to be able to work with complex systems and have problem-solving skills.
A gas engineer’s day-to-day tasks might include:
1. Visiting properties to carry out gas safety checks. They have to ensure the appliances are safe to use and that there are no gas leaks.
If there are any problems, they will either fix them or advise the customer on what to do.
Usually, the gas engineer will work on a team of engineers, so they must communicate well with others.
2. Engineering gas distribution systems. This involves designing, building, and maintaining gas networks. Many gas engineers work on projects to upgrade the gas network.
Networks of gas pipelines are getting old and need projects that can take years to complete.
3. Working on gas projects. Gas engineers often work on huge projects, such as building a gas pipeline or working on an oil rig.
Their job is to make sure the project runs smoothly and safely.
4. Providing gas safety training. Gas engineers often have to provide training to other members of staff. Such as teaching them how to use gas safety equipment.
Their engineering study and experience help them in this. They apply principles and practices of engineering to solve problems in the field.
A gas engineer’s average yearly salary is $87,055 per Payscale study.
2. Distribution Technician:
A distribution technician’s job is maintaining and repair the gas distribution system. This includes the pipes and meters.
The distribution technician has to be able to work with complex systems. They have problem-solving skills.
Technicians do not need to be certified. But they have to be familiar with the basic standards of gas provision.
A distribution technician’s day-to-day tasks might include:
1. Carrying out repairs. If an appliance breaks down, the gas engineer will fix it.
They will assess the problem and try to fix it on the spot. They will advise the customer on what to do if they can’t.
2. Installing new gas appliances. This might include cookers, fires, and boilers. They are not mechanics or electricians, though.
Their job is to ensure the gas appliances are working correctly. And in case of any problems, they know how to fix them.
3. Providing customer service. The distribution technician is the face of the gas company. They have to provide good customer service.
This means being polite and helpful. And in case of any problems, they have to find a solution.
The distribution technician’s average hourly salary is $13.69 per the Payscale study.
3 Meter Reader:
A meter reader’s job is to read gas meters. They have to be physically fit as they have to walk a lot. And sometimes they have to climb stairs.
Meter readers do not need any qualifications. But they have to be familiar with the basic standards of gas provision.
Basic standards of gas provision include:
1. Health and safety. The meter reader has to be aware of the risks of working with gas. They have to know how to stay safe.
If they see anything that is not safe, they have to report it to their supervisor.
2. No Illegal Connections. The meter reader has to make sure that there are no illegal connections.
People sometimes try to connect their gas appliances to the mains without permission.
If the meter reader sees this, they must report it to their supervisor.
3. Meter Reading. The meter reader has to be able to read the gas meter. This is not always easy as some meters are old and difficult to read.
The meter reader has to be accurate. If they make a mistake, it could cost the company money.
4. Security. The meter reader has to be aware of security risks. They have to make sure no one is stealing gas.
If they see anything suspicious, they have to report it.
The meter reader’s average hourly salary is $15.04 per Payscale study.
4. Service Representative:
Service reps are the ones behind phone calls and computer screens. They assist customers with their service-related questions or concerns.
They work in the customer service department of a company. And they are often the first point of contact for customers.
The service representative’s job is to provide good customer service. They have to try to answer any question the customer has.
If they can’t answer the question, they have to find someone who can.
Some common questions they might get are:
1. How to use the gas service?
2. How to make a payment?
3. We want to report a problem.
4. How long will it take to fix the problem?
5. When will the gas be back on?
The service representative’s average hourly salary is $15.02 per Payscale study.
An installer’s job is to install gas appliances. They are not mechanics or electricians, though.
They simply make sure that the gas appliances are fitted and working correctly.
Some of the steps they might have to do are:
1. Installing new appliance.
2. Checking that the appliances are working correctly.
3. Giving the customer a demonstration of how to use the appliance.
4. Answering any questions the customer has.
The installer’s average hourly salary is $19.26 per the Payscale study.
A supervisor is responsible for a team of gas distribution technicians. They have to make sure that the team is working efficiently.
And that they are complying with all the safety regulations. The supervisor’s job is to:
1. Plan the work. The supervisor has to plan the work to do. They have to make sure that the team has enough work to do.
And that the work is evenly distributed.
2. Schedule the work. The supervisor must ensure that the team is working the proper hours. They must ensure that the team has enough time to do the job.
And that they are not working too much overtime.
3. Manage the team. The supervisor has to make sure that the team is working well together. They have to manage any conflicts between team members.
And they have to make sure that the team is meeting its targets.
4. Report any problems. The supervisor has to report any issues to the manager.
The supervisor’s average yearly salary is $59,113, per the Payscale study.
All these are public-facing roles and the first line of contact for customers.
So is natural gas distribution a good career path? The job outlook for natural gas distribution is positive.
Is Natural Gas Distribution A Public Sector?
Yes, natural gas distribution is a public sector. The government is investing in infrastructure, which will create jobs.
The government is also deregulating natural gas industry, which will create more jobs.
Regarding job security, natural gas distribution is a good career choice.
Natural gas is a commodity, and people will always need it. There will always be a demand for natural gas.
And this means that jobs in the industry are secure. Although the industry is growing slowly, it is still growing.
Future Of Natural Gas Distribution – Pros
The future of natural gas distribution looks bright. The industry will grow in the future.
Technological advances are making it easier to extract and transport natural gas. This is making the industry more efficient.
Here are some examples:
1. New Method Of Production:
For instance, horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing have increased production.
As a result, the price of natural gas has fallen, making it more affordable. This will increase demand of natural gas.
With new production methods, the natural gas industry is becoming more efficient.
2. Improved Distribution Methods:
Pipelines, tankers, and trucks can now transport natural gas. This has made it easier to distribute natural gas.
It has also made it possible to transport natural gas to more remote areas. This will increase demand.
And with lower prices, more people will use natural gas.
3. New Uses For Natural Gas:
Natural gas is now used in more industries. For instance, it is being used to manufacture fertilizers and chemicals.
It is also used to generate electricity. So without a doubt, the need for natural gas is increasing.
Likewise, the use of natural gas will increase. This is because it is a cleaner fuel than coal and oil.
It produces fewer greenhouse gases, making it more environmentally friendly.
4. Deregulation Of The Natural Gas Industry:
The government is deregulating the natural gas industry. This will create more jobs.
It will also make it easier for new companies to enter the market. This will increase competition and lower prices.
However, in most cases, the natural gas industry is monopolizing. In other words, a single company controls the market.
Building the infrastructure needed to transport and distribute natural gas is costly.
This includes pipelines, storage facilities, and distribution networks. So, the entry of new companies is minimal.
Cons Of Natural Gas Distribution
There are many benefits of working in the natural gas industry. However, there are also some drawbacks.
1. Health Risks:
Working in the natural gas industry can be dangerous. There are many health risks associated with it.
For instance, natural gas is flammable. So, there is a risk of explosions and fires.
There is also a risk of exposure to harmful gases. This can lead to health problems such as respiratory problems and cancer.
2. Low Pay:
Another downside of working in the natural gas industry is that the pay is not very high.
This is because the industry is not very profitable. So, companies are not able to pay their employees high salaries.
Even if you have a lot of experience, you will not be able to earn a lot of money.
3. Slow Growth:
The natural gas industry is growing slowly. So, there is not a lot of opportunity for advancement.
Even if you are good at your job, you may not be able to get promoted.
Even when there are vacancies, they are often filled by people from outside the company.
This is because it is difficult to find qualified candidates within the company.
4. Long Hours:
Working in the natural gas industry can be very demanding. You may have to work long hours.
This is because the demand for natural gas is always high. So, you may have to work overtime to meet the demand.
Especially for workers and engineers, working excessive hours is very common.
5. Job Insecurity:
The natural gas industry is not very stable. So, there is a risk of job insecurity. Even if you have a job, there is no guarantee that you will keep it.
The industry is constantly changing. So, companies may downsize or merge with other companies.
Or, with deregulation of the industry, new companies may enter the market. And they will compete with existing ones.
All this can lead to job losses. And when jobs get lost in the natural gas industry, finding another job is often very difficult.
Can You Get A Job In Natural Gas Distribution Without A College Degree?
Yes, you can get a job in natural gas distribution without a college degree. Most jobs in the industry do not require a college degree.
You can get a job as a:
– Customer service representative
– Meter reader
Jobs that require a college degree are usually management positions.
To get a job in management, you will need a bachelor’s degree in business or a related field.
You can also get a job with an associate’s degree in engineering.
Alternatives To Natural Gas Distribution
You can find many other career options in the energy industry.
Some of these include:
1. Oil & Gas:
You can find many jobs in the oil and gas industry. This includes jobs in exploration, production, refining, and marketing.
Oil & gas is a very profitable industry. So, you can earn a good salary. The dynamics are changing in the industry. So, there is a lot of opportunity for growth.
The industry is also very demanding. So, you may have to work long hours. But, the pay is good.
You can also find many jobs in the electricity industry. This includes jobs in a generation, transmission, and distribution.
With new technologies, the electricity industry is changing rapidly. So, there are many growth opportunities.
Many jobs in the electricity industry require a college degree. But, diplomas and certification programs can also help you get a job.
3. Renewable Energy:
The renewable energy industry is multiplying. Why? Because renewable energy is a clean and sustainable source of energy.
And with climate change, there is an increasing demand for renewable energy. Jobs in the renewable energy industry include solar, wind, and hydropower jobs.
Many of these jobs require specialized training. But, there are also many entry-level jobs.
The renewable energy industry is up-and-coming. So, it is a good career option.
The manufacturing industry is another option. The manufacturing industry makes products that we use in our daily lives.
Jobs in the manufacturing industry include production, quality control, and maintenance.
You will need some training to get a job in the manufacturing industry. Businesses in the manufacturing industry are always looking for qualified candidates.
Jobs in the construction industry include project management, engineering, and construction careers.
Construction includes both commercial and residential construction. The construction industry is multiplying.
New technologies and new products are being used. Climate change is also affecting the construction industry.
Due to these changes, there are many opportunities for growth in the industry.
There are many career options in the energy industry. But, natural gas distribution is a good option.
Although the industry is changing, there are still many opportunities. And you can get a job without a college degree.
The industry is a monopoly, though. So the growth potential is limited. But, it is a good career option. You can earn a good salary and have job security.
Last Updated on 7 months by Aleena
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