High turnover in upstream C-suite

Alexander Group survey finds nearly one in three upstream CEOs moved on in past two years.

Highlights released from the Alexander Group’s national survey of oil and gas executives show high turnover in the last two years, a trend that is expected to continue. The survey, which covered US-based executives, found that over 90% of companies surveyed have ‘transitioned’ senior officers in the past two years.

Such transition breaks down as follows—resignation (36.5%), retirement (24.3%), termination (17.4%), promotion (13.9%), lateral moves within the company (4.3%) and demotion ( 3.5%). Two thirds of the transitioners’ replacements came from within the company.

Alexander Group MD John Lamar commented, ‘The energy industry is facing an imminent shortage of executive talent as well as a lack of qualified employees. In our survey we found the CEO role experienced the highest turnover (28.9%), followed by COOs and divisional or regional heads. Counsel and public affairs roles saw the least turnover (1.7% each).’

While most C-suite occupants who quit went to pursue other opportunities, an unexpectedly large number retired. This was put down to an improved economic climate that convinced many who had deferred retirement, because of personal finances or through an obligation to see the company through the downturn, now believe they can safely retire.

The result is that oil and gas industry has seen a 41% growth in available positions from July 2012 to July 2013 and the general feeling is that this situation will persist for the next two years, with particular hiring needs in the finance and operations functional areas. More from the Alexander Group.

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