What is your job title?
I am a Chemical Technical Justification Analyst
What are your main responsibilities?
My main responsibilities are:
- Collating information which oil companies have to provide regarding the use and discharge of chemicals on offshore installations (i.e. oil rigs), and also the replacement of chemicals to reduce the potential impact on the marine environment
- Entering the collated information onto a database
- Using the database to run queries
- Maintaining the database
What skills do you need to be able to do your job?
I need to have:
- Good communication skills in order to speak to people so I can find out extra pieces of information, discuss problems and explain the database to other people
- Good written skills so that people will understand the reports and notes I produce
- A knowledge of computer packages such as Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Access so I can use the database and put information into it
- team working skills are important as I need to work with colleagues to gather the information I need and make sure that the database meets their requirements
- Problem solving is also an important skill, as I've just recently started this job and I am having to figure how out the database was built and what all the information in it means
What qualifications do you need to do your job?
To do my job, I needed three highers (one of which must be English), and also a degree in a science subject or equivalent experience. It is useful to have experience of using standard software packages such as Microsoft office, particularly Excel and Access.
What are the highlights of your job?
Because I'm new to the job, I'm enjoying learning about the oil and gas industry and developing the overview of the industry I gained in my previous post. I'm also enjoying the hands on problem solving aspect of the job using different datasets.
And any low points?
So far there haven't been any low points, but I guess I've just not found them yet.
What advice would you give to someone interested in your line of work?
It is useful to have an appreciation of the range of activities which take place in Scottish waters and not focus solely on the oil and gas industry as there will be interactions between different activities. By having a basic understanding of the range of activities, we can have an appreciation of what is involved if there is a potential conflict of interest.
What interested you about your line of work?
I wanted to learn more about the oil and gas industry and get involved in the assessment of offshore activities.
How long have you worked with Marine Scotland?
I will have been with MS for four years in October.
How did you get started with Marine Scotland?
The week of my graduation from uni I saw a job advert in the paper for a Licensing Officer. The job involved processing licence applications on a daily basis with the occasional site visit and sea trip, and since my other half had another two years to go at uni, I figured that I would be as well getting a job in Aberdeen. As a result, I applied for the job at FRS (as it was then) as it sounded quite interesting, but I didn't hold out much hope of getting it due to the fact that there were so many people graduating and I assumed everyone would be looking at the job section in the paper. I was lucky enough to get an interview and ended up getting the job. As a result, I'm still here four years later (albeit in a different job now) and still learning something new everyday.
What would be your advice to your younger self when making subject, study and career choices?
Don't worry too much about knowing exactly what you want to do as a career, there is plenty of time to decide. By fifth and sixth year it is useful to have an idea of whether or not you are looking to go to on to further study and the types of courses you are interested in. This way you can choose the relevant subjects which meet the course requirements and once you have these qualifications you have the option to go on to further study either immediately or at a later date. Bear in mind that it is not only qualifications that matter, but also the experience you have so it is worth considering taking some time out to gain experience and knowledge that you wouldn't necessarily get in a classroom or lecture theatre.