Back in the days when I was still waiting for my first assignment with my current company, I was so anxious about what kind of job I would have to do (well, I know what the position was but I still did not know the job description) that I browsed trough the internet looking for the slightest clue of what REP in Transocean do.
Sadly, I could not find a really straightforward answer to my questions. Not only the information regarding Transocean on the web are scarce, let alone info about REPs, but also if I so happened to stumble upon a blog that discussed the matter, it was only a brief introduction of life on the rig.
I promised myself then that I would make a detailed blog about what I do after I go trough my assignments to aid my fellow comrade (I was even planning to do that on a day-to-day basis) but unfortunately I didn’t really have much time (=I got lazy) and til today, there was no single post regarding this.
In order to make that up, herewith I present you my work life so far, in a nutshell (well, a quite big nut I would say :D)
Okay, first my job and my position. I was hired by Transocean, the largest offshore drilling company, as an REP (Rig Engineers Program) Trainee. Well, according to the manual, REP is there to implement a structured approach to the development of future managers of Transocean.
The job of REP trainees is interesting I must say. Not so much mundane talk over the coffee machine everyday since you have to work both in the office and on the rig. The schedule is 4-4-2 (no, it’s not a soccer formation) which is 4 weeks on the rig (yep, full 28 days without breaks even on Saturday and Sunday, 6 AM-6 PM shift), 2 weeks at the office (just like a normal people, 8 AM – 5 PM), and 2 weeks off (in theory..in the real world, if I get a one week break then I have to be grateful). If you see the schedule, it’s not really bad, right? But we haven’t arrived at the fun part.
As an REP trainee, on the first stage (there are 2 stages on this training, I forgot to mention), I have to work on the rig as a Roustabout, up to Driller level. At present, I have only been on two positions, Roustabout and Floorman and I have to tell you that the work is not easy.
As a roustabout, you have to assisst on the main deck (that is where you lay your casing or any other equipments you need to perform the drilling work but would not fit on the rig floor) and almost every area on the rig aside from the rig floor and accomodation. That’s a tough job since the rig is big and I can assure you that things on the rig, no matter how small it is, can outweigh even me easily. So, it was a really a physically demanding job. I had to rabbit the casing, assist in routine job, cleaning the deck, throwing garbage, housekeeping..well, it seemed like menial tasks but can learn a lot about how things are working on the rig.
The Searex IV
Then, I went up to the drill floor (this is where the drilling operation is done) as a floorman. Floormen does not have such a big area of responsibillity as roustabouts, as their work area is just the drill floor. But the works floormen do can not be underestimated. Being on the rig floor, for the first time I knew that working on a rig is such a risky job. Almost anything on the rig floor, given that you’re not using them properly, can take away your finger, arm, or even life. So, if you do have to work on the rig floor, be careful.
The work itself is quite fun because I can see with my own eyes how a drill pipe drills a hole, making connection, breaking it up, in short, roughnecking :D. I still have to do those jobs for another 3 weeks though and I can even start feeling my back aching now :p
After Some Roughnecking
Well, from what you have read, maybe you would thought that this job is not so good (depends on what your preferences in work though), right? So what is this mofo doing keeping the job?
There are “bright sides” of this program. Firstly, as I mentioned above, you will get 2 weeks off after 6 weeks of working. That’s quite something, right? Normally, you will only have 15 days off a year in a normal company :D.
Also, since my rig is on Balikpapan, I have to go to Balikpapan office for my office tasks. Balikpapan is a nice city compared to another oil city like Duri, so it’s not too boring being here for 2 weeks. Not to mention I have a good accomodation while I am here (with an unlimited meal allowance! :D)
I also can get some training regarding well control, and if I get lucky, hopefully it would be outside my home country. Consider it as a free vacation 😀 (I even met Emma Watson because of that, hehehe..)
I guess I’ll stop here for now. I hope whoever reading this can get a big picture of what I do right now.
Til next time.