Drilling engineers, who design and manage well drilling plans, saw their average salaries grow more than 9 percent to $159,127, the biggest jump in annual salary, according to the report. Production and operations engineers, who oversee field operations when wells start producing oil and gas, also saw a 9 percent salary jump, earning $163,748.
The average annual salary for reservoir engineers, who are often the highest paid in the industry, jumped a meager 1 percent to $168,722 in 2012, following a 20 percent jump the year before.
CSI Recruiting, a Denver-based staffing agency, analyzed the salaries and bonuses of more than 2,400 workers in the U.S. oil and gas exploration and production industry, including engineers, geologists and technicians. Skilled workers have been in short supply during the drilling boom, causing salaries to grow higher in many fields.
How other fields fared in the survey:
|Engineering technicians||$90,630||up 3.3%|
|Geological/geophysical technicians||$89,185||up 2.2%|
|Land technicians||$72,060||down 0.1%|