Employees of Noble Energy have been warned with the company’s newly-announced plan to lay off more of its workers. Noble says that the cuts are an attempt to “streamline” company operations and direct focus on the best-performing oil fields.
Noble Energy would not reveal the number of workers they planned to lay off. This round of job cuts will mark Noble’s fourth elimination over the last 18 months. “This is very limited,” said company spokesperson, Reba Reid, “It’s very focused on exploration.”
Noble said in a statement to the Houston Chronicle that the company would boost their “onshore U.S. value” and select the best offshore land possible. Before the end of the year, said Noble, “limited workforce reductions” will be completed.
Just last year in April, Noble cut 230 jobs which accounted for 10 percent of their total workforce at that time. The mass layoff was an effort to cut back on spending in the middle of an oil price slump. Nearly half of the jobs cut were located in Houston. Other cuts were also made in the states of Colorado and Pennsylvania.
In summer 2015, Noble purchased the Houston-based production company, Rosetta Resources. The $2.1 billion deal gave Noble Rosetta’s 50,000 acres in the Eagle Ford basin of South Texas, as well as 56,000 acres in the Permian basin of West Texas. As a result of the deal, 65 of Rosetta’s workers were laid off with a majority cut from the corporate ranks of the company.
By November 2015, Noble Energy publicized another job cut. This time, 180 jobs were on the chopping block with 60 in the state of Texas. By then, Noble had withdrawn all of its rigs from the Marcellus Shale, a gas-rich formation the northeastern region of the U.S Just three rigs remained in the DJ basin of northern Colorado. Noble even considered dropping the number of rigs in their newly-acquired properties in the Eagle Ford and Permian basins. It planned to run just one rig in each region.
As of December 2015, Noble reported a total of 2,395 workers in its employ. This number included 340 foreign nationals.
Not many companies in the industry have been able to avoid layoffs during the current price slump. Anadarko Petroleum Corp is the fourth-biggest oil company in the U.S. In March, the oil giant announced their plan to eliminate 1,000 jobs, 17 percent of its total staff. Houston-based Southwestern Energy Co. announced plans to eliminate 1,100 jobs which is a whopping 40 percent of the company’s workforce. BP, Chevron, Conoco, and Shell have also eliminated thousands of positions amid the price crash.
Oil field service companies have also felt the effects of the crash. Weatherford International has eliminated roughly 35,000 employees or half of their total workers over the course of two years. Halliburton has also cut 35,000 jobs in two years or 40 percent of the company’s staff. Finally, the biggest oil services firm in the world, Schlumberger, has eliminated 50,000 jobs from its employee pool. Following this cut of one-third from the company, just 100,000 workers remain in Schlumberger’s employ.