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Roughneck Salary

Updated on May 30, 2012

Roughneck Salaries

The US drilling industry is booming. And with current forecasts projecting steady growth in the near future, opportunities for entry level employees are better than ever. In fact, most employers have been offering record levels of pay in order to keep up with demand. For example, the average Roughneck salary has climbed from $31,000 in 2011 to over $41,000 today. But which Roughnecks are paid the most? To answer this, the following page will breakdown the 3 main factors that affect how much Roughnecks make in the field. Continue below to find out what a new Roughneck can do to start maximizing their earnings. (If you would like to add helpful tips based on your experience, please leave a comment at the bottom of the page. All comments will be moderated.)

→ Salaries for Mud Engineers have set new highs. Find out how much they make and how to become one by clicking on the link below. Anyone can get started.

Mud Engineer Salary – HubPages.com



Follow Demand – Roughneck salaries are higher in Texas, Oklahoma, and North Dakota than they are in other regions of the U.S. In fact, most high paying states are those that have had a surge of new drilling activity. By choosing to work in a growing area with high levels of demand, you can prime your career for better pay rates and work bonuses. In addition, active drilling areas often provide more opportunities for advancement. States like Louisiana and Pennsylvania can be great places to gain experience when starting out. By being where you are most needed, you can earn quicker promotions in the field and have better career opportunities in the future.

Invest in Your Skills – To advance your career and earn more money, you need to invest in developing your skills. Learn as much as you can about how to do a better job. After mastering your job and the tasks that you are expected to perform, start learning about some of the other jobs on the drilling rig. Learn about MWD or mud engineer jobs. Discover what it is that they do and how they got started in the industry. Many times all it took was completing a short training course (like mud school) to enter a high paying service specialty. Make your own opportunities so that you can enjoy the rewards that follow.

Network for Success – Studies show that the industry’s top earners maintain a good network of contacts. By developing your own network, you can take advantage of field relationships too. The quicker you realize that “who you know” is as vital as “what you know,” the better you can position yourself for advancement. In fact, this is one area where Roughnecks would be wise to observe the networking skills of Mud Engineers. Included below are some helpful networking tips which can lead to higher salaries if properly practiced.


  1. Meet People – A network is made of people. The more people you meet, the larger your potential network. Start by meeting coworkers and supervisors, then work your way around to meeting the different managers in your company. Learn things about these people and focus on building a common ground. Discover some shared interests that you can talk about to keep the conversation going. When you have become relatively comfortable talking with them, ask for some career advice. Good advice pays.
  2. Collect Contact Information – You will need a way to keep in touch with your contacts. To do this, casually ask your coworkers, supervisors, and managers for their contact information. Basic information like phone numbers and email addresses are great places to start. If they have a business card, pick one up. Keep all of your contact information in a safe place where it can be easily referenced in the future. You will have to call them or email them at least once per month to keep your relationship fresh.
  3. Communicate and Interact – When keeping in touch with your contacts, it is important to add something of value to your relationship. Find something new to share that you both enjoy. Ask them about what they are doing and try to set up activities in real life. Also, many people have developed the bad habit of forwarding joke emails to their professional contacts. This is not advised because joke emails are often annoying and show a lack of respect for your relationship. Instead of forwarding a joke, send them a link to a YouTube video that you know they will appreciate.


→ Industry opportunities are surging and it is an excellent time to get started in a new high paying career. Click on the link below for another related article.

Mud Engineer Jobs – HubPages.com

Oil Rig Jobs – In Demand

Roughnecks at Work

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