Geological and petroleum technicians held about 16,500 jobs in 2014. The industries that employed the most geological and petroleum technicians were as follows:
Support activities for mining
Oil and gas extraction
Management, scientific, and technical consulting services
Geological and petroleum technicians spend most of their time in the field and in laboratories, or analyzing data in offices. Fieldwork requires technicians to work outdoors, sometimes in remote locations, where they are exposed to all types of weather. In addition, technicians may need to stay on location in the field for days or weeks to collect data and monitor equipment. Geological and petroleum technicians who work in offices spend most of their time working on computers—organizing and analyzing data, writing reports, and producing maps.
Most geological and petroleum technicians work full time. Technicians generally work a standard schedule in laboratories and offices, but hours spent in the field may be long or irregular.