Geoscientists work to discover and develop with natural resources by creating models of the earth’s subsurface. A geoscientist will often work with the aim of discovering reserves of resources for exploitation by commercial firms. There are many specialisations within the geoscientist role and further qualifications to a BSc (such as a masters in geology) will often be required for graduates to enter the field. Let’s take a look at insights directly from graduates working in geoscience…

1. Day-to-day tasks

‘I will study geological and geophysical data and reports compiled on a region, and combine them to give my own interpretation of the prospect to be used as a foundation to assessing their future economic potential.’
Graduate Geoscientist, Subsurface at Centrica
‘Interpret seismic data to understand the geology that is imaged and use this understanding, together with other data sources to describe the geology of a certain area. This is then used to inform business decisions such as acquiring acreage or drilling a well.’
Geophysicist, at BP
‘I research into improving the way Defence manages its spatial data. On the technical side I develop prototype applications to support my research. I also engage with a variety of people within the MoD to offer specialist advice within my domain.’
Scientist, Geospatial Intelligence at DSTL

2. Best and worst things about your job

‘Interesting work & friendly colleagues. Exciting practical challenges to solve everyday. Office location.’
Exploration Geoscientist, Exploration at BP
‘Positives: The work is wide ranging and interesting. Very good induction process and development opportunities. Some of my work can be beneficial/support operations and saving lives of UK forces in places like Afghanistan. The flexible hours. Negatives: The salary isn’t great, but there a regular opportunities for gradual pay increases. I have been taken on a 2-year development program and will have to reapply for a permanent position.’
Scientist, Geospatial Intelligence at DSTL
‘Positives: My role is very varied and interesting, well paid and we are given plenty of opportunity to do career-enhancing training and get invaluable experience working offshore. Negatives: The company sold us a graduate scheme with freedom and breadth to work in varied roles, but instead the company is trying to make us pick very narrow career paths right from the outset. “
Graduate Geoscientist, Well Planning at BP

3. Average working hours

8am – 5pm

4. Average salary

£37,000 – £39,000

5. Interview tips

Application Advice: Take your time! Don’t feel tempted to say ‘oh, that will do’. Research the role, company and company values and the people interviewing you (LinkedIn, journals etc.) and put together an application you are really proud of.
Interview Advice: Research the people interviewing you (LinkedIn, journals etc.) – asking questions shows you have done your research. When they ask “do you have any questions for us?”, don’t say “no”.
Graduate Consultant, Geotechnical at WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff
Application Advice: Must have an open mind
Interview Advice: Always speak with confidence. You don’t know everything, so don’t act like you do. It’s ok to admit when you’re wrong but understand always that you must learn from your mistakes.
Seismic Engineer, Seismic at Schlumberger
Application Advice: Prepare thoroughly, not only in setting out your CV correctly for each job you apply for, but also for the interview. You don’t know exactly what questions you will be asked, but generally interviews are quite formulaic, asking about strengths, weaknesses, probably your work as a student…
Interview Advice: Tell the interviewer you want the job…
Graduate GIS Consultant, Environment / GIS at AECOM Ltd
Click here for the full range of job reviews for graduate positions in the field of geoscience and take a look at BG’s video below for more of an idea of what being a graduate geophysicist involves!

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