Stock photo: Field staff at a pump jack.

CALGARY, Alberta – Twenty Twenty One.  Fairness and equality are at the forefront of every media release and public engagement.  It has become so intertwined with daily life, it’s almost instinct.  And following that trend, Calgary-based oil producer Sameness Exploration has begun its 2021 winter drilling program with a new spin.  And a musical one at that.

Inspired by the classic children’s game of musical chairs, the new operational program will ensure all staff on a drilling site are given a fair shot at working in all positions, regardless of gender, race, skill, experience, or education.

Once all staff have arrived on site, a large loudspeaker will begin to play circus music and staff will begin to walk around the outside of the location.  The music will be stopped at a random time and all staff will race each other to a shack, building, control console, or machine.  The location or operation they get to first is their responsibility for that day.  The next shift change, the process repeats, and so on until the operation is completed.

Will Fairall, CEO Sameness Exploration

“We’re aiming to give the roughnecks a shot at consulting, and the consultants a reminder of being a roughneck.  The driller gets to log samples and the geologists get to sleep on the couch like an MWD hand.  The mudman gets to gets to think he’s God like a directional driller, and the Medic might be able to do a drilling mud tasting.  It’s all about rounding out the experience for everyone on site.  Of course each day’s shift wages will be per position, not based on which staff member does each job.” – Will Fairall, CEO Sameness Exploration

The first 3 drilling sites are located in the Drayton Valley area, with future drilling plans further into the deep basin region between Edson and Grande Cache.

Before putting this plan into full effect, the executive management team at Sameness Exploration conducted a number of field tests for its Equal Pay and Equal Duties for All (EPEDA) fairness and equity program, with remarkable results. One issue the company found with the new program is that, even through the music was stopped at random, some staff ended up with the same station day after day, and in some cases for the duration of the simulated drill. Michael Torris, a directional drilling contractor who was part of the early program testing, spoke to 2P News this morning about his experiences during a mock trial.

Michael Torris, directional drilling contractor

“Yeah, I’m a directional driller and i like to keep busy. But I wound up being the night-duty wellsite geologist 6 out of 7 nights. Hey listen, i’m an a-type personality who likes to keep very, very busy. But with all due respect to the wellsite geo, sitting around on a couch for 12 hours at a time, half awake, flipping through crusty hustler magazines and eating doritos isn’t exactly my idea of keeping busy.” – Bruce Nutall, directional driller.

Despite some of the trial results, Sameness Exploration hopes that its winter 2021 drilling program under this new EPEDA field operational fairness strategy will be widely successful and expects that other E&P companies will soon follow suit.


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