Category Archive: Saudi Aramco News
With a new batch of students trained and prepared to enter jobs related to the oil industry, the Dammam-based Saudi Petroleum Services Polytechnic (SPSP), inaugurated its new Construction and Drilling Training Center at a graduation ceremony on Thursday, Feb. 27.
The event was attended by HRH Prince Saud Bin Naif, governor of the Eastern Province, HE Ali I. Al-Naimi, the Minster of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, and HE Dr. Ali Al-Ghofais, governor of the Technical and Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC), and Khalid A. Al-Falih, Saudi Aramco president and CEO.
“Undoubtedly, Saudi Arabia, which owns an abundant natural wealth of oil, gas and minerals, is also rich in its human wealth, mostly young people, that need technical and technological education in various areas, especially those associated with petroleum industries and services,” Al-Naimi said during the ceremony.
“Our presence today on the occasion of the CDTC inauguration and graduation ceremony means that we are taking an important step toward the development of young talent in this area,” he added.
His comments were echoed by HE Abdulrahman Bin Muhammad Abdulkarim, advisor for Company’s Affairs in the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources and chairman of the SPSP Board of Trustees. “The CDTC has been established on the initiative of the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, as directed by HE Ali I. Al-Naimi, to demonstrate the ministry’s role and belief in the importance of training and its active role in localizing oil services industry professions.” He also noted its role in preparing Saudi youth to join the labor market, providing them with theoretical and professional knowledge in accordance with international standards.
Talking about the most significant pillars of the CDTC’s success, Abdulkarim added, “They exist in CDTC’s adoption of the train-to-hire principle, as well as providing encouragement and motivation to trainees, such as housing and transport, which stimulate trainees’ perseverance and success.”
Al-Ghofais said SPSP comes “within the network of strategic partnerships that have proven to be effective” and have been able to be highly effective in “working within a specialized environment with rewarding income.” Al-Ghofais extended his thanks to Saudi Aramco “for its active role in operating specialized institutes.”
The SPSP is “a good example of what can be achieved in the area of preparing young Saudis under the umbrella of strategic partnerships launched by TVTC for years,” said Khalid A. Al-Falih, Saudi Aramco president and CEO, emphasizing that Saudi Aramco is proud to be one of the entities that contributed to the SPSP, as well as sponsoring and designing its programs in collaboration with a number of national companies and institutions.
Talking about the National Project for Training on Petroleum Industry Jobs, Al-Falih said, “This project strives to achieve the excellence of qualified Saudi human resources in the industry compared to their peers all over the world, so that these resources will be nationally competitive and sustainable human capital not only on the local level, but also in the energy industry worldwide.”
The project is based on three pillars:
1.To provide state-of-the-art training infrastructure in terms of buildings, training tools and techniques and modern methods.
2.To provide efficient and highly-qualified trainers.
3.To attract and motivate aspiring young trainees to take advantage of these advanced training opportunities.
During the ceremony, a group of SPSP first-year students gave a presentation delivered in English relaying their experiences and reflecting the intensive level of education at SPSP with English being the formal language of study. The students talked about the values that SPSP strives to instill, such as time management, team spirit, achievement, good decision-making and work recognition.
The new center is specialized in construction and drilling training, including technical disciplines in the areas of heavy equipment and drilling in partnership with Saudi Aramco — one of the founders of the center.
For its part, Saudi Aramco provides training curricula, a drilling platform, site preparation and development experts. The facility is the third training center under the umbrella of the SPSP, the first being established in Dammam in 2008 specializing in maintenance and operations. This center was established in collaboration with Saudi Arabian Chevron, while the second training center was established in Khafji last year following the success of the first center to cater for specific local market needs in the oil and gas sector.
With Saudi Aramco and more than a dozen joint ventures expanding operations into new business areas, finding and retaining people with the right skill sets becomes ever more important. To help the company and its partners navigate the challenges, Saudi Aramco held its first Joint Venture (JV) Human Resources Forum on Feb. 25 in Dhahran.
Three administrative areas collaborated to organize this first JV HR Forum: Chemicals, Employee Relations and Training, and Marketing, Supply and Joint Venture Coordination. The forum brought together HR representatives from 13 different joint ventures, subsidiaries and affiliates including Aramco Trading, Aramco Gulf Operations, Luberef, SATORP, Sadara, Petro Rabigh, YASREF, Marafiq, SASREF, and SAMREF, among others.
In his welcoming remarks, Warren Wilder, the executive director for Chemicals, told participants that they are an integral part of the downstream family and “we gather today because we learn faster in groups.”
Wilder encouraged everyone to enrich collaboration and teamwork to improve the performance of company joint ventures. “Today is a step toward further strengthening our partnership,” he said. “Joint ventures have long been a part of the fabric of Saudi Aramco. Those of you here today represent billions of dollars of investment and thousands of employees all contributing to our performance. We not only supply the bulk of the Kingdom’s transportation fuels but also are critical to the economic diversification and growth of the Kingdom.”
Huda M. Al-Ghoson, executive director of Employee Relations and Training, underlined the importance of the event by saying that JVs’ employees are among the most valuable assets.
“For all the technological sophistication that shapes today’s world, developing people remains the source of sustainable competitive advantage and the real foundation for prosperity,” said Al-Ghoson. “The HR strategy for any organization must be defined by developing a culture of excellence, and creating the people advantage to enable the effective and impactful execution of its business agenda.”
Ahmed Al-Subaey, executive director for Marketing, Supply and Joint Venture Coordination, said Saudi Aramco and its joint ventures continue to learn from each other on how to find and retain talented employees.
“Building further human capabilities within our JVs will lead to greater success,” Al-Subaey said. “This can best be achieved by deepening the channels of collaboration between our JVs while maximizing the benefits they receive from Saudi Aramco’s established HR processes. Through collaboration and a willingness to share both successes and failures, our JVs will grow stronger and more capable of facing their HR challenges.”
Led by a trio of experts from international consultancy firms, the HR representatives heard speeches and panel discussions and participated in interactive workshops, all under the theme of “Competency Based HR Processes.” The goal was to gain a deeper understanding of the latest HR practices in selecting, retaining and managing talent according to competencies rather than resumes, and to provide important insights on how to better align employees’ values and goals with that of their employers.
‘UDHAILIYAH, 6/3/2014 — Perfect weather conditions greeted the 65 runners competing in the first ever half marathon held Feb. 7 in ’Udhailiyah.
In addition to his responsibilities as race organizer, ’Udhailiyah Recreation consultant Steve Chard was also competing as a warm-up to his attempt at the London Marathon. Members of the ‘Udhailiyah Fitness Group provided Chard and other runners enthusiastic support.
The race included categories for men, women and teams. Most of the team runners covered a minimum distance of 1 mile each, depending on the number of people in the team, with the final time calculated by the end runner crossing the finish line.
The event attracted runners from Dhahran and ’Udhailiyah, and it was obvious that some competitors were elite class runners.
The course took the runners around the water tower within the family camp and then outside the family gate, down the main boulevard to the main gate and back up the long gentle gradient to loop twice around the golf course and horse stables before re-entering the family camp for a final loop around the water tower and back to the pool complex for the finish line.
Simone Less and Christophe Sargis were fast off the start line and maintained a neck and neck pace through the section inside the family camp and out on the loop around the golf course. Coming down the final stretch, Less managed to surge ahead of Sargis to cross the line in a winning time of 1:18:55, who finished close behind with a time of 1:19:45.
Sargis, fresh off from a second-place showing at the Bahrain International Duathlon two weeks earlier, still finished first in his age category and was pleased with his effort.
First place in the women’s division went to Ria Corbett with a time of 1:45:34. Second place women’s finisher was Maille McGough, followed by Jodie Ashbie.
Special mention went to Corban Remsburg and Aaron Wilson, both only 14 and the youngest runners to complete the entire course. Both come from athletic families. Remsburg’s mother, Maryann, competed in the women’s division while his father was in Oman with Aaron Wilson’s father competing at an international mountain bike race.
Medals and bags filled with sporting treats were distributed to all competitors.
The organizers expressed their appreciation to ‘’Udhailiyah Community Services Division for its support and to the volunteers who helped out on the day of the event.
‘UDHAILIYAH, 6/3/2014 — ‘The ’Udhailiyah Community Services Division (UCSD) recently held the second annual Ladies Celebration event. The event was conceived in 2013 as a way to welcome new ladies into the community and to say thank you to all the women in the community for the contributions they make to the quality of life.
This year’s celebration also explored the Saudi cultural traditions associated with “welcome” in a gesture intended to make all newcomers feel more comfortable in their new home.
About 150 ladies attended the event held at Al-Danah Hall, which began with a welcome from Organizing Committee chairperson Ruth Panello. She outlined the program for the evening, beginning with a message from Mohammed Khamsan, the UCSD administrator — an introduction of all newcomers, a slideshow on Saudi customs, a history of ’Udhailiyah, musical entertainment, and finally, a chance to share an evening with friends old and new.
Since the evening was for women only, Khamsen’s introduction was recorded so that he could greet the ladies while respecting their desire for privacy. Khamsan expressed his appreciation for the contributions of all women in the community and encouraged everyone to become more involved to maintain the high quality of life experienced by ’Udhailiyah residents.
Panello then introduced the Community Services Assistant (CSA) team, highlighting areas of service provided by these women. CSAs work in the administrator’s office compiling data, preparing reports and presentations, and trouble-shooting issues that arise in the community. They also function as new-hire coordinators, ensuring that all newcomers are looked after and accommodated upon their arrival.
The Customer Information Center (CIC) CSAs are front-line communications specialists who are usually the first contact that newcomers have with UCSD in the community. The Safety House and Orientation Center team provides training and safety information for residents and employees alike, while the Quality Assurance team conducts follow-up inspections to ensure all work is carried out to Saudi Aramco standards. Recreation personnel assist with event coordination and self-directed groups. Finally, a special assignment CSA provides public relations services through the corporate publications.
Masters of ceremonies Rachel Abel and Tseye Olorode then began the evening’s program with a slideshow introducing the new ladies, families and babies who arrived in ’Udhailiyah in 2013. Many in the audience were surprised at the number of newcomers who had joined the community.
In a demonstration of the cultural diversity of the community, Abel and Olorode invited all the ladies to stand up as their home continent or country was called out and to remain standing until the whole room was on its feet. Amazingly, ’Udhailiyah boasts a veritable United Nations, with representatives from more than 30 countries.
Olorode then introduced a slideshow depicting the history of ’Udhailiyah, from its humble beginnings as a work camp to the thriving community it is today. Audience members enthusiastically agreed with Olorode that although ’Udhailiyah is often considered “difficult to reach,” it was the best of all the Saudi Aramco communities once you got there.
Abeer Al Sadoun and other Saudi members of the CSA team prepared a special presentation on Saudi customs with the theme “Welcome.” The presentation explained the historical importance of hospitality and human contact, especially in the challenging environment of the deserts of Saudi Arabia before the discovery of oil. Human contact was treasured, and hospitality was more than a mere formality; it was a lifeline extended to friend and foe alike.
Therefore, the traditions of welcoming a guest became codified. These traditions are evident today in the ritual offering of coffee and dates. The act of preparing Arabic coffee was understood as a way of honoring a guest, and the host would always go above and beyond to serve his guest.
Al Sadoun then led the ladies on a tour of al-Hasa — considered one of the largest oases in the world and renowned for its date plantations. The Qarah Mountain caves are particularly sought out in the summer months when the interior is refreshingly cool despite the scorching heat outside. The rebuilt Qasiriyah Suq brings to mind the markets of old, while the Qasr fort offers a glimpse into the nature of frontier life in this Gulf region. Other attractions include the camel market, Asfor Lake and al-Hasa National Museum.
Various cultures have different traditions for welcoming guests, and one tradition is the playing of musical instruments. The ’Udhailiyah ladies were very fortunate to be able to hear world-class pianist Julia Gromohovskya perform the Fantasie Impromptu by Chopin. Gromohovskya is a resident of ’Udhailiyah and has performed for the community on one previous occasion.
A surprise “guest” sent a recorded message from her home city of Birmingham, England. Chika Udezue, who lived in ’Udhailiyah from 1995 to 2006 and worked in the CIC office, sent greetings from afar and encouraged all the ladies to become involved, learn Arabic and not be shy about exploring their new home.
The assembled guests were then serenaded by Nedes Angulo Reyes, whose vocal rendition of “Besame Mucho” was accompanied by a backdrop of slides depicting life in ’Udhailiyah.
In closing, the organizing committee recognized those who had contributed to the previous year’s event and thanked the ladies who participated in this year’s celebration of women.
The formal program being finished, the ladies then enjoyed a sumptuous feast followed by impromptu regional dances. As a final gift, each lady went home with a silk scarf designed by Marwa Sirajudan. The design reflected the landscape of ’Udhailiyah through its jebels and flowers.
The UCSD team of CSAs devoted many hours to the organization of this special event, and their efforts paid off as witnessed by the smiles on the faces of all the attendees. The organizers expressed their appreciation to UCSD for their very generous support for the event.
“Delivering on Tomorrow” emphasizes commitment to the future of energy supply at the annual Saudi Petroleum Overseas Limited (SPOL) reception.
More than 600 of Saudi Aramco’s key customers and partners attended SPOL’s annual reception as part of the Energy Institute’s International Petroleum (IP) Week in London, United Kingdom.
This year’s theme was “Delivering on Tomorrow,” emphasizing the company’s commitment to the future of energy supply.
Salah Al-Hareky, managing director of SPOL, addressed the invitees, highlighting Saudi Aramco’s continued investment toward new supplies, technologies, refining capacity and, of course, people.
“As a responsible and reliable mass producer of energy, Saudi Aramco continues to ensure security of supply by maintaining investment stamina at a time when the global economy continues to recover,” he said. “This approach signals how highly we value our stakeholders, understanding that it is a two-way relationship in which we must show our responsibility and commitment to ensure a healthy industry.”
Al-Hareky also touched on how the theme reflected Saudi Aramco’s ambition of becoming a global energy and petrochemicals enterprise — an ambition underlined by the construction of projects such as the Kingdom’s innovative Manifa oil field, as well as major joint ventures such as Sadara, SATORP and YASREF, all three of which are in partnership with major industrial companies.
Formed in 1990, affiliate SPOL provides the link between Saudi Aramco and its customers in Europe, Africa and South America. It is responsible for the marketing of crude and liquefied petroleum gas in these regions while also producing studies and reports for the global business, including market data and information on the energy industry.
The IP Week itself is considered to be the leading forum for oil and gas, attracting more than 2,000 key influencers and decision-makers from around the globe. In addition to Saudi Aramco, other companies attending IP Week events were employees from BP, Shell, Total, ExxonMobil, and the U.S. Energy Department.
Host of a variety of three-day conferences, workshops and roundtables, the Energy Institute is a globally recognized professional membership body composed of more than 16,000 individuals and 250 companies worldwide. Membership to the Institute underpins Saudi Aramco’s commitment to promote and engage in best practice while raising the company’s profile among customers and partners within the industry.