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Polaris Learning and Drillmar Resources Pushing Forward with Contractor Competency Management

Polaris Learning and Drillmar Resources Pushing Forward with Contractor Competency Management


Ensuring and demonstrating the competency of contractors has always been an issue in the energy industry, and with so many organisations relying on contractors, it is an issue that remains a priority.

Launched in October 2020, Polaris Learning and Drillmar worked together to develop a bespoke competence management system for Drillmar, using Polaris Learning’s Cloud Based Competency Management software, Progress.

We caught up with the team at Drillmar, to reflect on the experience so far and started by asking about the experience of working together on this project:

Iain Grant, Well Services / PPS Operations Manager told us: “We have worked closely with the team at Polaris Learning to get the competency management system live, with tailored content that reflects what our people are doing and need to be competent in. Everyone pulled together and made this work even though at times we were all really busy, coping with the impact of COVID 19 on top of day to day business. The service from Polaris Learning was excellent.”

Sarah-Jane Innes, Operations Manager, Drilling added: “The level of service was exceptional because of the knowledge Polaris Learning has of the drilling industry. Our expectations were easily met as Polaris Learning have such a great understanding of what we are looking for.  If Drillmar was busy operationally, Polaris Learning would keep the ball rolling and stick to the plans. With regards to the content of the competency management system, it is spot on in alignment with what they are looking for with drilling. None of the guys, roustabout or roughneck, have said it is out of place or that they could not complete it.”

Steve Cruickshank, Consultant: “The team at Polaris Learning is really supportive and it is encouraging to have the level of experience available. The consultant appointed is always available and there’s back support there to step in. The project plan was laid out clearly from the start and Polaris Learning made it clear what was required and was flexible, while being clear what was required from Drillmar.  If the ball was in Polaris Learning’s court, it was done quickly.”

We talked about how this competency management system will help Drillmar and their subsidiary Drilltrain, going forward:

“This work has given us a platform that allows us to enhance our business offering to our clients.  CVs alone are not enough and we have to prove competence of the people we place.  This will also be a partnership where both Polaris Learning and Drillmar can work together in the future,” said Sarah-Jane and Iain added “The beauty of an evidence based, online, competency management system means that we know that our guys are trained and deemed competent, and we can demonstrate this whenever we need to.”

Finally, we spoke to Raymond Bruce, Managing Director at Drillmar: “We have always provided competent people to our clients, using the competency skill set as the main driver in our selection of people.  

Now our clients, more than ever, need an agency workforce competent from day one.  So many of them have fewer permanent staff and they need to know that our people are going to do the job well.  

Drilling contractors and service companies need to be able to rely on agencies to provide technically competent people as well people who can coach, mentor and improve the crews.”

And Keith Adam Managing Director, Polaris Learning added: “Managing and demonstrating the competency of the offshore workforce is critical.  Polaris Learning has helped a large number of our clients to do this effectively and it is critical that everyone going offshore remains competent and able to work safely and securely in this current downturn.  Drilling contractors and service companies need to know that everyone on their jobs is competent and ready to go, even if they have had a reasonably long break.”

An Extract from Drillmar’s Competency Management System:

For more information, please get in touch with Polaris Learning: or +44 (0)1651 873398.

Read the latest issue of the OGV Energy magazine HERE.  

Published: 19-07-2021

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