​Transitioning to a Better Business

Thursday, October 22, 2020

At Danos, we are known throughout the energy industry for steady leadership, an excellent safety record, superior customer service and technical expertise. That’s why so many oil and gas producers, including Shell Pipeline Company LP, Chevron and BP, have trusted our team to transition and manage their production workforce in both offshore and onshore environments, including logistical, shorebase and materials management support facilities.

With more than 70 years managing production workforce operations, Danos has developed a successful model for handling transitions that minimizes downtime and disruption while maintaining the highest standards for safety. Our human resources team is among the best in the business, maintaining a pool of pre-vetted, qualified candidates ready to start work quickly. And thanks to Danos’ appealing combination of compensation, company culture, multigenerational private ownership and mission-driven leadership, our long-term employee turnover rate is 15% - that's half of the industry average of 30%! 

Danos Can Handle Any Challenge

In 2009, Danos handled a large transition of all contract employees for a major Gulf of Mexico deepwater operator. In order to process so many workers, we deployed an expert transition team to crew-change sites — three times per week for four weeks. This approach enabled the team to transition 97% of the 150 contract employees within 30 days. Thanks to our robust HR effort, which included recruiting and account management, Danos also filled the positions of those who didn’t transfer within the same time period.     

For another client with both shelf and deepwater assets, Danos transitioned 128 of 168 employees in 30 days, then filled the 40 remaining openings in the next 30 days. In addition to the large number of employees, the geographic distribution of worksites was also a challenge. Employees were located from southeast Louisiana to the Houston area. In order to complete the transition without incident or disruption to operations, we deployed teams from Danos’ offices in Larose, Gray, Lafayette and Houston, where employees could be conveniently processed on their way on or off the job.

The Danos team has proven successful at handling transitions in the Permian Basin as well. In one case we effectively consolidated all of a client’s pumper positions — previously managed by multiple contractors — under a single source workforce provider. More than 65 workers were transitioned with zero incidents and with a turnover rate of under 10%.

The Danos Approach

In many production workforce transitions, Danos is stepping in to replace another contractor who failed to meet customer expectations. With this in mind, we begin each endeavor by establishing a partnership with the client and setting clear goals and key performance indicators (KPIs) for the transition and beyond.

Depending on each customer’s situation, Danos will provide specific goals for important metrics like TRIR, asset or employee downtime, retention and turnover rates, as well as a firm timetable for execution. The objective is to always maintain a record of zero safety incidents and to retain 100% of identified employees. Throughout the transition and beyond, our team continues to report progress on these KPIs, including long-term retention figures.

Danos’ Team of Experts

Danos recognizes that people are key to the success of any business endeavor, but especially oil and gas production. Any change or disruption to the normal flow of work can create issues for employees and operations alike, so we make the transition process as smooth and reassuring as possible. Our extensive experience managing production workforce operations enables us to handle transitions of any size or complexity.

The key to our success is the local knowledge, presence and expertise of our team of transition experts who stand ready to execute the transition plan. Our team brings veteran experience and deep knowledge of Danos’ core values and culture to every challenge. As we work through each step of the transition process, our team remains in constant communication with both the client and Danos leadership in order to ensure all activity proceeds as planned and on schedule.

While each project has specific business goals, we never lose sight of the importance of caring for the employees involved. Any major change can create anxiety or stress for workers, who may worry about how events will affect their professional life or their families. That’s why at Danos we prioritize effective communication throughout the transition and beyond: Employees receive timely and reliable information in order to minimize their uncertainty and reassure them about the changes underway.

We believe successful workforce transitions are built on effective person-to-person interaction, from initial planning meetings with clients, to face-to-face meetings with employees. That’s why the average Danos transition team consists of six to ten area experts, including human resources, operations, accounting, training, safety and account management. The team meets with employees wherever they are, often during crew changes. This enables all aspects of the transition to be handled quickly and comprehensively, minimizing downtime while answering employee questions and assisting the client as needed.

Another important element of the Danos approach is the support of a dedicated account manager, carefully selected and assigned to take personal responsibility for ensuring effective communication, including safety updates and personal management of employees. These account managers are highly experienced with backgrounds in field production operations. This helps them connect with employees working in those positions while helping clients navigate the challenges of any transition. And because account managers are based in local offices, they remain highly involved and connected once the transition process is complete.

The Danos HR Advantage

Danos understands that qualifying and retaining current contract employees is only the first step in a successful transition. Maintaining a big-picture perspective and developing detailed plans for the future make it possible for our team to continue to provide highly consistent workforce management support across multiple facilities. We also understand the importance of ensuring that employee benefits and compensation remain competitive and sustainable for the future.

Once the initial transition is complete, we move on to filling any vacancies with qualified new workers. Danos’ proactive hiring approach employs recruiters and multiple HR specialists to identify qualified candidates across multiple service lines, ensuring effective screening and vetting. Thanks to this ongoing outreach, we offer clients a pre-qualified and pre-screened pool of both on and offshore production workers with specific skill sets ready to start work immediately. Often, we are able to transfer employees from other active positions very quickly, since no onboarding is needed. Candidates already in the Danos pool can be on the job in just a few days.

Finding the right person for each position is essential, which is why Danos has implemented a state-of-the-art competency assurance and training program across its workforce and integrated service lines. This online-based technology allows us to accurately measure workforce competency like never before. Developed by oil and gas subject-matter experts using the latest in 3D modeling, this system enables Danos to screen, assess and train workers more efficiently and safely.

Danos Culture and Retention

Losing experienced employees is bad for business. That’s why Danos prides itself on maintaining a turnover rate that is only half the industry average. The secret to our retention success is our unique combination of an appealing company culture, family ownership, competitive compensation and longevity in the energy industry.

As a company, Danos is defined by its purpose: Honor God. Develop great people to solve big challenges for its customers and communities. Our values are embodied in the steady leadership of the Danos family, now in its third-generation. As a result, we are known for being family-oriented, supportive of employee growth and engaged in local communities.

During transitions, our team works hard to make new employees feel valued and welcome. Our goal is to make the process as smooth and convenient for them as possible. We know that in many cases, workers have been through one or more prior transitions or upheavals, so we are intentional about offering them a better option: a stable, permanent home in a family-owned company.

Our outstanding culture gives employees a sense of security, as well as ongoing support and opportunities for growth. This in turn engenders greater employee loyalty and makes it harder for other companies to lure our talent away. We offer competitive and generous compensation, along with opportunities to actively support and engage with local communities through our employee-led charitable foundation.

Superior Safety

Safety is always the most important concern for any production company. That’s why Danos puts safety at the forefront of everything we do. When it comes to managing a new workforce, our account managers take on increased safety responsibilities, but we also deploy our safety leaders at crew changes and on assets to proactively handle ongoing issues and education. From minimizing risk on the platform to emphasizing safety through education, our team goes above and beyond to make sure everyone is operating safely.

The results speak for themselves:

The Danos Difference

Many businesses provide production workforce management, but none can offer the unique combination of experience, safety, excellence, family-ownership and culture that Danos is known for. By working closely with customers as partners, we believe in taking a proactive approach to ensure that transitions are successful over both the short and long term.