In a quest to maintain and enrich its employees’ knowledge base to not only have competitive edge but also prepare the workforce to handle the ever increasing complexity in hydrocarbon extraction and production, today's energy companies employ training programs to equip their experienced personnel with skills that can be utilized to effectively handle challenging projects. Saudi Aramco, among many technical specialist programs, has also developed an all-encompassing training program for experienced professionals, which upon completion will allow the individual to perform duties as a subject matter expert (SME) in production engineering related job skills. This accelerated Production Engineering Specialist Program (PESP) is designed to make the transition from a young professional to an expert in a specific subject with a customized approach to his background and tailored to his future career path.

PESP is applicable to young engineers after attaining five years of post-university experience, exposing them to various facets of production engineering and focusing on an explicit specialty. The Program incorporates seven specialties, all related to Production Engineering. These specialties are Stimulation, Well Completion, Electrical Submersible Pumps, Well Intervention, Well Treatments, Production Optimization and Intelligent Field. Completion of the Program is time-based but rather mandated by completing predetermined tasks in all aspects of the respective specialty and customized to the participant's background.

The program has yielded several graduates since its inception. It is a proven successful program, which has allowed PESP graduates to move around the company in assignments, targeted to provide support expertise in their related specialty in challenging situations. The paper will provide details of the PESP structure, typical Individual Development Plans (IDPs) for these seven specialties and how PESP graduates can help the company to meet the technical challenges for upcoming mega-projects by utilizing their expert knowledge as SMEs. PESP has a broader scope to build an interchangeable pool of SMEs that can minimize the need and dependence of acquiring knowledge from service companies and in addition be able to train future generations of young professionals.

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