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  3. Downhole Tool Specialist

Downhole Tool Specialist

NOC #83101

  • Environment Primarily outdoor work
  • Education Post-secondary diploma
  • Average salary $56,000 to $97,000

Career profile

Downhole tool specialists are responsible for ensuring that the necessary tools are included in the bottom hole assembly (BHA); the equipment at the end of a drill string on a drilling rig. The types of tools selected are based on the reservoir formation. They are used during well drilling, evaluation, intervention, completion and production. Once the tools are in position, downhole tool specialists operate and monitor the tool to ensure the work is successfully completed.

Once the BHA is withdrawn from the wellbore, downhole tool specialists perform maintenance and/or repairs on the tools to make sure they are ready to be used again in the future.

Oil and gas services

In this occupation activities may include:

  • Setting up and calibrating tools.
  • Rigging up and rigging out all related wireline cased hole or open hole equipment
  • Checking and loading the necessary equipment required for scheduled jobs
  • Completing all required logs and other company documentation for invoicing purposes
  • Maintaining an inventory of downhole tools, spare parts, expendables and consumables
  • Driving the wireline unit to and from various job locations
  • Operating tools for completions or work-over activities in concert with other members of the crew


  • A post-secondary diploma in a mechanical, electrical, electronics, instrumentation, petroleum engineering technology or related discipline is typically required. A post-secondary degree in an applied science discipline, such as engineering, mathematics and geology, is also an option.


  • Standard and emergency first aid
  • H2S Alive®
  • Oilfield Driver Awareness
  • IPIA Used BHA Inspection Certificate or In-House BHA Inspection Certificate
  • ASNT Level II in MPI
  • ASNT Level II in LPI
  • Minimum 1-year experience in BHA inspection
  • API Spec 7 thread gauging
  • API 5 CT, 5 B, 7-1/7-2 are considered assets
  • Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) 2015


  • Class 3 or 5 driver’s licence (or equivalent) appropriate to the vehicle being driven and a clean driving record
  • Accreditation and professional membership through a recognized organization such as the Association of Science and Engineering Technology Professionals of Alberta (ASET) or the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA) is preferred by most oil and natural gas service companies

Additional Requirements

  • Ability to pass a pre-employment physical assessment and drug test


  • Travel likely required
  • Shiftwork/variable work hours
  • Primarily outdoor work
  • Physical work
  • Safety-sensitive environment
  • Work away from home/in camps

You bring physics and electronics together. Often working alone, you’re independent but you also have the interpersonal skills required to work with a crew.

  • Critical thinking
  • Mechanics
  • Public safety and security
  • Selecting equipment
  • Monitoring operations
  • Active listening
  • Installing equipment
  • Complex problem solving
  • Instructing others
  • Attention to detail