What it does: Global group of petrochemical and energy businesses
Staff stats: 90,000 employees in 70 countries
The good bits: The training and travel
The not so good bits: Bureaucracy
The Shell story
Royal Dutch Shell, commonly referred to as Shell, is the result of one of the 20th century’s earliest and most significant mergers. In 1907, the Royal Dutch Petroleum Company amalgamated with the ‘Shell’ Transport and Trading Company. (This was a British business that had pivoted from selling antiques to importing sea shells.)
During WWI, Royal Dutch Shell was the main supplier of fuel to the British armed forces. Following the war, it absorbed the Mexican Eagle Petroleum Company and launched Shell Chemicals. By the end of the 1920s, Royal Dutch Shell was the world’s leading oil company. That’s a status it has more or less enjoyed ever since, though it has diversified into producing other forms of energy.
Shell has been operating in Australia since 1901. Initially, it just imported fuel. It then expanded by establishing storage and distribution terminals, oil refineries and service stations. When it became apparent Australia had significant energy reserves, Shell Australia moved into coal mining and oil exploration. Shell is currently the leading partner in the $25 billion North West Shelf Venture, the largest resource development ever undertaken in this part of the world.
In 2016, Shell had revenues of US$233 billion and assets worth US$411 billion.
Like many globe-spanning multinationals, Shell is enthusiastic about ensuring “diversity in the ethnicity, nationality and gender” of its workforce and senior leaders. It keeps close track of how diverse its workforce is through regular surveys. It also has a “dedicated D&I [diversity and inclusion] consulting practice with focal points located in various Shell businesses and functions”. The company puts on “D&I workshops and lunch-and-learn sessions” to raise awareness among its staff.
Shell acknowledges that its activities have an environmental and social impact. To balance that, it seeks to provide communities that have not previously had it access to safe, reliable and affordable energy. It also aims to contribute to economic growth in the countries it operates. It does this by offering direct employment and the opportunity for local suppliers to be included in supply chains. Shell has a LiveWIRE program that helps local entrepreneurs launch businesses. It also helps finance healthcare and education services in many of the communities where it operates.
Shell Australia has long had relationships with Indigenous communities throughout Australia and launched a Reconciliation Action Plan in 2011. This states, “Shell employees will acknowledge and respect the culture and contribution to Australia of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and recognise that true and lasting reconciliation improves prosperity for all Australians.”
Though still involved in old and polluting energies, Shell is committed to sustainability. It has made huge investments in “low-carbon energy solutions and advanced technologies, such as those that increase energy efficiency and reduce emissions”.
The recruitment process
Shell recruits grads from a wide range of disciplines. That noted, it has a greater need for those with degrees in accounting, commerce and finance; chemistry; computer and earth sciences; engineering; geology; surveying; management; marketing; physics and supply chain management. Handily, you can go to the degree matcher page on the Shell Australia website to find out what kind of career path is available given your qualifications.
Depending on what area of the business they aspire to be part of, grads take part in development programs that last from two to five years. Grads are divided into those joining the technical and those joining the commercial side of the business. Whichever side you opt for, you’ll take part in a comprehensive onboarding program that will expose you to all areas of the business. You’ll then do several rotations and combine on-the-job learning with formal training. You’ll have a direct supervisor, who will provide supportive guidance and constructive feedback, as well as access to a mentorship program.
The process starts with a brief online application, which can be made even quicker if you link to your LinkedIn profile. After that, you’ll need to do an online timed cognitive test, online working style assessment and an online short, self-recorded video interview. If you make the cut, you’ll then be invited to take part in an online interview. This will include doing a presentation relating to a case study, with two Shell staff.
Finally, you be invited to a nearby Shell office to meet with staff at all levels and learn more about what a career at Shell involves. (If you want to get an idea of whether you’d be happy at Shell prior to graduating, you can apply for one of Shell’s 12-week internships.)
Shell says it offers “a competitive starting salary and other outstanding benefits”. Most grads are delighted with what one described as “great bonuses on top of amazing pay”. You may have the opportunity to work on overseas projects. If you do, all your travel and relocation expenses will be covered by the company. Depending on what area you’re in, you may also have any external education costs covered, as well as receiving paid study leave. Staff also receive ‘flex days’, which are essentially bonus days of annual leave.
The company has a fair and transparent promotion process. If you perform well and develop strong networks, you can look forward to rising up the ranks.
The vibe of the place
This varies depending on what area of the business you’re in. Generally speaking, Shell invests a lot in developing its employees. It gives them lots of responsibility from early on and rewards them if they rise to the challenges set. You can expect to form some fantastic friendships with your colleagues and spend plenty of time socialising with them out of hours. The culture is friendly and perks such as ‘flex days’ make up for those times when you need to put in long hours.
Star Rating: 4.4 stars
From the Employer:
"Introduction to Shell
If you think you know Shell, think again. We may be well known for our petrochemicals business, but to become one of the world’s leading energy companies takes a wide range of talented individuals.
Powering Progress Together
Shell is an innovation-driven global energy and petrochemical company operating in over 70 countries and employing approximately 93,000 people. More people want cleaner and greater access to energy. At Shell, we are unlocking new energy sources and working to get more from what we have. With others, we are finding innovative ways to meet growing energy demands and helping customers to get the most out of every drop of fuel. By building a better energy future we all have a part to play.
To build a brighter future for all, we’re in search of students and graduates who can translate inspiration into ideas, and ideas into game-changing solutions.
Embark on a fulfilling and rewarding career at Shell via
- Hands on experience of international projects
- Work that makes a difference
- Professional and individual development
- World-class training and unequalled career opportunities
Right now, Shell is working on some of the most exciting, innovative energy projects in the world. We’re in search of students and graduates who are curious to explore new ideas, experiences and frontiers.
Why join Shell?
There has never been a more exciting time to work in the energy industry, or at Shell. Discover your potential with Shell with outstanding career opportunities.
You’ll be empowered to carve out your own career path and discover your true potential. You’ll have the opportunity to work with leading professionals from around the world, sharing expertise and points of view that will hugely enrich your experience.
We encourage collaboration and believe that by surrounding you with a great diverse team, your creativity will flourish and great ideas will be inspired.
We are committed to your continuous training and development, with excellent learning opportunities available to you at every stage of your career.
Diversity & Inclusiveness at Shell
We strive to maintain a work environment where everyone can apply and develop skills and talents consistent with our values and business objectives. This applies to every employee, regardless of location, gender, ethnicity and physical abilities.
At Shell, you are empowered to apply and develop your skills and knowledge as part of a collaborative team that is helping to innovate and play an essential part in building a better energy future
Shell Recognized as Employer of Choice for Gender Equality
Shell Australia an Employer of Choice for Gender Equality since its inception in 2014 by Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA).
This citation is a prestigious acknowledgement of organisations that are recognising and advancing women in the workplace and demonstrates their commitment to maximising the full potential of their entire talent pool.
Commitment to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders
At Shell Australia, we acknowledge that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders are Australia’s First Peoples and the traditional owners and custodians of the land on which we work. Shell Australia is committed to building meaningful relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities based on honesty, integrity and respect.
Shell Australia Supports LGBTI via Kaleidoscope
Shell Australia has established a new employee network, Kaleidoscope, to promote inclusiveness and equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBTI) talent wherever they work regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. Kaleidoscope is set up within a vision towards making Shell Australia being a safe environment for LGBT staff to be out at work. It is vital that we have a strong ally support in the network as it will take great effect on the productivity, retention, engagement, or even mental health in the company.
For further information or to apply visit our website."