Reservoir Engineer Salary

Compensation for Reservoir Engineers in the United States is generous, with average pay surpassing six figures annually ($109K). Salaries can reach six figures almost right off the bat; beginning workers who have less than five years' experience bring in a median of $106K per year. On average, Reservoir Engineers make $176K following one to two decades on the job. Reservoir Engineers who have acquired more than 20 years of relevant experience earn significantly more than folks with fewer years on their resumes; the average income in this veteran group is $244K. The data for this synopsis comes from respondents who took the PayScale salary survey.
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$79,520 - $181,415
MEDIAN: $109,135

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
$79,520 - $181,415  
$3,955 - $40,320  
Profit Sharing
$2,443 - $29,087  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
$82,646 - $221,778  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Sep 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 504
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Job Description for Reservoir Engineer

Reservoir engineers are specialists in locating - and helping petroleum companies effectively use - underground reservoirs of fossil fuels. Using geological expertise, knowledge of fluid mechanics, and various forms of technology, the reservoir engineer determines the location of underground fuel reservoirs and their reserve capacities, as well as whether their long-term viability makes them suitable for investment. The reservoir engineer works with geologists to monitor the reserves as fuels are extracted and makes adjustments to extraction processes as geological changes occur with the depletion of the fuel. As easier-to-reach fuel reservoirs are depleted internationally, reservoir engineering increasingly explores new techniques to locate viable drilling spots, and developing and modifying machinery to tap into these spots.


Reservoir Engineer Tasks

  • Draft economic evaluations for all properties and prospects.
  • Coordinate with field production department on well performance and production optimization.
  • Monitor and maintain reserve and decline estimates in order to maximize production for existing properties.
  • Conduct reservoir engineering studies, such as field studies for primary recovery, material balance, and decline curve analysis.

Reservoir Engineer Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for

Dominating the field, Chevron Corporation, British Petroleum (BP), Schlumberger, Occidental Petroleum Corporation, and Shell Oil Company are top firms with a reputation for hiring a great number of Reservoir Engineers. ExxonMobil Corporation offers the largest salaries in town — $170K on average.

Offering a median salary of only $122K, British Petroleum (BP) pays the least. Not only that, but the earnings range of $86K to $247K is pretty narrow, too.

Popular Skills for

Survey results show that Reservoir Engineers use a fair number of skills. Most notably, skills in Business Development, Mergers and Acquisitions, Well Production Engineering, and Strategic Planning are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 4 percent and 6 percent. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include Microsoft Office. Those educated in Reservoir Engineering tend to be well versed in Well Production Engineering.

Pay by Experience Level for

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.

Pay Difference by Location

Bakersfield is home to an above-average pay rate for Reservoir Engineers, 11 percent higher than the national average. Reservoir Engineers will also find cushy salaries in Houston (+4 percent). Smaller cities are not ideal for Reservoir Engineers looking to maximize their earnings. Those in Salt Lake City, Oklahoma City, and Denver — the lowest-paid cities for Reservoir Engineers in the field — deal with compensation below the national average and all have fewer than a million residents. Employers also pay below the national average in Oklahoma City (11 percent lower) and Denver (3 percent lower).

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Experience Affects Salaries

National Average

Skills That Affect Salaries

Business Development
up arrow 6%

Mergers and Acquisitions
up arrow 5%

Well Production Engineering
up arrow 4%

Strategic Planning
up arrow 3%

up arrow 2%

Reservoir Engineering
up arrow 1%

National Average

Microsoft Office
up arrow 9%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 56 votes.


13 %
87 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
1-4 years
5-9 years
10-19 years
20 years or more

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 97% dental benefits Dental: 85%
vision benefits Vision: 74% employee benefits None: 3%