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Reservoir Engineer Salary (United States)

Reservoir Engineers enjoy a hefty income, with average pay passing six figures ($121K) annually in the United States. Even the relatively untested can earn a lot; individuals who have been working for fewer than five years report a median six-figure salary of $107K per year. Reservoir Engineers with one to two decades of relevant experience report an average salary of approximately $177K. Reservoir Engineers who have spent more than 20 years on the job report earning a significantly higher median of $242K. Workers in this area tend to have one to nine years of experience. Experienced employees who have 10-20 years of experience make up roughly one in six of the workforce; inexperienced individuals who have been working for less than one year comprise less than 10 percent, and senior people with more than 20 years under their belt fill out the remaining less than one-tenth. Replies to PayScale's salary questionnaire form the basis for this summary.
Reservoir Engineer Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
$81,647 - $171,010
MEDIAN: $107,284
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National Salary Data

XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
$81,647 - $171,010  
$4,958 - $39,389  
Profit Sharing
$1,931 - $20,226  
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).
$87,263 - $201,773  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 528
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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 Reservoir Engineer

The biggest paychecks can be found at Shell Oil Company — the median salary there is $144K.
Offering a median salary of only $123K, British Petroleum (BP) pays the least. Not only that, but the earnings range of $92K to $252K is pretty narrow, too. Also sliding in at the lower end of the scale is Chevron Corporation.

Popular Skills for Reservoir Engineer

Reservoir Engineers report using a pretty varied skill set on the job. Most notably, skills in Mergers and Acquisitions, Strategic Planning, Business Development, and Reservoir Engineering are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts of 9 percent, 8 percent, 6 percent, and 6 percent, respectively. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Microsoft Office. Most people familiar with Reservoir Engineering also know Well Production Engineering.

Pay by Experience Level for Reservoir Engineer

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

Pay Difference By Location

up arrow 13%
up arrow 2%
National Average
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Oklahoma City
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Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
For Reservoir Engineers, busy Dallas offers a higher-than-average pay rate, 13 percent above the national average. Reservoir Engineers will also find cushy salaries in Houston (+2 percent). With compensation 6 percent below the national average, Oklahoma City is not known for hefty paychecks and actually represents the lowest-paying market.

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Experience Affects Reservoir Engineer Salaries

National Average

Skills That Affect Reservoir Engineer Salaries

Mergers and Acquisitions
up arrow 9%
Business Development
up arrow 6%
Reservoir Engineering
up arrow 4%
Well Production Engineering
up arrow 4%
up arrow 2%
National Average
Microsoft Office
up arrow 4%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied Image
Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5 based on 114 votes.


female alumni
male alumni

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: 98% dental benefits Dental: 88%
vision benefits Vision: 78% employee benefits None: 1%