American Oil and Gas Reporter - April 2018 - 44

the experienced workers in the oil and
gas industry today. According to a PricewaterhouseCoopers report, Millennials
at Work: Reshaping the Workplace, approximately 78 percent of millennials are
more effective with technology. In fact,
59 percent of millennials claim an employer providing state-of-the-art technology is important when considering a job.
As digital natives, Millennials have
different goals and expectations about
how technology is used and consumed,
as well as how to solve problems and
make decisions. The next generation expects immediate feedback, flexibility, remote access and digital communication
to drive innovation-all of which is facilitated by technology.
Technology also can lead to increased
productivity across the enterprise, offering
new ways to connect, engage and collaborate with colleagues and managers. According to PwC, many young professionals
actually feel held back by rigid or outdated
working styles.
Consequently, competition for the
corporate leaders of tomorrow will not
be among energy companies alone. Many
other industries will be looking to attract
that same talent also-some of which have
businesses that feature transformed and
modern workplaces and technologies to
appeal to the next generation.
Modern Solutions
Companies that address today's challenges by proactively evolving their culture and technology in tandem see profound benefits. In fact, those that undergo
digital transformation experience a 55
percent average gross margin, compared
with only 37 percent over the same period
for companies that failed to transform,
according to a study by the Harvard
Business Review.
As mentioned previously, there are
four such technologies that help forwardthinking companies adapt to the modern
energy workplace: the cloud, mobile, IoT,
and big data and analytics.
In today's volatile energy industry, the
ability to act quickly on an opportunity to
capture revenue requires streamlined access
to insight, information and computing
power. Speed isn't just a luxury, it often
can be the difference between obtaining
a first-mover advantage and missing out.
The cloud has changed both how we
deliver and consume software. Now and
in the future, we need the flexibility to
quickly adapt existing business applications
and stand-up new services to complement
or supplement where necessary.
The flexibility inherent in cloud-based
solutions can bring companies a variety
of benefits, including:
44 THE AMERICAN OIL & GAS REPORTER

* Scaling operations as needed. Many
cloud applications share computing resources with built-in elasticity, which
helps meet fluctuating market demand
more economically and quickly.
* Breaking down operational silos.
Cloud applications enable easier collaboration across teams and departments,
with everyone driving decisions off the
same centralized information.
* Future-proofing software investment. Cloud applications are easier to
extend by adding new functionality and
interoperating with additional resources.
For instance, the productivity of land
assets is crucial information for decision
makers in the home office, but the field
measurements taken by pumpers and operators historically have been manual, or
siloed, until those data can be uploaded
into legacy software.
Cloud software connects the field to the
back office with on-demand access to information so that up-to-date data are available
for use as a single source of truth. Thus,
the cloud improves efficiency when making
critical connected decisions and performing
standard business processes, from flow optimization to allocations and accounting.
Mobile
Because several core operations along
the energy value chain depend on accurate
and prompt field work, it makes sense
that the technology most commonly adopted by oil and gas companies is mobile.
The reliability of data captured by mobile
technology can make an enormous difference alone, but the ability to immediately store, share or act on those data
further increases the benefits to user efficiency, productivity and collaboration,
leading to improved decision making.
Mobile technology also enhances collaboration between field and office personnel. Seamlessly extending the user experience means that businesses have anytime/anywhere access to crucial information and processes by leveraging the power
and portability of mobile devices. Empowered managers can accelerate decisions
and actions based on near-real-time data.
For example, authorizations for expenditure are a critical and potentially
tedious process during exploration and
production. To properly analyze and optimize capital spending, all primary
stakeholders must have access to reliable,
consistent information, regardless of
their location. Failure to approve an
AFE may result in delaying or even cancelling a proposed drilling project or
subsequent operation.
Making the AFE process mobile not
only makes remote authorization possible,
but it also expedites feedback into the

workflow, which enables continuous improvement.
The Internet Of Things
The Internet of Things refers to internet-connected and enabled devices that
can monitor, store and share data in the
service of faster, more informed decision
making. Based on the potential for significantly greater insights, experts increasingly agree that there are significant
benefits for the energy industry.
In fact, a Cisco study finds that by
fully optimizing available IoT solutions,
an oil and gas company with $50 billion
in annual revenue can increase profits by
nearly $1 billion.
As with cloud and mobile technologies,
some of the benefits provided by IoT
technology are the result of data integrity,
real-time access, and improved visibility
into asset health and performance. In addition to improving decisions, connected
devices automatically can track assets,
inventories and shipments.
For example, operators across the
value chain are discovering that supervisory control and data acquisition systems
have the potential to dramatically improve
on formerly manual or intermittent monitoring of field devices.
IoT technology also can enable remote
alarms and notifications to decrease response times and downtime. These problem-solving improvements are equally
important because being able to spot,
trace and analyze a failure can have a
significant impact on the bottom line.
Big Data Analytics
Energy companies have long produced
copious amounts of data; they now are
turning the page toward monetizing that
data by enabling predictive maintenance,
commodity price arbitrage and production
optimization, to name a few.
Big data and analytics are a host of
various technologies that allow companies
to gather, display and mine their data for
insights that can drive better decisions
and continuous improvement-and ultimately, greater profit.
The continued maturation of these
technologies is part of a macrotrend away
from instinctual decision making toward
data-driven operations. For industries that
traditionally have relied on high levels of
institutional knowledge, this has the potential to feel very disruptive.
Yet, the downsides of continuing to
rely on institutional knowledge are significant. As the business environment
changes with the new workforce, knowledge transfer can be incomplete or problematic. Basing decisions on objective,
verifiable and repeatable data is not only



American Oil and Gas Reporter - April 2018

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of American Oil and Gas Reporter - April 2018

Contents
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