With fluctuating oil prices, the year remains ambiguous and challenging for the petroleum industry. Especially when you consider the pressure to reduce costs and increase operational efficiency. Companies have been forced to shift operations, and in some cases, quickly make drastic workforce cuts to remain competitive. In addition, organizations have been acquiring companies that are extremely efficient so they can learn and leverage these best practices.
However, markets will stabilize and recover, and organizations will ramp up production again while scaling these new efficiencies. Deloitte recently stated that “the most stable strategy is to be a low-cost producer.” The petroleum industry will increasingly need to look at ways to maximize existing resources to continue the momentum they’ve gained with lean operating strategies.
One of the best ways for the industry to do this is through technology solutions that understand and adapt to their unique ways of operating. SchedulePro works closely with the petroleum industry and has identified the key oil and gas trends for 2018:
Trend #1: Reducing costs with workforce optimization
According to Deloitte, there is the potential to save millions in operating costs at almost every oil and gas organization. It’s simply a matter of understanding which solution will result in the most savings, within the shortest amount of time. Employee scheduling solutions are often overlooked as ways to gain quick wins and provide tangible ROI in a short timeframe.
For example, SchedulePro currently has pilot projects with multiple enterprise organizations in the first months of 2018. The goals of the different pilots may vary, but they share many commonalities. In addition to testing out the functionality to handle complex scheduling scenarios, customers are also measuring the solution’s ROI.
For one multinational petrochemical organization, they deployed SchedulePro to test if they could save approximately $1.5M in operational efficiencies in the first year of usage at just one location. Pilot projects position organizations to be ready for a fast, full-scale rollout once this initial testing period ends.
Trend #2: Smarter decision making with predictive analytics and digitalization
With rapid shifts in the oil market, companies who can predict and plan for these changes will be best positioned to respond quickly. Companies who are slow to adapt to this changing environment will face challenges to react and have competition move past them. Organizations now need to be agile in a traditionally slow moving industry.
Solutions that provide advanced analytics and deep insights will help organizations better forecast and predict future outcomes based on historical data. For the oil and gas industry, this could help companies save time, reduce labour costs and drive smarter decision making. These predictive analytics will optimize resources, improve supply chains, streamline operations and ultimately maximize throughput efficiency for organizations.
Digitalization and digital transformation are enabling organizations to develop a sustainable model for Operational Excellence. A recent survey published in World Oil magazine had the “respondents praise the benefits that digitalization is bringing to operations.” The two areas showing the biggest impacts? Enhanced KPIs / metrics (51%) and improved prioritization and planning (49%).
As digitalization increases, the amount of data available to organizations will enable greater insights into the business and increase decision making capabilities throughout the company. Add in the benefits of machine learning and artificial intelligence, and you can better drive decision making with data-informed strategies. However, there is a concern whether all this data causes ‘paralysis by analysis’ due to the steep learning curve.
SchedulePro is advancing the depth of analytics available for executives and end users. In the first major functionality release of 2018, SchedulePro is enabling data-informed decisions through the use of its simple analytics module that brings visibility to where your scheduling goals are today versus where you want them to be. And it provides recommendations on how to close that gap.
Trend #3: Secure anytime, anywhere access with cloud computing
While cloud computing has been quickly embraced by consumers (eg. Apple iCloud), organizations have been hesitant to fully adopt cloud-based software due to security concerns. However, cloud computing for enterprises is equally secure thanks to services such as Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services. Cloud computing allows companies to access information anytime and anywhere, so they can make informed decisions instantly.
As companies embrace the cloud, they are realizing the benefits of being able to collaborate with other global locations in real time. By replacing slow, manual processes with more efficient workflows using SaaS (Software As A Service) solutions, organizations are also empowering employees to be more involved in decision making and operational improvements. This in turn, provides faster realization and helps companies to lower costs and improve their bottom line in less time.
SchedulePro is a SaaS solution that can be securely hosted on Microsoft Azure, where the majority of oil and gas industry hosts their solutions in the cloud.*
Whether it’s reducing costs, predicting future business outcomes or leveraging the benefits of cloud computing, 2018 is an exciting year for the oil and gas industry. Despite the discussions on renewable energy, the traditional petroleum industry has a massive opportunity to remain competitive against these alternatives, if organizations continue to invest in modernizing their businesses.
Want to find out how SchedulePro can help your oil and gas company capitalize on these 2018 trends? Contact us for more info or a demo tailored to your business.