Digitalization instills confusion in many small and medium-sized oil field service companies. While all of the major players in the industry are singing the digitization song, smaller companies do not know what it means for them. Major businesses are putting a lot of pressure on the small service companies to participate digitally in the supply chain. Following are the three significant challenges for such companies:
These factors make automating the data gathering and distributing from the field equipment/personnel to the supply chain a continual challenge. Let us discuss each one of these challenges in more detail.
Large oil and gas companies are quickly converting themselves into technology companies. However, smaller companies cannot spend the needed money to acquire the necessary information technology skills. People that hold an understanding of information technology with skillsets in data acquisition, big data handling, and workflow automation are in high demand and often require heaftier salaries. Therefore, obtaining these skillsets requires larger budgets.
Most of the small to medium oil field service companies struggle with in-house skillsets in the area of instrumentation and automation. Finding the relevant sensors and the associated equipment that can survive harsh oil field conditions can be a tough and expensive affair. While many instrumentation and automation technology integrators can put in sensors that might transfer the data from the field to a cloud data broker, they often cannot help in effectively distributing the data. This dilemma leaves a disconnect between the supply chain including the back office, field personnel, and suppliers.
Often, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software and accounting system companies tout their field service offerings to all of their customers. However, it is hard for companies to evaluate and understand the functionality fully. Often, the modules being offered may be limited in functionality and not able to meet the requirements of a company. For example, a company might need an easy-to-use field data gathering interface for field personnel. To truly realize the digital oil field service experience, it is essential to adopt a vertical field service management solution specifically built for oil and gas.
We are seeing increasing interest among oil field service companies for technology adoption. These companies are looking to run leaner operations and better connect with their clients. Keep a watch for more blogs on this topic, where we unfold the complex issue of oil field service digitization and solutions to support such transformations.
About the Author
Prat Gupta, Ph.D.
Prat is a visionary software architect, investor, and entrepreneur who founded different companies under the Bursys Group portfolio. Since 2005, Bursys Group has expanded operations to North America, Europe, and Asia. Bursys Group has developed and launched FieldEquip, an innovative connected field service platform that brings machine learning and artificial intelligence to solve real-world field service automation problems. Serving on various company boards, Prat loves to engage with innovative & challenging startups. He’s always ready to fund a promising idea.