The energy industry has been a little slow to adopt cloud computing and digital transformation, but they’re slowly starting to catch on. It not only helps reduce their costs, but it speeds up their operations, helps them get data in real-time, and even reduces fraud.
Things happen quickly in the cloud, and speed is priceless in this industry. A recent report from Accenture found that energy executives view reduced costs as merely a secondary benefit — they mostly want to harness the cloud to speed up operations. In oil and gas, timely data transmission is critical to operators. Cloud technologies allow for the transfer of data at unprecedented speed and scale, whether it comes from field measurement instruments/flow, land titles/contracts, or regulatory documentation.
We’ve talked about this in the past: digital capabilities allow oil companies to receive their run ticket data immediately, which can help prevent millions of dollars of loss due to mistakes and theft.
While that falls within the “merely a secondary” benefit, 1) millions of dollars is nothing to sneeze at, and 2) the benefit happens because energy executives can see the measurements from their instruments and flow rates on dashboards that can alert them whenever there’s a problem.
According to Dawkins, there are several improvements that energy companies already-switched companies are starting to see. They’re not just lowering costs, they’re recovering lost revenue, protecting their IP, and improving productivity.
Imagine being able to see transfer rates based on run ticket data that was entered into the system minutes ago, rather than 7 – 10 days ago. Imagine being able to monitor flow and yield rates on your various wells: An automated process can validate the information and give you an up-to-the-minute look at your volumes and revenues for the day.
But don’t overlook integration. Once you start your digital migration, you’re going to have to develop systems for your outside partners to be able to move with you. Can your vendors, contractors, and drivers all go digital with you? Dawkins says that “unless you want to lose them, you’ll need to help them understand how existing workflows will change and how your company will navigate that change.”
Of course, it may be in your best business interests to work with partners who have already embraced the cloud and completed — or are currently undertaking — a digital transformation. These digital partners can help you complete your own transition more effectively, and help you avoid some of the problems and pitfalls that they overcame in their own journey.
Ultimately, having a fully integrated single database cloud solution will not only improve efficiencies but also provide meaningful outsourced-IT services, alternative accessibility options, and cost-saving solutions. To capture those benefits without completely overhauling your existing business model, you’ll have to ensure that your partners and their products will be seamlessly integrated into your post-adoption workflows.
Photo credit: Jeffrey Beall (Wikimedia Commons, Creative Commons 4.0)