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Tapping the productivity well: Mobile computing for oil, gas & petrochemical companies

Posted by Hannah Moule

December 21, 2017 at 8:56 AM


Even in the petroleum industries, Jean Paul Getty’s recipe for success – rise early, work hard, strike oil – is by no means enough to achieve it. ‘Efficiency, effectiveness, productivity’ isn’t as pithy, but nowadays it’s more apt.

The turmoil of the 2014 oil price crash saw oil, gas and petrochemical companies halve CAPEX and pare back operations. Prices may have stabilised somewhat, but the companies I speak with now are still looking for ways to become more streamlined and able to weather whatever storm comes their way next.

 When it comes to storm-proofing a business, productivity comes up in conversation time and again. After transforming overall operating models, and cutting costs, many have fixed their sights on how they can better support workers – and investing in the right mobile devices could be the answer.

A squeezed workforce

Investment in productivity-boosting tech couldn’t be better timed. Up to 50% of engineers and geophysicists in the sector will be eligible for retirement in 2018, putting pressure on remaining employees. And with current hiring and productivity levels, oil and gas operators will be shy 10,000 to 40,000 petrotechnical professionals by 2025[1].

 Getting less experienced workers up to speed takes time, but easy-to-use mobile devices can do some of the heavy lifting, thanks to on-the-spot communication with colleagues, guided workflows, and powerful enterprise apps. And our mobile devices can enable much more:

  • Live co-ordination: Tasks can be sent direct to engineers out in the field, who can quickly confirm they’re working on the right item by scanning a barcode.
  • Intelligent maintenance: Digital how-to guides can help engineers quickly problem-solve, and they can order parts or schedule follow-up work there and then, making maintenance proactive.
  • Real-time decisions: With barcodes or RFID or NFC tags on everything from vehicles to equipment to workers, you can gain real-time visibility into your operations and make better informed decisions.
  • Improved safety: As well as Push-To-Talk for immediate communication in an emergency, our mobile devices can flag readings that fall outside normal ranges. And you can mandate health and safety checks before applications can be used.

 Plenty have managed just fine with paper and pencil until now, but the need to find a competitive edge puts worker productivity centre stage. However, while productivity is important, it’s obviously not as important as your workers’ safety.

That’s why we’ve partnered with Bartec to engineer a range of mobile devices that are rugged, weather-proof in the extreme, and safe to use in explosive areas (Zone2/Div2 and Zone1/Div1). Purpose-built for harsh environments, this range includes Android products backed by our Mobility DNA suite of enterprise software, helping you drive the most value from your devices, at the least cost.

Whether it’s for work in the warehouse or outside in some of the most demanding locations in the world, this tough technology is ready to work for you, non-stop.

Find out more about how mobile computing can optimise efficiencies in the oil, gas, and petrochemical sectors by reading our solution brief.

[1] Accenture 2017 Talent Well Report


Topics: EMEA, mobile computing