Upstream Companies Expect Shorter Time to Produce Oil and Gas Due to Digital Technology Investments, Finds New Research from Accenture and MicrosoftSource: Business Wire
Almost two-thirds of upstream firms see the value digital technologies deliver as low oil prices linger, and the top risk of a lack of digital investment is becoming uncompetitive
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(Graphic: Business Wire)
Asked to identify the top ways digital benefits their companies, faster and better decision-making (30 percent) remained foremost, as in the 2016 edition of the survey. Faster time to produce oil and gas, however, jumped to second place from fifth last year (19 percent). Reduced risk enabled by real-time decision support was the third most important (12 percent).
Now in its sixth edition, the global survey showed the upstream areas most expected to benefit today from digital are production (28 percent), geological and geophysical (27 percent), and drilling and completion (19 percent).
Almost two-thirds (62 percent) of the more than 300 professionals
surveyed perceive business value from digital technologies, with 27
percent totalling it at
Most of the respondents expect their companies to realize value from digital technologies and 73 percent said most of their oil and gas fields will become fully automated using these technologies in three to five years.
On the other hand, 39 percent of respondents said the greatest risk from a lack of digital investment is becoming uncompetitive; more than double the next group at 19 percent who cited the inability to transition to a new energy landscape. Surprisingly, despite the rise of connected devices on oilfields further exposing upstream companies to cybersecurity risks, the fear of increased cyberattacks came in at a distant third (18 percent).
“Upstream oil and gas companies are evolving from only using digital
technologies in siloes to using these digital technologies and the
related new ways of working to transform entire business areas,” said
Digital technologies that upstream companies are investing in today include mobile devices (56 percent), cloud (45 percent), big data and analytics (43 percent) and IoT (42 percent). Priority investment areas for these technologies are asset management and maintenance, capital project management and production optimization.
“It’s not always about petabytes of data. It’s about a set of solutions
and technologies that could not have been achieved even five years ago,”
Upstream companies are also now adding digital workforce challenges to their ongoing talent concerns. Recruitment is their biggest challenge in this regard, especially skill-building for contingent labor, freelancers and onboarding new hires. Most said it will take three to five years to build the necessary digital skill base. For example, the great majority of respondents (85 percent) felt their companies lacked fully mature analytics capabilities. While they plan to develop that area, the expected three-to-five-year time frame in which they aim to do that might be too extended - competitively speaking - as technologies advance rapidly. This is especially relevant, as an Accenture Strategy study, The Talent Well Has Run Dry, notes the oil and gas industry could experience a shortage of 10,000 to 40,000 petro-technical professionals by 2025.
About the survey
Accenture Digital, comprised of Accenture Analytics,