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Executing an oil and gas project on schedule and budget requires a solid foundation of planning. This is no secret.

But for too long, project teams have labored in less than ideal conditions. They’ve long been handicapped by the lack of readily accessible information. Certain documents exist solely – or mostly – on paper, which can further be complicated as new versions of documents are created.

Access to other materials might be restricted by the company.

In fact, Forrester Research has estimated that somewhere between 60% and 73% of data that an enterprise has is not available to the right people for use in making decisions because that data exists in documents, spreadsheets and various backend systems.

As much as collaboration is a goal, navigating information-sharing environments can be difficult and impede the planning cycle. Delays become inevitable. And worse, a persistent norm within the culture that undermines management’s attempts to improve productivity and drive cost efficiency.

It’s been said that project teams may spend as much as two-thirds of their time gathering data and information from a huge number of sources and the scant remainder of their work time acting on the data and planning.

However, a team creating a project plan could significantly accelerate their planning time simply by relying on a single digitized platform in the cloud. A digital platform creates an environment that helps streamline the work, re-work and approvals process.

The upside of using a single digitized platform is more than saving time by making sure the right people have access to the right information when they need it. It means better decisions can be made because team members will have access to the most current analysis and data.

And once the project planning is complete, the information can be updated as maintenance and upgrades occur. The entire digital library of documents for a project can be referred to as the digital twin. Real-time data from Internet of Things-capable sensors can feed into the digital twin to guide decision-making as needed.

Digitization is here. It’s not a concept. But some companies are reluctant to embrace the technology. Of course, some of that is the human’s knee-jerk aversion to change, but there are some potential perceived barriers to success with digitization.

A lack of standards in sensor data reporting can make it difficult to share information across the ecosystem, but such standards are being developed.
Another potential barrier to a company embracing digitization is concern about security breaches in the cloud. However, information stored in the cloud is fundamentally more secure. According to David Linthicum, the chief cloud strategy officer at Deloitte Consulting, there are far fewer attacks on cloud environments than those aimed at on-premises environments.

By opening up to digitization, companies would be able to make decisions based on real-time 3D visualizations of projects. They’d be able to prevent scheduling problems because issues would be more apparent with all the information available in one central repository.

The availability of information would nurture the ability to collaborate across the board, boost knowledge sharing, and improve the quality of communications. The ultimate results for the user are cost savings, reduced time to market, improved operability, and tighter risk management.

Some companies – and woke individuals within – will rightly see the opportunity of early adoption of digital workflows and the risk of being slow to challenge perceived barriers. The less brave will answer for their hesitation – to management, their boards and most certainly to the investors that abandon them for the forward-thinking peer companies whose choice to digitize and train their workforces raised the bar for performance forever.

Ready to get real about breaking down perceived barriers and move your company into the future? Contact us today, and let us help you get your future on.