Operational excellence use rising, but workplace culture remains a challenge

Petrotechnics’ survey reveals operational excellence (OE) has become accepted in the oil and gas industry, but workplace culture remains the single best challenge for increased acceptance.

By Petrotechnics December 19, 2017

Survey findings from Petrotechnics reveal operational excellence (OE) remains central to firms’ enterprise-wide strategies and is now delivering tangible results. For 16%, OE initiatives are already delivering a return on investment (ROI) and, for 10%, it is embedded in the way they work. Nearly all (95%) respondents agree OE requires everyone "From the boardroom to the frontline, to consistently make the most effective operational decisions." Around 60% of respondents said OE has become more important in the last 12 months compared to 80% in the previous year.

Scott Lehmann, VP product management, Petrotechnics, said, "The last year was a significant phase in OE’s evolution as it proved its worth in volatile times. The turbulent oil price put operations to the test and many companies, to their own surprise, weathered the storm and managed to maintain a margin. Now the price has stabilized, firms can focus on applying the same OE measures more widely and to even greater effect. As a result, OE has emerged from the confines of OE departments to become the new enterprise-wide norm."

While industry leaders are delivering ROI, there remains a huge opportunity for many more firms to follow suit. Nearly half of respondents (44%) say OE is a priority and should be the way they run their business while 20% remain even further behind, stating, "Much more needs to be done to achieve OE."

Workplace culture is the single biggest challenge according to 60% of respondents followed by leadership and management (40%) when it comes to implementing OE initiatives. Lehmann said, "OE initiatives require major change across the entire enterprise, affecting numerous roles and the way many individuals work. Inevitably, there will be resistance to change so management has a vital part to play in leading teams through the transition."

On the plus side, nearly half of respondents say their senior leadership team is the most engaged with OE initiatives in their organization. Last year, 92% agreed, "Technology is an enabler for delivering sustainable OE in the hazardous industries."

That sentiment continues this year, with 73% agreeing, "Digitization is helping accelerate our ability to deliver sustainable operational excellence." Lehmann said, "The digital leaders have paved the way for the rest of the industry to follow. They have proved OE’s value and shown the power of technology is achieving ROI. As technology becomes more readily available, many more firms can now adopt it to enhance their OE frameworks and deliver similar and long-term rewards."

Original content can be found at Oil and Gas Engineering.