Many Oil and Gas (O&G) businesses are realizing that in order to improve operational efficiencies they will need to utilize digital solutions for every-day tasks. Cloud and mobile technologies are helping businesses quickly adopt digital solutions for field applications. Digital solutions on site are becoming an integral part of a worker’s routine and are helping companies provide a safer work environment for staff. Here’s how?
In the field, safety and efficiency are an O&G business’s best friend. In regards to safety, digital solutions, like GE’s Smart Helmet technology for field service engineers, are helping hazardous area field workers perform at a higher level while adhering to or surpassing safety regulations. Wait just a tick… a helmet is a digital tool? Yes! Helmets are now easily equipped with mobile computers that can access the cloud to quickly pull up safety procedures during an incident. Not only will the helmet protect the worker, the equipped heads-up-display and camera will give the worker necessary instructions or schematics of the site to quickly “put out the fire.” Furnishing digital tools on a safety device will benefit both the company trying to achieve better workplace safety, and the employee also seeking improved safety and better connectivity with remote support staff.
Digital tools have come a long way from offering simple image capture and note-taking capabilities to fully integrated technologies that can do things like track tool uptime data in real time. Efficiency is improved by giving businesses an inside look of the worksite along with tool data. An article in January’s Subsea & Offshore Magazine on digital solutions benefits explained that mobile devices, smartphones, tablets or handheld computers, empower “the mobile worker” and allow the employee to “retrieve current information about the status of machines or their parts on the screen of their device.” When a field worker can be notified immediately when a tool is malfunctioning, he or she can then quickly address the issue, improving efficiency at the site. Remote employees can send repair procedures via mobile devices to speed up maintenance or repair processes. Digital solutions that provide real-time data help businesses improve maintenance procedures, reduce downtime, and improve overall efficiency at the workplace.
Safety and efficiency are two major factors for a successful O&G business and digital solutions are now ready to tackle the industries toughest tasks. The industry is inherently dirty and can be dangerous at many points in the well life cycle. Digital solutions, like smart helmets, help relieve safety concerns by empowering field workers with improved safety technology. Operational efficiencies are improved by giving workers the necessary data to analyze and determine which tools are not performing at their intended levels. Digital solutions are slowly becoming the key differentiator to help businesses improve operational efficiencies while also improving workplace safety.