Energy consultants preach importance of data management


Energy consultants preach importance of data management

By: Sarah Terry-Cobo, The Journal Record

NORMAN, OK – Data management will soon become as important as health and safety for oil and gas companies, Tammy Carter, principal with Noah Consulting, said.

Managing information is critical to finding good places to drill, preparing assets to sell and submitting data to regulatory agencies. Yet data management hasn’t yet reached a tipping point, said James Soos, senior principal with Noah Consulting.

Health and safety eventually became critical to the oil and gas industry when employees could quantify the costs of injuries and fines from regulatory noncompliance, Carter said. Data management will rise to that same importance inside within small and medium-sized drilling companies when the field can quantify the return on investment to the C-suite, Soos said.

Data managers should try pilot projects first to show it is profitable to manage well information or perfect oil and gas lease data prior to a divestiture, he said. When a manager can show executives better information management saves money, the C-suite is more likely to support investing in that software and training, he said.

You have to look for where you can get an early win to show business value,” Soos said.

Soos explained the evolution of the industry subsegment at a Professional Petroleum Data Management Association workshop Tuesday at the National Weather Center in Norman. The nonprofit trade association provides training and certification for data managers, and data management standards for the industry.

Large oil and gas companies have used data management software for decades. ConocoPhillips has been a member of the group since 2008. Employees use software based on PPDM guidance, but it can be difficult to ensure that staff input data the same way because the company is so large and each department may use it differently, said David Fishburn, enterprise data architect at ConocoPhillips.

The best solution is to train people project by project, he said. The company began publishing the latest version of the PPDM software internally so employees could stay up to date on incremental changes. Group members within the company evangelized the latest software version, Fishburn said.

No one knows all the nuances, but as you implement more pieces, you learn more, as an organization,” he said.

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