The increased focus on digitalization and Industry 4.0—and maybe also the $50 price for a barrel of oil—is causing oil companies to look critically at their workflows to see where breaking down organizational (and data) silos can lead to more efficiency and more importantly, better predictions (of oil reserves in place, of forecast production volumes, of the best way to plan and drill a well, etc.). The promise of new big data technologies means oil companies are willing to take a fresh look at the capabilities of mainstream IT.
The challenge now is for mainstream IT to deliver functionality that meets the needs of the real business of oil and gas. Oil and gas companies (along with many other industrial companies) have been running two separate IT departments for the last couple of decades: the core IT department, which looks after mainstream IT like email and HR and finance systems, and the “value-adding” or competitive IT department, which implements and supports the systems that really run the business of finding and producing oil. Whether sensors and remote control systems (SCADA, DCS, historians) used for production machinery or analyzing data from surveys of the physical environment (seismic surveys, wireline logging) via physics based modeling, the tools and technologies in mainstream IT were simply not up to the task of managing the data and the compute requirements. Competitive IT departments deal with proprietary technologies in application silos, often running on specialized hardware like HPCs, GPU clusters, and large shared memory systems.
Jane McConnell and Paul Ibberson share best practices and lessons learned helping oil companies modernize their data architecture and plan the IT/OT convergence required to benefit from full digitalization.
Jane McConnell is a practice partner for oil and gas within Teradata’s Industrial IoT Group, where she shows oil and gas clients how analytics can provide strategic advantage and business benefits in the multimillions. Jane is also a member of Teradata’s IoT core team, where she sets the strategy and positioning for Teradata’s IoT offerings and works closely with Teradata Labs to influence development of products and services for the industrial space. Originally from an IT background, Jane has also done time with dominant market players such as Landmark and Schlumberger in R&D, product management, consulting, and sales. In one role or another, she has influenced information management projects for most major oil companies across Europe. She chaired the education committee for the European oil industry data management group ECIM, has written for Forbes, and regularly presents internationally at oil industry events. Jane holds a BEng in information systems engineering from Heriot-Watt University in the UK. She is Scottish and has a stereotypical love of single malt whisky.
Paul Ibberson is a senior architect within Teradata’s international ecosystem architecture CoE, where he helps leading organizations to get the most value out of the latest advances in data warehousing and big data landscape. Paul has worked with Teradata technology for over 20 years, covering most aspects of building data warehouses and the broader analytical ecosystem, and has worked with clients from Nordic countries, Benelux, Germany, Austria, Australia, South Africa, and the UK. His previous roles and responsibilities at Teradata have included supporting pre- and postsales activities in the financial services, utilities, oil and gas, and government industries and leading teams to deliver greenfield customer implementations, from shaping requirements to designing, building, and implementing them as services. Paul is a frequent speaker at technical and customer conferences around the world. He holds a BSc in computer science and engineering from Manchester Metropolitan University, UK. He was awarded the Teradata Consulting Excellence Award in 2013.
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