BCG: Big Oil, Big Data, Big Value - August 2019 - eng

Пятница, 20 сентября 2019 21:55

It’s no secret that these are tough times for the oil and gas industry. In the four years following oil’s steep drop in 2014, price volatility grew 12%. Alternative forms of energy are becoming increasingly popular, and the price of a barrel of oil remains low. In the face of these chal­lenges, oil and gas companies are implementing digital technologies to drive efficiency throughout the value chain and become more resilient. But success has been limited. One key reason that is often overlooked: an inability to fully leverage data.

The IT systems at most oil and gas companies include a multitude of legacy software applications purchased from various vendors in different formats across many different functions. The inflexible architecture of these systems often makes the underlying data inaccessible. In addition, the industry has failed to maintain a strong focus on data quality. Companies have preferred to give each function the flexibility to store data in whatever way it finds most useful and to use the data formats provided by vendors. This has made it difficult to build repeatable use cases or to combine data in cross-functional use cases. Compounding these challenges, the IT organization is ­often set up to provide solutions tailored for individual functions rather than for use across the value chain.

To take full advantage of their data and develop the digital capabilities critical for competitive advantage, companies need to build a central platform that includes a data warehouse, a data lake, or both. This approach will make data easier to find and analyze and will aid in the development of digital solutions that deliver value. It will also centralize data governance, allowing for a cross-functional perspective and making it easier to provide the guidance necessary for ensuring data availability, quality, and security for the entire organization. A few oil and gas companies are already seeing the benefits of data platforms. One international oil company, for example, credited its platform investments with annual cost savings of $7 billion over a recent three-year period.

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