BP: Resistance to Change is Biggest Challenge for Digital Oilfield

Resistance to new ways of working represents the biggest challenge to realizing the full potential of the digital oilfield, according to a poll conducted Thursday at the SPE Intelligent Energy International 2012 exhibition in Utrecht. Sixty percent of participants said resistance to change was the biggest issue, while 40 percent thought it was not.

The poll was conducted by BP on the final day of IE2012, which attracted business leaders and senior engineering professionals from across the world.

Under the theme empowered by realtime, BP has posed choices for the next phase in the development of the digital oilfield at IE2012. The company has shared its experience from the ongoing development of its Field of the Future program to discuss the choices, challenges and changes faced by the industry in progressing the application of "Intelligent Energy".

The Field of the Future program was established in BP 10 years ago and routinely supports more than 80 percent of its top producing wells – more than 1 million boe per day of BP net production.

"The development of the digital oilfield has come a long way in a relatively short time, but it still has a long way to go. At BP we believe in the need to develop a digitally focused next generation deep capability to make a strategic shift in how to manage reservoirs and operate fields. The complete realization of the digital oilfield will have a major impact in operations and production," said Steve Robert

“It has to be a concern that IE2012 delegates believed resistance to changing work practices due to new technology could impede that development. We in BP believe that standing still is not a viable option, and that it's our responsibility as an industry to encourage a culture shift and acceptance of the new. Failure to do so will result in a significant loss of opportunity which none of us can afford.”