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This paper discusses the way in which an Affiliate of a major oil corporation is meeting the challenges and economic realities facing our industry in the current increasingly competitive and unstable environment.
The cultural change programme, which began in 1988, and is ongoing, is described in some detail. There have been three distinct phases in this programme and each is discussed, with most attention being focused on the current phase of development towards a High Performance Organisation.
The results of each phase of the programme, and some of the lessons learnt, are presented in the hope that they might provide some direction for others.
"The world is changing." How often have you heard that said, and how the it is, especially in the business world. Organisations that are able to manage change will thrive and those which aren't will disappear.
In 1987 Mobil Corporation's E&P Division made a commitment to change its business culture. Business culture is defined as the pattern of beliefs, values and expectations shared by the people working in a company. The Division made this commitment because it believed it to be essential if it was to achieve the corporate vision "To Be The Best".
Mobil North Sea Ltd. (MNSL) is the Affiliate with responsibility for E&P operations in the U.K sector of the North Sea. Each E&P Affiliate was charged with developing and managing its own culture change programme, and we began work in earnest in 1988. The first stage in the change process was to obtain a clear picture of "what we are now, and what we want to become." A series of employee culture surveys and workshops was used to provide the answer to these questions. This change initiative was introduced as "New Culture."
Following these self-awareness and direction setting sessions a second stage change strategy was adopted. This initiative was launched under the acronym SCRIPT, which identified those behaviours and practices that were essential if the company was to remain competitive. SCRIPT stands for: Strategy and core business; Communication; Recognition; Innovation; Participation; and Teamwork.
SCRIPT remained at the core of our culture change programme until 1992, at which time the E&P Division's High Performance Organisation (HPO) initiative was launched. This was to be the way in which the company would build on the SCRIPT programme and begin to introduce the principles of Total Quality Management (TQM). Again each Affiliate was given responsibility for developing the way in which it would manage this initiative. MNSL launched its HPO initiative in 1993, and has committed significant resources to its implementation since that time.
A BRIEF OVERVIEW OF THE QUALITY MOVEMENT
It is generally accepted that the modern quality movement had its beginnings in the Bell Telephone laboratories in the nineteen twenties and thirties. At this time Walter A. Shewhart, a statistician, developed techniques to bring industrial processes under "statistical control." Using these techniques workers could be trained to monitor and chart the processes they were working on, and with set highs and lows, make adjustments to bring them back into control. The essential elements of these control techniques are contained in the PLAN; DO; CHECK; ACT; (PDCA) cycle, often called the Shewhart Wheel.
Abstract In this paper we will discuss if and how experiences from designing a robust emergency preparedness organisation (a requirement in Norwegian regulations) can be of use in a wider context. We will further describe the background for the requirement in the regulation and the relevance for normal operations. We will also describe some of the characteristics of a robust organization using insights from relevant R&D projects and lessons learned from accidents. We will use a practical case study from a second line emergency preparedness organization in Norsk Agip. The experience gained in Norsk Agip is that to a certain degree it is possible to design robustness into an emergency preparedness organization. Since this is a small organization, long lasting emergency situations represent a challenge. Introduction/Background The pace of change in the petroleum industry is increasing due to improvements in technology and business processes etc. To take part in and also to some extent control these changes, a proactive and failure tolerant organization, e.g. a robust organization is essential. Norsk Agip has been granted exploration licenses on the Norwegian Continental Shelf. In order to prove hydrocarbons, exploration wells have to be drilled. In this connection also an emergency preparedness system and emergency preparedness organization have to be established. This paper is based on experience from designing the second line emergency preparedness organization in Norsk Agip. In chapter 2 the concept of robust organisations is explained. In chap 3 the case study from Norsk Agip is presented. In chapter 4 the lessons learned are discussed. In chapter 5 the relevance of the consept of robust organisation for normal operations. The Concept of Robust and Failure Tolerant Organizations Insights from R&D projects The perspective in the eighties was often that "the system is safe enough, man is the problem". After the Three Mile Island accident in a nuclear power plant that occurred on 28 March 1978, where two separate maintenance problems were implicated, man/machine interaction was identified as one of the major problems. A current perspective is that man may create problems, but is also able to detect problems and regain control. Man is seen as a resource, not a problem. This also came as experience from another major accident, Piper Alpha, where leaders of the emergency organization were incapacitated and the decision-making processes broke down. To create "high reliability organizations" where no single failure would cause disaster the Man Technology Organization (MTO) perspective has developed over the years. Different industries have been engaged in addressing the influence of organisational and human factors on safety. NASA developed a MTO methodology called HPES (Human Performance Enhancement System) in order to systematically analyse the interactions between man, technology and organization during accidents. This methodology was used when analysing the Challenger accident. The MTO perspective has also been used by the nuclear industry since the late 80's. The Norwegian oil industry has in the last few years had increased focus on the development of investigation methods based on the MTO perspective. This focus was also enhanced when the regulatory authorities outlined requirements in the new petroleum regulations for the use of a MTO perspective during investigation of situations of hazard and accident. The MTO perspective is based on the philosophy that most accidents are caused by complex chains of events in which man, technology and organization reciprocally affect each other. In order to prevent accidents, one has to identify underlying human, organizational and technological causes. These underlying (root) causes have historically proven to be a combination of deficiencies in organisational systems, lack of competence and training, safety culture, ergonomics and technology.
INTEGRATING R&D WITH THE BUSINESS-A SHELL PERSPECTIVE John A. Eyre, General Manager, Product Development, Shell International Oil Products, Shell Centre, York Road, London, U.K. Abstract. In early 1996, Shell overhauled its central service company organisation. The old `Matrix' structure was effective but complex, consisting of business sector co-ordinations, cross-business support functions and regional shareholder organisations. The Research and Development Co-ordination served all the businesses and reported direct to a Group Managing Director. The re-organisation simplified the structure by creating four new business organisations-Exploration & Production, Oil Products, Chemicals and Gas & Coal. Each of the old business sectors formed the basis of one of the new businesses. Some of the support co-ordinations, including that for R&D, were split, resources being incorporated into the relevant businesses, while others were established as professional, stand-alone units that continued to provide services to all the businesses. The paper reviews the practical steps that were taken to establish the new structure and identifies the lessons learned during the transition. Strengths and weaknesses of the two approaches to R&D are highlighted with emphasis on Shell's Oil Products business. The features favouring a co-ordinated R&D structure are principally those associated with benefits of scale and breadth of experience-critical mass and synergy of skill pools particularly in supporting and enabling activities, sharing best practices, wider opportunities for R&D staff development, representation at highest management level etc. Those that favour incorporation into the business arise from improved commerciai focus-commonality of business goals, faster implementation of technology in the market place, enhanced trust and understanding with business partners, etc. On balance, for a commercial R&D organisation, particularly one concerned primarily with incremental R&D focused tightly on core businesses, the benefits of closer ties to the business should more than compensate for the losses that arise through lack of overall co-ordination. However, careful planning prior to and during the transition is essential to ensure that these benefits are realised quickly, that disruption to the on-going R&D programmes is minimised, and that the downsides arising from the elimination of the central co-ordinating role are effectively managed. REORGANISATION Shell has recently undertaken a major review and restructuring of its central organisation which has changed the way in which R&D is carried out in the Group. Previously, the Shell Group was character- ised by a matrix of local operating companies, business organisations that covered all sectors in a given geographic region, and service companies com- prising both business sector and corporate functions (Fig. 1). Within this framework, Research was a separate, corporate function which carrie
If the oil and gas industry is to become more efficient as well as effective the synergies that exist in the business as a whole have to be exploited more successfully. To achieve this, there is a need for a radical change in the roles and responsibilities of oil companies and contractors.
This paper proposes a new approach to gaining greater benefit from exploiting supply management synergies. The approach is based upon the concepts of integrated contracted services and outsourcing of non-core activities. It involves the creation of groups of oil companies to obtain goods and services from the market place through common supply management organisations.
For instance, in the part of the chain that runs from exploration to the crude oil commodity market, it appears that most regard the core activity as discovering the reserves in the first place. Having created value by finding oil and gas in commercial quantities, the challenge is to prevent people, whether contractors' or the oil companies own staff, from absorbing more of this value than the minimum required to get the product to market.
Oil companies have traditionally sought to command the whole chain of activities from exploring for oil to retailing petrol. Given the evidence of successful companies, this range of control is the significant factor in building shareholder value. It is less clear that such companies need themselves to actually carry out all the activities required to make this possible; a vast infrastructure of supporting service and contracting companies suggests that they do not.
With high prices and a high rate of opportunity to find large discoveries, as in former times in the UKCS, the best strategy has seemed reasonably clear.
Abstract A Subsurface and Wells Emergency Response Organization (ERO) Portal has been developed to provide European subsurface and wells emergency response duty team personnel with immediate access to a critical, trusted subsurface and wells data set. The rapid availability of such a data set is linked to the speed and efficiency of the overall wellsite emergency response procedure. The ERO Portal is a web based application. It is a simple and easy to use one-stop-shop that provides the subsurface and wells emergency response duty teams with access to 21 critical, high quality data types at field, well and wellbore level. The data types have been selected to provide a holistic understanding of the status of the assets (wellbores, wells, fields or Assets (groups of fields)), thereby enabling a highly informed emergency response based on the conditions of the assets involved. The ERO Portal not only provides access to the 21 critical data types but differs from conventional data retrieval portals in that it indicates the availability or absence of each data type – thus saving time in the data gathering process. The user friendly home page connects to quality checked, published corporate data held and managed within corporate data stores. On and offline back-up systems have also been developed to ensure full data availability at all times and duty team personnel are trained in how to use the tool. The sustainability of the ERO Portal involves continual input from a number of teams throughout the year to ensure that data is quality checked and published in a timely manner into the corporate databases, that duty team personnel are trained in its use and that the IT technology is working at all times. However, there is no question that the investment in this tool is essential. The ERO Portal is significant in that it offers an example of how providing a critical, trusted and quality checked data set from a single source in the event of a wellsite emergency can prove a vital step in a timely and well informed response to a wellsite emergency.