Opinion: 2023 is the year of Industrial DataOps

By Petteri Vainikka, Cognite

In 2023 oil and gas companies must embrace data-driven tools to run more efficient organizations and showcase climate progress. The early 2020s saw the oil and gas industry through perhaps its most volatile period ever. The path to more solid ground lies in digital transformation. As we kick off 2023, use these data-centered ideas to get there.

Digitalization is dead

Digitalization with a capital D—which is one big effort to digitalize an entire company—has endured as a trend for years. It’s time to take a closer look at the effectiveness of this strategy and optimize it.

We’ve all heard the story before. In 2020 Company X announced a major digitalization initiative. It created a digital platform with all the buzzwords: artificial intelligence, augmented and virtual reality, Industry 4.0, and the Internet of Things. Now in its third year, the initiative has lost steam. All Company X has to show for its attempt is a handful of developed solutions they struggle to scale to the whole company. The solutions exist in a silo used only by IT and the most technically savvy employees.

It’s become clear that the generalized approach isn’t the right way to get data and software into the hands of all our experts. To ensure optimum adoption, digitalization needs to be baked into our everyday work.

In 2023 look deeper than one large case. Consider which smaller projects will bolster individual departments or situations. To do this, think of data as a raw material that needs to be refined by turning it into products that everyone can use. Then build the composable use case applications or look for the expertise you need to make those solutions a reality.

Pledges won’t cut it anymore

Environmental impact reporting is one of the most prominent data-related discussions across the oil and gas industry. Many companies have pledged to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions, but each new climate report has made it clear that the planet can’t wait for “carbon neutral by 2050.”

In November 2022, the 27th Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP27) focused on turning pledges into action. Global expectation has followed, increasing pressure to provide transparent results alongside promises. Odds are you’ve already made ambitious plans to help limit global warming to 1.5 C.

In 2023 companies will need to rely on transparent, data-driven environmental reporting to show their progress and not just pledges.

After a record-breaking profitable end to 2022, oil and gas companies have both financial and technical means at their disposal to provide accurate, real-time, verifiable data and even process-level environmental impact reporting to show real change.

It’s time for change for the sake of change

The pandemic-driven period of mass transition has spurred a powerful and enduring desire for change. Now that attitude is bleeding into initiatives that affect the populace more widely.

The increasing focus on building a sustainable future to combat climate change will affect one of the most radical transformations of our lifetime. This massive sustainable transformation will impact all industries, but legislative and consumer pressure to participate in climate initiatives is particularly strong in the oil and gas industry.

Strategic visionaries will build the industry’s future, especially those embracing new technology and sustainable business practices. In 2023 begin to distance yourself from your peers by reinventing it for the new energy era.

About the author: Petteri Vainikka is Cognite’s chief marketing officer.



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