Alpha Software Blog

Digital Transformation: The Cure for Oil & Gas Field Services

Oil companies needn't suffer from declining oil prices. Experts say the solution lies in digital technology.Over the last five years, the oil and gas field services industry has hit hard times, as oil prices plummeted and never quite recovered. IBISWorld calculates that oil and gas field service industry revenue has declined by 10 percent in the last five years, and is expected to be approximately $75 billion in 2019. The number of businesses over that time has declined by 2.1 percent and the number of employees is down by three percent, IBISWorld says.

Recent Challenges in Oil and Gas 

The Houston Chronicle’s article, “Oilfield services companies face another tough slog,” portrays the dire straits the industry is in. It reports, “Energy services companies are facing another tough slog as they recover from a deep industry downturn that piled up billions of dollars in red ink and cost tens of thousands of jobs…Despite record oil and natural gas production in the United States, the stock prices of Schlumberger, the world’s biggest energy services company, and Halliburton, number two, have fallen to about half of what they were a year ago. The share price of number three Baker Hughes is down by more than one-third.”

All this is happening when the oil and gas field services industry should be booming because of the dramatic increase in oil and gas production in the United States, says Ben Carey, a managing director with the Houston office of energy strategy and consulting firm Accenture. He told the newspaper, “Given increasing production in service-intensive U.S. shale plays, it should be the golden era for service companies. But it’s not.”

The reason? The newspaper reports, “Services companies are particularly sensitive to swings in oil prices. When crude prices fall, one of the first places oil and gas producers turn to cut costs are energy services.”

The Solution? Digital Technology

However, it needn’t be that way. Carey says that a solution is close at hand for the oil and gas field services industry — use digital technology to increase automation, collaborate better, collect massive amounts of drilling information and other data from sensors, and analyze the data. He says that would increase efficiency, cut costs and boost profits.

“A business model change like that will change a zero sum game to a win-win,” he concludes.

The Best Technology for the Oil and Gas Field Services Industry

Oil and gas field services companies need to find a platform that can help them build the tools to do all that. An ideal one is Alpha TransForm. It lets oil and gas services companies build applications that tie the field directly to back office operations, improve logistics, streamline inspections and dramatically improve data capture.

It has the unique ability to rapidly create mobile-optimized forms and field apps that can easily access and integrate with existing databases and web services. It builds offline apps, vital for the oil and gas industry, and excels at mobile apps for field workers.

Learn how Alpha Software is helping oil and gas customers or try our pumpjack inspection app.


Additional Reading:

Find out how mobile apps can help rejuvenate the oil and gas industry.

Read about why oil and gas CIOs need to embrace digital transformation.

Read why sensors will fuel the age of smart everything.

Alpha Solutions for Oil and Gas

Powerful Data Capture Apps for Inspectors, Exploration or Production Teams

Safety Inspections  •  Pipeline Inspections  •  Gemba Walks  •  Platform Audits  •  Certifications and Training    
Pumpjack Inspections  •  Work Orders •  Time and Attendance  •  ISO Certifications   
Dispatch  •  Licensing  •  and more,,,

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About Author

Amy Groden-Morrison
Amy Groden-Morrison

Amy Groden-Morrison has served more than 15 years in marketing communications leadership roles at companies such as TIBCO Software, RSA Security and Ziff-Davis. Most recently she was responsible for developing marketing programs that helped achieve 30%+ annual growth rate for analytics products at a $1Bil, NASDAQ-listed business integration Software Company. Her past accomplishments include establishing the first co-branded technology program with CNN, launching an events company on the NYSE, rebranding a NASDAQ-listed company amid a crisis, and positioning and marketing a Boston-area startup for successful acquisition. Amy currently serves as a Healthbox Accelerator Program Mentor, Marketing Committee Lead for the MIT Enterprise Forum of Cambridge Launch Smart Clinics, and on the organizing team for Boston TechJam. She holds an MBA from Northeastern University.

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The Alpha platform is the only unified mobile and web app development and deployment environment with distinct “no-code” and “low-code” components. Using the Alpha TransForm no-code product, business users and developers can take full advantage of all the capabilities of the smartphone to turn any form into a mobile app in minutes, and power users can add advanced app functionality with Alpha TransForm's built-in programming language. IT developers can use the Alpha Anywhere low-code environment to develop complex web or mobile business apps from scratch, integrate data with existing systems of record and workflows (including data collected via Alpha TransForm), and add additional security or authentication requirements to protect corporate data.