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Craig Harclerode15 May, 2020

Can your operations quickly pivot to remote support during COVID-19?

To ensure employee safety during these unprecedented times, oil and gas companies had to quickly pivot to a remote support model, with many subject matter experts and engineering staff working remotely to support frontline critical operations.

Some companies were prepared before COVID-19 and stay-at-home orders because they had already started their digital transformation and leveraged digital technologies to evolve their cultures and work processes - including effective virtual/remote support. Other companies were not prepared, being still mired in a diverse, tag-based ecosystem for operational data and struggling to pivot to effective remote workforce support of their frontline operations.

What are the best practices and lessons learned from this new remote operational support model?  What are the top technologies enabling effective and efficient remote operational support, including redesign of work processes?  Are real-time remote operations the “new norm” going forward even when the impact of COVID-19 abates? If not, how will remote support of critical operations change?

This five-part blog series will answer these questions and focus on the role of the modern PI System as a critical operational data infrastructure that provides self-serve access to contextual operational intelligence. The subsequent blogs will sequentially discuss five best practices gleaned from discussions with many oil and gas companies and their COVID-19 response, including:

  1. A strategic journey to move from a tag to asset based ecosystem with abstraction, normalization, contextualization and creation of an “operational chart of accounts”;

  2. Pervasive connectivity with remote assets;

  3. Using a “layers of analytics” strategy including a hybrid data lake approach;

  4. Empowerment of their Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) to configure and evolve digital twins of their physical assets;

  5. Redesigning work processes to integrate a new, digitally enabled work flow that support remote/virtual support;

To learn more about remote oil and gas operations, watch our live webcast on Monday, May 18 (10 a.m. CDT).


Craig HarclerodeGlobal O&G and HPI Industry Principal Craig Harclerode is a Global O&G and HPI Industry Principal at OSIsoft where he consults with companies on how the PI System can add value to their organizations as a strategic operational real-time integration, applications, and analytics infrastructure. Craig's 40 year career has included engineering, operations, and automation in supervisory, executive management, and consultative roles at Amoco Oil, Honeywell IAC, Aspen Tech.
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