Optimizing IIoT Value in Oil & Gas with IT-OT Alignment
There is a popular saying that if you want to go quickly, go alone, but if you want to go far, go together. These wise words are particularly applicable in the oil and gas (O&G) industry, where effective production requires the precise coordination of a variety of moving parts. But, historically speaking, this mantra has not extended across the full breadth of industrial operations. In particular, information technology (IT) and operational technology (OT) teams have traditionally worked largely independently of one another – though exceptions do exist.
Now, technological advances are disrupting the status quo. The rise of digital transformation initiatives – specifically Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) projects – is forcing O&G operators to rethink conventional, siloed operations. Thanks to IIoT, operational data is more accessible than ever, presenting a massive potential value in the form of opportunities for businesses to gain unprecedented clarity into operations to enhance decision-making, efficiency, and performance. Amplified by intense competition and the harsh realities of economic and regulatory demands, the allure of these benefits is driving worldwide IIoT spending to an estimated $772 billion in 2018 as businesses search for an edge.
But it’s not as simple as just installing equipment sensors and upgrading software. Effectively deploying IIoT in an industrial environment is a very complex undertaking that requires a careful, strategic approach. And even then, there is intense pressure to demonstrate return on investment (ROI) in short order and continue scaling across operations to maintain a competitive edge. Achieving maximum benefit in the least amount of time takes coordination and cooperation across multiple departments, and bringing IT and OT together is a critical step.