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Accenture explores digital tech impact on Oil & Gas

Working in close collaboration with Microsoft, the company's research noted shorter time for production as key benefit

Accenture explores digital tech impact on Oil & Gas
The survey included responses from over 300 upstream companies across 18 countries.

A newly-released report from Accenture and Microsoft highlighted the key benefits of digital technologies investment for upstream oil & gas firms, which includes streamlined decision-making and faster oil & gas production.

Compiled from the Accenture and Microsoft 2017 Upstream Oil and Gas Digital Trends Survey, which was conducted by PennEnergy Research in partnership with the Oil & Gas Journal, the survey included responses from over 300 upstream companies across 18 countries.

Roughly two-thirds of the survey's respondents saw business value from digital technologies, which 27% totalling it between $50m to $100m for their respective companies. Despite this positive outlook, 14% admitted to not knowing how much monetary value digital is delivering, while 20% do not measure it at all. A mere 4% believe digital adds no value to their business today.

Additional findings showed that the majority of upstream companies expect to see value from digital technologies in the coming years. Seventy-three percent predicted that their oil and gas fields will be fully automated using these technologies within the next five years.

Rich Holsman, who leads Digital in Accenture's Energy industry group, said: "Upstream oil and gas companies are evolving from only using digital technologies in siloes to using these digital technologies and the related new ways of working to transform entire business areas."

He added: "Our survey respondents see big data and analytics, cloud, the Internet of Things (IoT), mobility, high-performance computing (HPC) and cybersecurity as having the greatest potential to transform their businesses. In the next three to five years, 70% plan to spend more or significantly more on digital technologies, and the next wave includes HPC, wearables, robotics, artificial intelligence and blockchain."

Accenture and Microsoft's research also noted the type of digital technologies that upstream companies are investing in. Fifty-six percent have admitted to investing in mobile devices, while 45% are looking into cloud. Another 43% are exploring the adoption of big data and analytics, while 42% are exploring various applications of Internet-of-Things.

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