Digitalization in the energy industry will substantially change engineering functions in the coming years and affect work on both capital projects and operating facilities. The focus of digitalization is not merely on the digital transformation, but on the use of digital technologies to create more value in core businesses while building the appropriate organizational capability and mindset. Underpinning use of digital technologies is the move to data-centric ways of working. This paper examines the preliminary challenges experienced in the move to data-centric ways of working and covers examples in three areas: People, Process and Technology.

Organizations have been digitizing for decades, but the digital revolution is only just beginning. There is mounting evidence that we are approaching a tipping point in the exponential advance of digital technology. However, the foundations on which these aspirations have been built are not that robust. The paper will focus on foundational aspects of the journey that, if done right, can accelerate the value capture of digitalization.

The following are some of the example issues covered in the paper in each area:

People: Restructuring organizational competencies, cultural change management and recognition and management of the generational continuum associated with the workforce.

Process: Complexity of project delivery across multiple organizations in the supply chain, the move from documents to data, and impact on business models that deliver document-based content.

Technology: Data standards and handover or transfer protocols, federated data repositories, plug-and-play tool integration and tool agnostic IT solutions.

The conclusion is a call-to-arms directed at the entire energy Industry, i.e., operators, EPCs, suppliers, construction firms, regulators, standards bodies, etc. to collaborate and set a robust foundation that is data-centric to accelerate the digitalization revolution.

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