E-business in the upstream oil and gas industry is becoming increasingly strategic. While E&P companies are not yet buying a large percentage of their goods online, momentum to do so is building as E&P companies move beyond simple Web-based self-service applications toward Internet-aided information gathering and participation in true collaborative electronic interaction and relationships with service companies. Concomitantly, service companies are designing interrelated e-business strategies that focus on customer relationships, resource planning, order management, and supply chains.

Rather than a totally different, more complex way of doing business, as some fear, e-business is a more effective way of doing business as usual. E-business integrates and extends conventional business process strategies through the convergence of computing, networking, and communications technologies. It enables new and more efficient models of business interaction and streamlined enterprise operations. Like any technological enhancement, its goal is to improve business processes to benefit the bottom line.

This paper will discuss the rationale and benefits of online communication and collaboration via Internet implementation. It will also highlight some of the latest developments and trends going forward and address what the future holds for e-business in the oil industry.

Looking beyond the fundamental implementations, such as setting up a web site to market products, we will discuss a working model for launching far-reaching e-business initiatives that deliver products and services to the E&P arena.

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