In the current challenging downturn market scenario, many companies have turned their attention towards enhancing the existing training and knowledge transfer programs for their engineers to reduce costs and improve efficiencies. Keeping in mind the increased spending cuts that the industry is facing, the SPE Gulf Coast Section Continuing Education Committee collaborated with leading technical experts in the drilling domain, and came up with a novel development model to transfer knowledge at reduced costs, while simultaneously raising funds for student scholarships.
In order to provide exposure to advance technologies that focus on improving the drilling performance, a ‘Drilling Workshop' was planned for both the young professionals and the experienced engineers. With the objective of maximizing knowledge transfer and learning, the workshop was scheduled as a one-day event having two separate 3-hour sessions, and focused on current interest areas associated with emerging technologies in drilling. The registration fees for the workshop per attendee ranged from $150 to $250 depending on other organizational costs. Overall overheads were low as compared to some of the existing industry training sessions as no expenses were incurred on instructors' fees or venue costs. As an additional incentive for the companies to allow their employees to attend the workshop, free copies of a textbook related to this topic and valued equal to the registration fees, were provided to all the attendees for further enhancing their engineering fundamentals.
This paper will present detailed features of this knowledge transfer model and will highlight ways in which this model can be effectively incorporated and used by other SPE sections to benefit young engineers and experienced professionals in this current downturn market. Over the course of the last 24 months, 10 such workshops were conducted in various SPE sections in the United States to successfully raise about $60,000 in student scholarships for SPE. In addition, a team of five students was financially supported to attend the SPE Annual Technical Conference & Exhibition in Amsterdam in 2014 using the funds raised from the workshop.
This training and development model has the potential of being a great means of knowledge dissemination across the board in the oil and gas industry. These workshops successfully provided a cost-effective means to revisit the technical fundamentals, along with an avenue for continuous learning for engineers, keeping them updated about the latest available technologies in the industry. This paper will be very useful for all the SPE sections globally, helping them adopt this model for knowledge transfer in challenging times.