Benchmarked results on well construction projects show that many projects incurred significant cost over runs. Half of the mega projects since 1993 have been disasters resulting in a destruction of capital for oil companies. Insufficient drilling front-end loading and inadequate team organization have been identified as preventable causes of these over runs.

Deepwater projects involve multiple challenges of new technology, geological uncertainty and, often, a fast track approach. The wells' portion of the total project cost often exceeds 50%. The huge price for intervention activities later in the life of these wells requires that the initial completion remain in place and function as planned for a long time.

Predictable and distinctive drilling and completion performance is a must for the high cost projects that typify deepwater.

This paper will describe a methodology that has been successfully applied with repeatable best in class results in the North Sea and Gulf of Mexico. This methodology addresses the need that teams are organized to fit the project (not the other way around) and that systems integration is treated as a high priority. The results typically achieved with this methodology are in the range 20 – 23 days per 10,000 ft – best in class in both regions and 35% better than the average drilling time – with commensurate improvements in production and data acquisition. Short case histories of deepwater exploration and development wells are described – including a horizontal development well.

The paper describes:

  • how the projects were organized,

  • how the teams were aligned to their objective and goals,

  • the processes that support these successful teams,

  • how the teams were motivated to perform,

  • how web based support can function to create co-location through the virtual world.

The paper also contrasts this methodology with traditional operations.

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