Broad industry trends that are reshaping the exploration and production operation—an aging work force, competition for the best talent, generational shift, and increasing business complexity—warrant a rethinking of traditional operating models as part of new digital oil field strategies. New operating models, based on collaborative business processes and specialized operating facilities, link engineers with platforms and fields in remote locations via real-time global networks. These collaborative environments enable energy companies to leverage the collective knowledge and experience of expert practitioners to improve performance and capture maximum benefits from smart oil field technologies. Important capabilities that contribute to the success of new operating models include the operator's ability to shape a new culture of collaboration and teamwork based on trust and knowledge transparency, propagate global communities of expert practitioners, leverage tools and technologies that enable the capture and sharing of knowledge in real-time, and, integrate continuous learning as a strategic organizational capability. Now, next-generation Internet, collaboration and knowledge-sharing technologies are converging to introduce a new class of user-defined, user-driven applications that hold the potential to speed realization of these capabilities across the digital oil field. This paper explores how energy companies can leverage next-generation knowledge management; enterprise social computing; and collaboration technologies, as an integral part of digital oil field information systems, to enhance collaborative decision-making and knowledge sharing; and drive operational excellence.

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