Technical computing in the oil and gas industry has undergone tremendous changes during the past ten years. Applications initially developed in BASIC, spreadsheet programs, FORTRAN, etc. have advanced into multifunctional, integrated products that are portable across several platforms (various computer systems).
One aspect that has not kept pace with these technological advances is support. As in other businesses, a product, service or line of business that is not properly supported will quickly falter and subsequently be dropped. Support is critical in turning a product or business line into an asset.
Technical computing should be viewed in the same light. Hundreds of thousands of dollars can be spent on technical applications, hardware, training, etc. Such investments should be viewed as adding value to a company's asset base. Without clearly defined support roles and responsibilities, these investments can quickly become non-performing assets or even liabilities.