Low oil prices over the past few years have led oil and gas organizations to embrace digital transformation to improve the efficiency and quality of well design. Nowadays, digital transformation and reducing well construction can have significant impact on determining the financial viability of a discovery. Teamwork and the collaboration of numerous experts in different disciplines are required to achieve a properly engineered well design that can be executed with minimal risks.

Present-day well planning uses several increasingly obsolete techniques, including maintaining spreadsheets as risk registers, sharing multiple design iterations between disciplines, drilling, and geological concerns, manually replanning to accommodate changes, and people working in "silos"—often from different offices or from home. Along with this, planning software, when installed on a computer, may be difficult to maintain and update with new software releases. Often an expert in one discipline will not have visibility on the work done by other engineers, impeding collaboration. Many linear processes lead not only to increased well planning time but also to suboptimal well design resulting in higher planning and execution costs (Bello et al. 2014).

Today, the oil and gas industry lag in the adoption of digital technologies and most of the ones that exist are not used commercially. Often, the reason is that these solutions address only a very small part of the entire well construction workflow. They are not fully matured, have a poor user interface, and require heavy computing power. Operators, on the other hand, are looking for a full-suite solution and they do not have the resources or expertise to connect various digital solutions existing in the market from different vendors. The need of the hour is an integrated solution that is easy to adopt, provides a collaborative work environment, is cloud-based to leverage computing power (Tanaka et al. 2018), and most importantly supports all the major well design workflows.

In this paper, we discuss the first commercial application of a digital cloud-based well-planning solution in the Middle East region, which enabled Crescent Petroleum to become the first operator to adopt the system in UAE.

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