With COVID-19 continuing to spread, Oil and Gas companies have already started to shut down office locations and tell employees to work from home. Even drilling rigs in the Permian are banning outside visitors and third-party salesmen from coming out to location.
The oil industry is definitely no stranger to remote work, often operating in the most remote locations around the world, but this case is different.
While Silicon Valley has been pushing for remote work cultures, O&G is still heavily dependent on employees coming to the office on a traditional 9-5 schedule. This transition is definitely stressful and new.
Here are a list of tools that can help your organization. Some of them are tools that we use at Digital Wildcatters, others are ones that are highly rated by other companies.
Hopefully, if one thing comes from this, it’s that the oil industry will stop having so much internal dialogue through never-ending email chains. It’s time to get set up with an instant messaging product and this should be used whether you’re a remote operation or on-site.
Slack is a tool that we use at Wildcatters and it’s at the core of everything that we do. With a desktop, mobile, and web app, your team can stay connected and increase the efficiency of communication across your organization.
You have the ability to create separate channels for specific teams or projects, you can direct message anyone on the workspace, and you can have video calls right within the chat.
Slack also has a laundry list of third-party apps that can integrate via API. So if you use calendar app, project management, etc., chances are you can use it inline with slack.
If your organization runs off of Microsoft and prefers to keep it that way, they have a product called Microsoft Teams which is essentially the same concept as Slack. It’s received a lot of praise and we’ve heard it’s surprisingly good.
A very large component to remote work is the ability to have video calls. This is an area where many have tried (Skype, Google Hangouts) but most have just missed the mark.
Zoom came on to the scene and has just absolutely crushed it. If you need a video conferencing service, use Zoom. We’re going to leave it at that.
This section is one that can run for as long as we want it to, there are many tools out there and we have used a lot of them. We’ll keep it short and give you a few that we like and have served us well.
Notion was created to be the ultimate tool that a company ever needs. It has project management capabilities, it can be a CRM, a to-do list, and many more functions.
One of our favorite ways to use it is as a replacement for Google Docs. I’m currently writing this blog in a Notion page right now and it’s much more of cleaner layout and overall nicer experience to organize different types of media.
Monday is a light weight PM tool that gets the job done without a lot of bells and whistles. This is probably better suited for smaller OFS and E&P’s than large organizations.
If you’re a larger corporation, Jira is a better fit. It’s a great tool that we’ve used personally and can recommend.
Airtable is another great lightweight tool that is good for smaller outfits. We have used Airtable for many different projects and databases and we absolutely love it. We have even had interactions with IBM where they sent us material through Airtable, so even large corporations are using it in some capacity.
One tool that we have started using and really like is Keap. This is in an all-in-one CRM that you can use to manage leads, track emails, and send invoices. This tool really helps teams stay on the same page to see where accounts are at in the pipeline.
When moving to remote operations, it’s critical to think about keeping your network and company secure and free of compromise.
There are many VPN providers out there, but few focus specifically on enterprise solutions like OpenVPN. They are a leader in the space and have different solutions to fit the needs of any organization. Definitely a safe bet to keep your information locked down.