Value Creation at SMS – How to Survive an Oil Field Crisis in Real Time

SMS Team / February 14, 2017

Since the Autumn of 2014 the Oil Industry has been in a state of flux or crisis if you will. It’s an ongoing process of grappling with the changing face of our community. As we kick start into 2017 and for those of us (and I mean businesses and employees) still in the game it’s been an experience we shall no doubt take with us for the foreseeable future.

However, this got me thinking on why has our business (SMS) survived and in many ways thrived through this period? What has set us apart from other outwardly similar organisations? Let me share my thoughts on the subject matter – I’ll put forward a disclaimer at this point, these are very much a personal view. At this point in time I believe them to be true… well thought out or ill-conceived only the luxury of reflection after these events will tell!

Planning for the Future: Discipline & Innovation, our cornerstones for success

Oh dear, planning it’s all very dull, isn’t it? Actually no, a well-conceived strategy (if I can be so bold to brand this as strategy) that encompasses a values-based belief system has proved to be a source of strength through testing times. Discipline in how we work, our collective striving for operational excellence, our commitment to learning & development combined with spearheading technological advances in flow assurance sensing capability, integration and dynamic visualisation applications for enlightened data use. These are the headline themes that spring to mind as I capture our strategy in motion.


Our dynamic technology redefines how sensory information is realised, combining state-of-the-art hardware, intelligent realtime data and secure global connectivity.

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We analyse integrated data using SMART software to provide award-winning visualisation, reporting and understanding – creating a truly interactive, immersive experience.

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We exceed expectation, provide trusted insight and make a genuine difference to our clients’ operational performance – supporting informed decision-making and maximising value.

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The markets are a changing... Sense. Understand. Perform.

Yes indeed, what was normal is no longer the case! Indeed, the only consistency is there is no consistency! The norms that seemed to be set in stone have been washed away in a tsunami of financial turmoil and eye watering re-appraisals of balance sheets. How have we dealt with these dramatic conditions, to make sense of it all? Well quite simply put our vision is of a Scottish Business of International Acclaim - we have a broad base of international hubs, a value proposition that is easy to understand and our people are focused on client performance.

Value Creation: We are not a commodity, repeat after me!

We’ve heard so much in the recent past about competitive advantages, value creation and other such mantras but really this crisis and in this industry, it’s been all about cost reduction and commoditisation of business down to the nth degree. Where’s the value in that? Very little is the answer. Our approach is somewhat different; we are absolutely committed to real value creation. There’s a great Harvard Business Review (HBR) article - The Elements of Value - that might help those in need of guidance:

How does this manifest itself? Well, we’re all about topside flow assurance sensing technology, software that connects, integrates and provides information access along with asset visualisation applications to deliver results driven decision making and operational success. Check out the infographic for the “How it Works” moment at the end.

Are We There Yet?

Quite clearly not. Yes, it appears that the bottom of the market has been called (according to Oilfield Services giant Schlumberger’s CEO, Paal Kibsgaard) yet there is also the acknowledgement that considerable resolve is required. We foresee a challenging 2017 ahead as the industry looks to steady the ship before re-commencing on reserves replacement projects.

Survival of the Fittest

I mooted at the start that value creation would be panacea for survival in this industry crisis. Is this the case and will our business survive? Well, we’re certainly giving ourselves the best shot at it with a clear, concise strategy and objectives that are set to help our clients overcome their challenges head on. Here in the UK we’re focused on OPEX spend with targeted flow assurance expertise, in the Middle East we’re working on specific problems associated with Fracking and Sour Gas field applications and in SE Asia we’re at the forefront of active Sand Management to extend the life of field projects. Discipline and innovation is our mindset. We’ve made tough decisions along the way - always with the long term need of our collective health at heart – and always been mindful of the future capability for technology and people. It’s all around a concept of sustainable development.

Technology Enabled. Human Inspired... plus a smattering of good fortune.

So, all the elements for success are in there, but one thing we can’t underestimate is our good fortune and the goodwill we have carried with us. We’re lucky to have amazing people that treat the business as their own, we’re lucky to have a cohesive range of topsides flow assurance sensing and analytics capability, we’re lucky to have software and visualisation capability to wrap and integrate our offerings seamlessly with host systems and most of all we’re incredibly lucky to have clients that value the services and offerings we have created. We are technology enabled and human inspired; with luck our world of value creation will deliver us through to a prosperous future.

…..and Lastly What We’ve Got to Offer and How to Get in Touch:

What’s New:

Modular flow assurance sensor and analytics capability – perfect for well services and optimisation programmes that builds on our heritage portfolio of Sand Management expertise.

SMS Real Time Integrated Monitoring Package

What you get:

Integrated sensing and analytics packages – wireless and wired sensing for sand and corrosion, solids sampling, 3D wall thickness mapping, oil in water, H2S/CO2, hydrates management, all can be remote managed via our integration platform along with cloud based management and imaging capability.

Value Creation:

Integrated technology that automates, maximises up time and eradicates unnecessary cost.

Key Locations / Where to Buy:

Regional hubs for Europe / Africa, Middle East & Asia – Check out our web contact pages and enquiry forms.

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