COVID-19 has brought new challenges to the global refining industry. Non-essential plant personnel are working from home and most people are traveling less, so some refiners are making more diesel to offset a soft market for jet fuel. Others are struggling as the cracking spread and profit margins are razor thin in some markets. More than ever, refiners are looking for ways to improve efficiency and effectiveness.
Downstream oil and gas refiners are reducing their CAPEX budgets and putting some turnarounds on hold. Other cost control measures include deferring Audits, PHA studies, Maintenance, and Inspections in some cases. As a result, many refiners are shifting focus from Asset Performance Management (APM) to basic compliance activities such as Mechanical Integrity.
Fundamentally, this is a shift from safety to a focus on risk. Downstream oil and gas refiners and processors need true Operational Excellence (OE) programs driven by Intelligent Operations, not more isolated, siloed software applications. Operational Sustainability® brings our OE consulting services and OESuite®, our industry-leading Intelligent Operations software platform, to bear on the production, process safety, and workforce challenges the oil and gas industry faces today.
For the past couple of decades, refiners have focused on OE 3.0 or automation, which led to reduced incidents. Today, OE 4.0 is focused on maximizing profitability and eliminating waste in organizations, leading to transformation. To achieve OE 4.0, companies will create strategic roadmaps to think more long-term going forward. Intelligent Operations is our strategy for achieving Operational Excellence.
The OESuite® software platform offers a full spectrum, built-for-purpose set of integrated modules to address key challenges in the downstream oil and gas sector including Operational Excellence.