How Oil and Gas Companies Evaluate Petrophysical Software [Video]

[Click to watch: SPRI Petrophysical Software]

Q: How can you help a company identify their need for G&G, petrophysical and reservoir engineering software?

Bruce: The different science softwares, you know and the different geology geophysics, petrophysical, reservoir engineering groups. It’s really all about the character of the company and finding a best-fit between the character of the company and their employees and the software. There’s a large diversity of software out there for all of the disciplines. But it only does the company good if the people using it are comfortable with it, and there’s a best-fit with them.

It will drive more value if…If your users are less computer savvy, then there’s no sense in having software that is not user-friendly because it has a lot of capabilities, but all of those capabilities are not likely to get used.

Q: How do you determine the sophistication level your company needs when selecting a geophysical software?

Bruce: How do we know where the best fit is between software and the company? I’ve been through this exercise numerous times. To find that best fit, it’s all about understanding the client, their personnel, who the users are going to be and then understanding the different levels of the sophistication of the software packages that are out there. Understanding that, you can engineer a best-fit between capability and what the users will really use.

Q: What are one or two questions companies should ask when evaluating petrophysical software?

Bruce: What are the questions that a company should be asking, or typically asks when they’re evaluating petrophysical software packages? One is certainly: Are my people going to be…this is a tool that is supposed to be useful to the people and to the company. So the question is: Are my people going to be a slave to the software, or is the software going to be a slave to them? Who’s working for who, and who’s working with what?

If the software’s so sophisticated (which is a positive feature). If the employees understand how to work with it…and a lot of times the sophistication requires workarounds. You get a roadblock, you don’t understand how to get from A to B, a more sophisticated user is going to be able to tap into more capabilities; a less sophisticated user will not. So you’ve spent more money on something that you’re not going to derive value from.

Q: What are some considerations when investing in training around your chosen petrophysical software package?

Bruce: Training courses that come with software is a really good question as far as how useful are they? Experienced, hands-on working with a tool is always better than training.

You can give a hammer to someone, teach them how to use it, but invariably they’ll smash their thumb. So, that’s the best kind of analog I can come up with. A lot of people will get a tool that they can’t handle, or they can’t learn. And you can teach them how to use it, but they just can’t pick it up. And so, you end up with employees mashing their thumbs.

For a list of some of the petrophysical interpretation software packages on the market, see our previous post with more information about your options.

Bruce GanerBruce has over 40 years of experience in the oil and gas industry including founding Sierra Pine Resources International in 1997.

Bruce holds Bachelor of Science degrees in Physics and Mathematics from Central Michigan University and a Master of Science degree in Petroleum Engineering from the University of Houston.