You may get it from the station on the corner, but the oil and gas that keeps the modern world moving comes from some of the most remote and inhospitable locations on the planet. From offshore locations on the rough seas to the remote tundra of the upper latitudes, companies like TETRA Technologies have teams all over the world prospecting and extracting oil and gas reserves.
The persistent challenge they share with the rest of the oil and gas industry? Increasing value while perpetually reducing operational costs. As anyone who works in operations or logistics can tell you, dispatching the wrong personnel, equipment, or product to the wrong place can be costly and time consuming. The right data, delivered in real-time, can keep your entire organization running at the same pace, and in the same direction.
This was a challenge TETRA Technologies was finding throughout their organization.
“We’re getting constant pressure from our oil and gas customers to reduce pricing, and this means becoming the most cost-effective organization with real-time data to make decisions rapidly,” says Elijio Serrano, SVP and CFO. “If we know what the mechanics are doing and what parts they need, the issues they have, all in real time, we can manage our parts warehouses and suppliers, we can distribute workloads accordingly and accelerate our cash flow to generate more cash, quickly.”
While data visibility is the dream scenario for any organization, getting to that point requires some revolutionary thinking. Right out of the gate, TETRA knew they had inventory issues within one of its divisions - Compressco. As a remote facility, Compressco developed a series of homegrown methods for data collection and distribution. Over the years these solutions had been implemented to solve an immediate problem, but never fully integrated into the greater logistics of TETRA.
“They had their own IT and accounting team, separate from the rest of TETRA,” says Serrano. “These teams were using internally-developed field data capture systems, their own CRM and sales order system, and all of it fed into an antiquated leger system. As a result, everything required a significant amount of clerical labor to get from one system to the next.
At Nextworld/ Cloud Inventory, we’ve seen this problem in just about every industry and in companies of all sizes. Factions within organizations buy into enterprise solutions that best serve their departments or are favored by one member of the leadership without considering how it will work for the whole organization. Data visibility between these kinds of platforms can be limited; forcing your administrators to export, reformat, and import data. In our experience, this opens your systems up to a world of errors.
At a certain point, your favorite enterprise software becomes more of a problem than the solution it promised to deliver. Inconsistent data can lead to issues with invoicing, P&L visibility, performance metrics, management allocation, and in TETRA’s case: inventory reconciliation. Overordering supplies means money sitting on the shelf while a lack of inventory could leave your crew idle - potentially costing you even more money.
It began with the migration of Compressco’s team, data, and processes into TETRA’s enterprise-wide software and CRM systems (powered by Oracle’s JDE1). Then, Compressco needed an advanced, scalable field data capture system to track labor allocation and inventory across the division. With this kind of data, delivered in real-time, work orders were process and delivered quickly and accurately.
“Our intent was to test these implementations with Compressco with the goal of rolling them out to other divisions,” Serreno says. Whatever platform they settled on had to work beyond Compressco and serve a global organization that was ten times the size of the division. Also, the data collection software had to work anywhere in the world, on any device, without compromise. To get this, TETRA turned to its existing investment in Cloud Inventory.
The organization was using Cloud Inventory alongside the Field Inventory application for automated data collection. This would allow anyone in TETRA to access and update records from anywhere in the world, even if they went offline or beyond cellular reach. Even the most remote crews would have the information they need and the company records would update the moment they regained a connection to the cloud.
In a world of inconsistency, it’s as real-time as data can get.
Field Inventory gives TETRA’s mechanics the visibility into inventory access so they can assess what every truck, in every yard, warehouse, or remote location is doing. With backend integration, the team can submit requisitions to the main distribution center for materials - all without having to work a single piece of paper. Nothing manual, everything automated, and everyone on the same page.
With a single view, TETRA’s leadership team can get data that is as broad or as detailed as they need to make the right decisions, quickly. Seamless data flow from one enterprise system to another means a vastly improved quality of data. Supply chain visibility means work is better distributed, inventory managed, and assets allocated to ensure optimal cashflow.
With Field Inventory, TETRA now has P&Ls by geographic territories, by mechanic, by unit and even by the customer. No longer is there a question of profitability and adjustments can be made in a matter of moments. Serrano can “leverage supply chain technology to improve shareholder value by generating more earnings, improving cash flows and having the data to make quicker management decisions.”
A fully integrated digital supply chain is what allows TETRA to maintain a strong, yet flexible, position in an industry known for its volatility. Is data visibility slowing your potential? We’d love to show you how you can get back up to speed and own the market you’re in.