Industry Article: Upgrading the Industry in the Information Age

Publication: E&P
Publication Date: 04/01/2018

by Brian Walzel, E&P associate editor for production technologies

Steve Uren, head of simulation at Schlumberger, discusses the implementation of virtual reality (VR) for onboarding new employees who have no experience in the field and, more specifically, for its cementing downhole tool systems to E&P associate editor, Brian Walzel.

Uren said, “The training for the cementing downhole tool systems evolved from what was primarily a traditional classroom environment into a VR simulation of the actual working environment of the system.”

Upgrading the Industry in the Information Age

Schlumberger is using VR systems to train employees who are new to the oil and gas industry.

“We redesigned the entire program with some prework requirements. Once the employees arrive at the learning center, they engage in daily activities in the VR environment,” he said. “We basically removed all of the traditional classroom activities.”

Uren said the purpose of utilizing a VR environment rather than traditional classroom methods was to increase the fluency of specialists, make them more comfortable working in the field and enhance trainees’ ability to better process operational steps.

“In December 2017 Schlumberger rolled out a VR onboarding training program for new entrants to the industry, such as engineers and technicians who typically have not had field experience,” Uren said. The VR training environment simulates a variety of environments, such as a land rig, offshore jackup rig and offshore semisubmersible unit.

“The trainees can explore the general arrangement of the rig,” he said. “New employees are given an accelerated introduction to the different rig types they will experience; they have the opportunity to walk around and understand where the equipment is and what the equipment does.”

Uren added, “Feedback from the training has been very positive with employees embracing the change of learning environment and tools.”

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