X-industry themes: Replicating best practices from other industries

x industry themes

This blog will explain how success can be replicated by looking at companies from other industries that have relevant or similar business concerns. And since this puts a premium on experiences, let me start this blog by sharing some personal reflections and learnings obtained in the past 2.5 years… Before starting TechnologyCatalogue.com, I worked for 19 years at Shell. In my last role, I initiated and led Shell’s “Technology Replication Thrust for Production Excellence”, which is considered one of the most successful technology deployment vehicles that the company has ever seen. Over a period of about six (6) years, we delivered more than 600 deployments, resulting in a very significant impact on safety, production and cost. Over the years we got better and better at getting technology deployed, including all change management aspects related to it. 

During the years at Shell, I genuinely thought that the quickest ways to improve business performance with technology was to select technology that had already been successfully used somewhere in Shell, and not yet in other Shell assets elsewhere in the world. 

I was wrong. 

The quickest way to make an impact with technology is to select technology successfully used by other companies in the same country or region, and to deploy it in your own assets and projects. This way you can leverage the experience that the supplier already has with doing business in your country, as well as leverage the experience of local tech experts. Also, success stories from your neighbours will help to convince your management; it is more convincing than a success story of something that happened over 10,000 km away. Technology deployment is for a large part an influencing game…

These high ‘do-ability’ technologies are ‘safe bets’ in your technology portfolio. With many of these safe bets in your portfolio, there is room for some technologies that have less certain outcomes but with potentially very significant returns. This is largely similar  to investing in shares whereby people are generally happy to invest in some risky shares (with potentially high returns), provided these are balanced by shares that provide a high chance of a solid return… For more on this, see the recent blog Selecting the right technology to improve business performance!

X-Industry themes

When it comes to replicating what your neighbours have done, keep in mind that you are not limited to companies that are active in the same industry as you are. Other industries can offer very powerful ideas --- there are differences in some aspects, but there are also commonalities. 

To allow the X-sharing between industries, we now offer an additional way to select technology via our platform: X-Industry themes, accessible via the homepage of TechnologyCatalogue.com. 

At this stage, there are four themes: safety, digitalization, CO2 emission reduction and water management. There are more themes to follow, such as Logistics and Maintenance. These are all themes that are not unique to one industry. They are carefully chosen according to what we observed and experienced in the technology deployment of major companies in the global energy sector.. 

For example, the amount of data that is produced every day is truly astonishing across industries. A big challenge is to translate generated data into actionable insights that will optimize business operations, and there are multiple digitalisation technologies out there that can help you with this, such as the offerings from RedEyeKanepi and Frontier Automation . These companies also recently presented their technologies in a webinar organised by TechnologyCatalogue.com  You can have a look at the webinar here.

Another example is Game Artificial Intelligence for Complex Decision Making. Game AI mimics human ability to learn from experience and has become popular  for achieving superhuman performance in sophisticated games such as Chess, Go and Poker. It has been successfully applied in areas of operation in the Oil & Gas industry such as well trajectory planning, rig sequence management and decommissioning planning.

And lastly, the 3D Laser Scanning. 3D scanning is not new, the technology was already developed in the 1960s. One of the first applications was capturing humans for the animation industry, as various articles on the internet highlighted following a quick search. However, its application in the Oil & Gas industry and other industries is far more recent. It can be very useful during the engineering and design phases (to support retrofitting of existing facilities) or during the operational and maintenance phases (to ensure safety and efficiency).


Building a Technology Plan

In order to extract maximum value from the platform, there are various services that we offer. One of them is to support you with building a Technology Plan. When building such plan, we can focus on technologies successfully used by others active in the same country or region. We do not only look at technologies within your own industry, but also those successfully used by companies in other industries.

A typical approach that we use:

  • Based on your business needs, we prepare a list of 30-50 technologies that can potentially be of interest. used by other industries where applicable!

  • This is followed by a number of working sessions to rank the technologies based on impact and do-ability, and to select the top opportunities to deploy. 

  • For each technology, an action plan is developed, describing the actions to be taken to sustainably embed the technology 

  • The outcome is captured in a technology plan (20-30 pages).

This way, we are able to give you a comprehensive scanning of applicable technologies for your business needs, and handpick those that will bring the most value to your company. The Technology Plan we provide companies ensure that you do not only pick the best technology for your business, but you also have a customised manual on how to deploy with the highest potential for success.

You can read more about how we build a Technology Plan in this blog: How To Build a Technology Plan



Deployment experiences of other companies active in your own industry provide a great resource on how you can best manage your own. And there are equally insightful learnings you can obtain from companies in other industries. The X-Industry Themes on the homepage of TechnologyCatalogue.com will aid the selection process. In addition to the free access to the platform, we can help with selecting the best technologies that tailor fit to your business needs.

Curious how this can help you? 

Contact Us


About us

The founders of TechnologyCatalogue.com led technology deployment activities in support of assets across Shell. Over 600 deployments were successfully delivered, resulting in a very significant impact on safety, production and cost. We understand what it takes to get technology deployed, including all change management aspects related to it. Since starting TechnologyCatalogue.com in March 2018, we have supported multiple operators in Upstream and Downstream with technology deployment. 

Our platform TechnologyCatalogue.com was developed based on the first-hand experience that it is often difficult for decision-makers to stay up to date on available technology-driven improvement opportunities for their business. It was launched in Q3 2018 and is steadily growing in terms of content & functionality. Since the launch, >40,000 unique users have accessed the platform. We’re also developing customized versions of the platform. For example, jointly with National Energy Resources Australia, we have delivered a customized version of the portal for Australia (Nera.TechnologyCatalogue.com)

In addition to TechnologyCatalogue.com, we also support suppliers and end-users with getting technology deployment done, through consultancy & workshops.

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