About the Client

The client is a world-class provider of equipment products, systems and services for oil, gas and process industries, employing over 15,000 staff in over 100 countries and 300 locations worldwide. They work with all facets of the oil & gas industries, from producers to pipeline operators, in managing and optimizing their daily operations.

Business Challenge

The client’s remote technicians used paper-based processes to capture critical field incident information. Upon returning to their offices, they would create incident reports based on hand-written field notes and what they were able to recall from memory. The process was inefficient and led to incomplete information being added to the field incident management system.

A majority of technicians had access to tablets. A suitable tablet-based mobile app would allow technicians in the field to capture information electronically and complete the process efficiently. The client was interested in acquiring a solution on a pay-for-use basis and engaged Silicus to develop a mobile solution that would work in the field, often with limited connectivity to the internet.

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Silicus Solution

Silicus proposed to build a secure mobile app with a cloud-based mobile-backend and web portal on Microsoft Windows Azure. Leveraging the Windows Azure Cloud, the solution would be highly scalable and cost-effective. Silicus and Client agreed to partner and develop the solution under a software-as-a-service license. Silicus' team developed a mobile solution with the following highlights.

Incident Form Creation and Modification

The primary purpose of the mobile app was to submit in-field incident reports at land-based and offshore oil rigs. Users also needed the ability to query and update previously generated incident reports. This allowed them to append additional information to a report, instead of creating and submitting a new one.

Information Management and Security

Mobile and web system components were designed for users across roles, including internal staff and customer end-users. Multi-level, role-based authentication and authorization combined with organizational hierarchy ensured security of data and information access to users according to their privileges.

Online/Offline Capability

The app needed to work seamlessly in connected and disconnected environments. Before leaving their office, the app allowed field technicians to preload information pertinent to their field visit. Users could enter and access data in a disconnected mode and synchronize automatically when in a connected mode.

Unified Field Incident Administration and Reporting

The web application automated field incident management processes and maximized the efficiency and productivity of the field-force by providing the ability to effectively track, manage and address incidents using a single system. The system also helped administrators collect data and generate reports to analyze incident and service trends.

On the Cloud

Hosting the backend of the mobile app on Windows Azure provided future scalability while ensuring high security and availability. It provides all of the storage, authentication and processing for the app, with minimal administration required by the client.

Technologies Used

Database SQL Server 2012
Database

SQL Server

Platform
Platform

Objective C, Java, REST, .NET

Development Environment
Development Environment

iOS SDK, XCode

Programming
Programming

Objective C, Java, REST, .NET

Client Benefits

Anywhere, Anytime Accessibility

Field technicians have access to relevant information and can create incident reports anytime and anywhere.

Accurate & Automated Incident Reporting Process

Field technicians now are able to create and submit reports electronically, with accuracy and efficiency.

Built on Scalable & Cost-Efficient Infrastructure

With the backend built on Windows Azure Cloud, the solution is highly scalable and requires low upfront investments.

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