5 Benefits of Drilling Software Training

These days software, in general, becomes more and more user-friendly, even as it gets more and more sophisticated. We, as users, also have more confidence in using software without being bothered to read manuals or attend training sessions. Our busy schedules do not allow us to attend software training.

The situation is the same for drilling software users. As drilling engineers, whether we work in oil companies or in service companies, we always have next wells to drill, meetings to attend and deadlines to meet. We are so busy focusing on output that sometimes we forget about taking the time to receive input and recharge ourselves.

Unlike MS Office, drilling engineering software is not general-purpose software. It requires more specific knowledge to obtain results and understand the meanings of those results. Drilling software training should always be the first step to effectively use a software.  Here are the reasons why software training is necessary:

1. Understand the engineering models

All drilling engineering software is based on certain mathematical and engineering models. Understanding these models behind the graphic user interfaces helps us acknowledge the limitations of the software as well as the capabilities.

2. Interpret data meaningfully

Drilling software needs input data such as survey, BHA, wellbore and mud properties to predict hook load, pump pressure and ECD, etc. Like other software, only meaningful input data can lead to meaningful output data. It is necessary for users to know what the required input data is and to explain the meanings of the output data and charts to their colleagues or clients.

3. Increase efficiency

Training helps potential users to see the big picture as well as the tricks and features of the software. Once users know more aspects of the drilling software, they can use the software more efficiently. For example, survey data is essential to describe the well path and calculate the torque, drag and hydraulics. Survey data can be in various formats, Excel, text or PDF. All of our software can import data from these formats. The survey import feature saves tremendous time, especially when importing survey data from a PDF file.

4. Gain confidence

Software training connects the users with the developers of the software. The 2-way communication helps the users understand the ideas and structures of the software. Once users understand the inside calculations, the software is no longer a black box to them. Training removes the mysterious veil of the software. Users become more confident on explaining the results to clients.

5. Guide and influence

The software development training also provides a platform for users to influence and even guide the software development. Users, involved in field operations, can give suggestions, which can enhance the functions. This leads to better versions and win-win situations for software vendors and users.

Ancient Chinese philosopher Confucius once said:

“I hear and I forget.

I see and I remember.

I do and I understand.”

How true this is to drilling software training.

Saving Time Using Drilling Software

Who doesn’t like savings, deals, bargains and even some free stuff every now and then? Further, who does not want to save time in our work? Generally speaking, software save us tremendous amount of time in our daily lives. We heavily rely on Outlook® for our email communication, Microsoft Word® for word processing. These software free us from repeated and often tedious tasks. And they are so common in our work places that we often take them for granted.

While we use these software as tools for our work, they are the missions of many software developers, whose full time jobs are to created them. In this society, everyone serves someone else.

Specifically, drilling engineering software has become an indispensable tool for well planning, especially for horizontal and extend reach well drilling. Being a software developer, I feel very lucky to be involved in this highly creative work, which requires both engineering background and graphic design senses.

Our goal is to create drilling software not only to solve technical problems, but also improve drilling efficiency by solving problems quickly. This means carefully designed user-interfaces so that the users will be able to save trouble and time to perform a certain task.

Time belongs to everyone. Wasting other people’s time is a crime. On the other side, saving people’s time brings benefit to them.

Our way of saving people’s time is to make software extremely easy to use.

We as software developers do not meet with our users often, but our users frequently use our software and some even do on a daily basis. For example, there are more than 500 MUDPRO (drilling mud reporting) users in US. Every morning, these mud engineers open up MUDPRO, input wellbore configuration, mud properties, inventory and type remarks. Then they will generate daily report from MUDPRO Output window. If we can add features to save one user 5 minutes in the process,  we will be able to save 5(min) x 500(user) x 365(day)= 912500(min) = 15208(hr) = 634(day) of time of those 500 MUDPRO users in a period of one year. This is as powerful as the butterfly effect. The flap of a butterfly’s wings in Brazil set off a tornado in Texas. If we make an improvements in our software, hundreds and thousands of software users will benefit, even it means that sometimes we need to spend months for certain feature. But it is worth the efforts. Spending time in software development translate into tremendous time saving for all software users. The benefit is amplified much greatly as more users join the pool.

Happy running software and saving time!