Imagine you’ve hired a financial consultant to review your company’s paperwork. Chances are, they’d recommend a few budget cuts. Perhaps they’d find you spend too much on third-party contractors, or maybe one of your departments has a swollen R&D budget.
It doesn’t take a financial specialist to tell you that reducing expenditures makes the most of your budget—everyone knows cutting costs is vital to a company’s financial health. But equally important, is investing money into ideas that boost the success of your core business.
So, why is it that so many pipeline operators pay big money to manage threats, instead of capitalizing on an integrity management solution with an undeniable return-on-investment?
Making a digital transformation to a scalable integrity software that uses machine learning and data science is a strategic choice that pays for itself. Here’s how.
Improves threat planning
For most companies, simply keeping up with prescribed threat planning takes an enormous amount of time and resources, let alone implementing improvements. Integrity management software takes care of the heavy lifting, so you can make better decisions when it comes to integrity assessments.
Machine learning accelerates complex data analysis, freeing up your engineers for making important integrity decisions. And analysis used in combination with GIS data increases location accuracy—perhaps enough for you to eliminate high-cost validation digs.
When it comes to ILI data, integrity software helps you to recover sunk costs by putting entire sets of run data to use. Powerful analytics uses all your data, not just the sections related to HCAs. And when you incorporate direct assessment data from digs, you’ll have a clearer picture of pipeline integrity than ever before.
Integrity management software allows you to target the right tool technologies, improve growth forecasting, and make better decisions so making threat planning more efficient than ever.
Optimizes dig management
Digs are expensive, and there’s no way around it—to verify anomalies you need to dig them up. Integrity software pays for itself by optimizing your dig program, ensuring you’re spending money in the right place, literally.
Pit-to-pit matching, coupled with GIS location information, increases the accuracy of your digs. And advanced threat analysis makes your dig program more effective, by ensuring you’re not digging up anomalies that don’t need to be addressed.
According to Tim Edward, OneBridge President. “Even a 1% delta in improving Repair Fraction is significant, and we believe our customers may see efficiency gains in the 10 or 20% range, which will greatly improve their risk and financial metrics through the use of CIM.”
Integrity management software using machine learning and data science gives you a greater understanding of threats along your pipeline, meaning you’ll have greater flexibility when it comes to remediation timelines. This lets you confidently schedule non-urgent digs so that program resources aren’t stretched thin.
Integrity management software increases dig accuracy, allows you to create a steady dig schedule, and makes for a predictable maintenance budget. Overall, software is a small investment compared to the potential savings.
Frees staff for high-value work
Information gathering for integrity management is largely a workforce endeavor, especially when your records consist of a room stacked full of paper files. Your records may go back 10, 15, or even 20 years, and crosschecking, validating, and re-validating using human resources is inefficient and hugely expensive.
Digitizing your records with integrity software enables you to store data and retrieve it easily, without having to hire an army of contractors. Integrity software, in combination with data science, can eliminate 1,000’s of spreadsheets stored on various personal computers, and make the information accessible to you in an instant.
Integrity software not only saves you the cost of hiring 3rd parties to compile reports, but it saves the enormous amount of time it takes to get those reports to the people who need them most—managers, regulators, and auditors.
As an added benefit, cloud-based integrity software gives you peace of mind by ensuring your data is protected, safe, and secure.
Automates compliance activities
Even when you’re doing all the right things, it isn’t easy to meet stringent regulatory requirements. Integrity software pays for itself by preventing costs associated with integrity compliance.
Advanced reporting capability strengthens compliance efforts, helping you avoid hefty fines and regulatory violations. And with software analysis that uses machine learning and data science, you avoid ruptures that lead to costly pipeline repairs, loss of product, and invaluable damage to your reputation.
An integrity software solution can allow you to automate complex, time-consuming reports—such as PHMSA’s F&G or Mega Rule requirements—with the push of a button. Using a digital solution not only saves time and resources, but it also reduces the chance of human error.
Software adds value to integrity
Integrity management software delivers a return-on-investment in multiple ways. It improves threat planning, which optimizes dig management and reduces maintenance budgets year after year. It improves your integrity analysis so you can avoid costly ruptures, and it makes pipeline information available on-demand, so it won’t take teams of people hundreds of hours, combing through paper records, to produce compliance reports.
When you consider the benefits of machine learning and data science, the question you should be asking isn’t whether you can afford integrity management software. It’s how much longer can you afford not to have it.