Editorial: IADC leads united front to enhance competency across drilling industry
Competency and the need to provide tangible proof of same have become critically important in recent years. Defining applicable skill sets and providing the associated training necessary for every worker on every rig to competently and successfully perform their assigned job duties are primary points of focus for 2014.
In the past 20 years, we have seen LTI rates decrease from 5.33 to 0.26. That metric is a testament to our commitment to safety and training and a clear proxy for overall industry success. However, the better we get, the more difficult it becomes to make incremental improvements. Further improvement in safety performance will require a corresponding improvement in crew competency. A fully competent workforce reduces the likelihood of incidents and catastrophic events and, as we are all fully aware, our industry is judged not by its countless successes but by its occasional failures. We must be united in developing solutions that enhance competency and minimize risk.
As chairman of IADC, I am committed to using our resources to develop these solutions.
In 2012, we embarked on the development of the IADC Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (KSAs) project. The KSAs provide the industry with a benchmark for globally consistent drilling position requirements, as well as recommend a means for effectively evaluating personnel. The project is near completion, and in 2014 the entire drilling community will have access to a robust database containing key competencies for every rig-based position. It’s a project that has had more than 60 subject matter experts contributing to the final project, which serves as a blueprint for measuring competency.
2014 will also see the realization of the Well Control Institute (WCI). With this effort, IADC will lead the industry by improving well control system reliability worldwide. The WCI will introduce a single standard for well control training under the single governance of cross-industry representatives. Development of the WCI is continuing, and we will continue to update IADC members on its progress as the year moves forward.
Work also continues on the Workforce Attraction and Development Initiative (WADI). IADC has brought together community colleges and training providers from more than nine US states to work collaboratively to develop core curriculum and training programs for our industry. We have a huge demand for competent people. At current employment and attrition rates, US onshore rigs require approximately 10,000 new employees annually. If you include the worldwide offshore market, it may be double that number. WADI will provide a crucial industry benefit, as it’s inarguable that community colleges and training providers have unique skill sets ideally suited to recruiting, screening and training new industry candidates.
These initiatives, among a host of others, demonstrate that IADC’s membership is focused on developing solutions to the critical issues facing our industry. Equally important, however, is our desire to communicate these efforts to the wider drilling community and the public. We still face an uphill battle with the public when it comes to demonstrating our commitment to safety, competency and environmental stewardship. Touting our accomplishments and being a vocal contributor to both local and global legislators on regulations affecting our operations is crucial to continued industry success. In the past year, IADC invigorated its government and regulatory affairs and international development divisions to ensure personnel are in place across the globe to proactively advocate on behalf of members. In the coming year, expect to hear more about these efforts as we continue to aggressively and proactively seek out opportunities for further engagement.
All of this and more represent the projects that IADC will be tackling in the coming year in order to deliver maximum value to our members. It’s exciting work, and work that can change our industry for the better. But it doesn’t happen without the expertise and input from our vast and knowledgeable membership. I invite you to join us in developing the solutions and programs that will move our industry into the future.