In late 2014 Premier Oil Vietnam recognised there was room for improvement of the control and dissemination of its documents. According to Information Management Coordinator Pham Nguyen Cuong, the improvement focused on two areas; increased document security and automation of developing and delivering documents. This would save time and money by increasing the efficiency and accuracy of document retrieval and reducing operational risks. Appvity was contracted to help overhaul the existing system with SharePoint and Nintex Workflow and Forms.
Under the old system, the document controller’s work was similar to that of an air-traffic controller; she received a constant in-flow of requests for permission, requests for more information and requests for desired documents, and delivered approval requests and then approvals. She managed documents controlled by numbers listed on a master document printed in three-ring binders sitting on her desk. To add to her challenge, this document coding was neither intuitive nor understood by the offshore workforce who needed access. It is easy to imagine the issues she faced and the time she spent managing duplicates, version control and requests for documents, with many persons requesting access in their search for the right information. First and foremost the new Appvity Workflow provides automated document numbering and improved filing and retrieval of documents to improve document control and an easy to access control list that makes much more sense to the end users.
Approval for many documents had to travel up the chain-of-command, so the document controller spent countless hours sending permission requests up to management in several departments. When asked about the new Workflow Binh Nguyen, Technical Program Manager with Appvity noted “in the past, simple approvals were often taking two business days, now the same outcome rarely takes more than a couple of hours.” This outcome was achieved by reconfiguring SharePoint Workflows to deliver clear requests to the appropriate manager. Document numbers are auto-generated, increasing efficiency, alleviating potential confusion and freeing up the document controller for more value-adding work. The Lazy Approval feature means that if approval is needed from an external stakeholder, a manager only has to click a button instead of spending time collating information and drafting an approval request. The new system allows managers to check where a document is in the process and who is accessing a specific version, all of which improves security and operational assurance.
In the high-stakes industry of energy production, breach of information security is a risk every business takes seriously. On a typical day, Premier Oil Vietnam employs up to 100 contractors and vendors offshore. It is important these engineers, line workers, painters, divers can access the Premier Oil documents that are relevant to their jobs. But the company also needs to ensure that its proprietary information does not get shared more widely.
Pham Nguyen Cuong says “For me a real selling point about the Nintex solution is its ability to set and change permissions for every document flowing through the system.” For example, a welding lead on Premier Oil’s offshore facility can view the engineering plans for his work, but is not able to open a financial statement, even if he receives it by accident. This prevents information from being passed, by accident or design, to a competing interest or media outlet.
Cuong says the company currently has ten active Workflows, including correspondence, document management and notifications. Nintex Workflows generate documents very quickly; a click of a button instantly produces an autogenerated ID number, links in multiple areas, metadata integrated for easy search, taxonomy, tracking, and stats. Cuong and his team plans to add five more Workflows by the end of 2015, including archiving and automated travel requests. But he hints that possibilities around projects and potential processes are endless. “Working with the end-users in the future, I think we have a lot of business processes where we can apply the Nintex workflow. I think it is very workable for a more controlled, efficient, safe and secure future,” he says.
Pham Nguyen Cuong
Information Management Coordinator
Premier Oil is a growing oil and gas company with current interests in twelve countries around the world. As they expand, efficiency and safety maintenance is
SharePoint and Nintex configured for automatic generation of request forms, documents, document numbers, notifications, lazy approval, and tracking.
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