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Best Practices of Knowledge management at British Petroleum

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Mrinil Mathur

on 18 September 2013

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Transcript of Best Practices of Knowledge management at British Petroleum

Best Practices of Knowledge management at British Petroleum
About British Petroleum
British Petroleum is the third largest energy company & the fourth largest company in the world, and one of the six gas super major measured by 2011 measured revenue.
Operates over in over 80 countries and has 21,800 service stations worldwide.
Production= 3.4 million barrels/day.
Works in the field of exploration , production, refining, distribution, marketing petrochemical, power generation and trading

Implementation
Produced equipment necessary for installation of virtual team workstations known as clients. The other equipment included are the video conferencing equipment, email, tools to record video clip, a web browser, document scanner etc.
Depending on the requirements they were either connected through ISDN cables or satellite links.



"The biggest single source of sustainable competitive advantage in the future will be our ability to create and mobilize knowledge in the interest of new products and services."
-Kent Greens,
Knowledge Management Team leader, BP
BP AND KM
The message from John Brown, former President of British Petroleum was: “Most activities or tasks are not onetime events. Our philosophy is fairly simple: every time we do something again, we should do it better than the last time.”

Initiated by CEO John Browne in1994

18 month, $13 billion pilot project

Connected the units with communication
Equipment and test the communication infrastructure

Helped in problem solving and
cost saving capabilities.


Enable employees to share task specific information
and develop a cordial working relationship with the
employees of other units.
Encouraged the sharing of knowledge and to
motivate the business units to utilize IT tools to
improve their business.
VIRTUAL TEAM PROJECT
Initiated by CEO John Browne in 1994
18 month, $13 billion pilot project
Connected the units with communication equipment and test the communication infrastructure
Helped in problem solving and cost saving capabilities.

The entire management of the VTP is taken care of by the core team of BP, consisting of five members from different divisions.


Enable employees to share task specific information and develop a cordial working relationship with the employees of other units.

Encouraged the sharing of knowledge and to motivate the business units to utilize IT tools to improve their business.


VTP TEAMS
Challenges faced
Initially the peer group was not providing expected value addition
Thus, in 1995 BP fixed performance targets for individual business units- eventually the business units realized the advantages of pooling and exchanging valuable information
BP thus, decreased the number of peer groups; redundant meetings were not encouraged

Benefits Reaped
The Andrew Project was successfully accomplished 6 months before its stipulated time; completed at a cost of $444million instead of $560million

Employees began to participate in projects and productivity improved

The VTP helped save BP employees time- contractors and employees mostly interacted though Video Conferencing

The VTP led to inter-group interactions-teams now shared their experiences and knowledge gains


KNOWLEDGE MANAGEMENT TEAM

- Formal KM Strategy for BP
- Formation of Knowledge Management Team as Corporate level entity, January 1997
- Addressed the concerns of BP unit heads that the centralized KM task force might dominate KM initiatives at BP.

Knowledge assets
Greens, was the head of KMT.
KMT initially comprised of 10 members drawn from the VTP.
1st year, KMT visited various divisions to learn about successful KM practices of BP
KMT evolved a BP Knowledge Management Framework.
Framework consisted of four KM tools called as Knowledge Assets.
These tools enabled employees across BP to learn before, during and after the implementation of projects.


KM Tools
->Peer Assist
This tool is for learning before doing.
->After Acton Review
This tool is for learning while doing
->BP Connect
A system on the BP Intranet designed to connect people within the company
->Retrospect
This tool is for learning after doing.

Benefits
->Reduces Cost
->Helps employees to obtain expert advice when making critical decisions
->Enhances business productivity by sharing best practices
->Platform to showcase employees talent and credibility.
->Develops healthy interaction between employees across the globe.
->Encapsulates learning from the turnarounds.
->Provides valuable information on different projects
->Conserving the environment and reducing pollution

Drawbacks
Enthusiastic employees asked for a large number of Peer Assists, irrespective of whether they were useful or not for BP
Wastage of company’s time and money.


Overcoming drawbacks
Title business unit heads as ‘human portals’.
Identified employees having knowledge about BP’s KM projects and can help other employees who seek information.


Emission Trading System
Increasing concerns over environmental issues by various states and corporates, during mid-1990s

Managements decision to contribute to environmental and social causes

The goal laid by Browne in 1998-to reduce the harmful gas emissions to 10% less by 2002.



The model
Established in late 1998
Each business unit at BP was allocated emission reduction targets which were in units of ‘allowance’
Rewards or penalties to each unit depending on the actual emissions and prescribed target
Emissions of CO2 and Methane traded
1 metric tonne of CO2= 1 allowance




GHG (Green House Gas) register
Allowance specific serial number
Internal Electronic Market(IEM)
Environmental database


Elements
Environmental database
One point reference to all data regarding emissions and achievements by various countries.
Huge data which were complex in nature could be scanned easily even by new user and this database had advanced navigation and search tools.

KM tools to reduce emission
A database that provided information about the problem faced in reducing emission and indicence of notable achievements.

The advanced technology and easy navigation and search techniques which was very user friendly and allowed quick scan through huge volumes of data.

The buying and selling was conducted through open biding.


Thank you
Full transcript