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Elevating Drilling Through People and Technology: Navigating the Path to Industry Growth

Ahead of the IADC/SPE International Drilling Conference and Exhibition, 3t Drilling Systems Chief Operating Officer Clive Battisby examines how the industry can seize the opportunity ahead

The IADC/SPE International Drilling Conference and Exhibition is a hallmark event for our industry, bringing together the foremost experts and thought leaders to discuss the latest advancements, trends, and strategies shaping the future of drilling. 

This year, the 3t Drilling Systems team will be in Galveston, Texas, to discuss how our suite of immersive simulation technologies and innovative approach to training can support the industry at a pivotal moment. 

With market recovery on the horizon, we have the opportunity to embrace disciplined growth and innovation – driven by the dual pillars of people and technology. 

Embracing Change to Accelerate Growth 

Across the energy industry, we are experiencing the call for change and evolution. From the type of projects we are to prioritise to how those projects are managed, from how to attract the next generation of talent to how to prepare them for their future careers in energy. Navigating these changes isn’t achievable without an industry-wide approach to collaboration and communication.  

However, the drilling industry is no stranger to change. Already, we have seen and experienced a transition. As a result of effective strategic planning, innovation solutions, and the commitment to responsible asset reactivation, what was once universally accepted as a down market is now in an age of growth. 

We’re an industry with talent, investment, and the resources to lead change, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that when we collaborate, we get results. This approach has led to proven assets being reactivated and revitalised through the latest technologies and ideas.  

Like any industry – or even factor of life – communication and collaboration are critical to ensuring an effective and successful transitional period. Events such as the International Drilling Conference and Exhibition provide the platform to facilitate the dialogue necessary to traverse this transition.  

As a forum that connects a diverse group of people from the industry under one roof, this event is the chance to discuss the latest drilling advancements and track the progress of the most cutting-edge technologies and practices.  

By learning from our contemporaries and exchanging information and ideas with industry leaders and operators, we can overcome the most prevalent challenges, working together to accomplish higher performance levels and pushing through to achieve the potential ahead. 

Elevating Drilling Through People 

Although communication and collaboration are crucial to identifying the path ahead, it is equally vital we have the resources to reach the end goal. This is where the need for human capital comes in. Without the human capital or the talent, how can we meet increasing demand and evolving workforce needs? 

Globally, conversations surrounding talent retention and the skills gap continue to dominate offices, boardrooms, and conferences – and for good reason. If we don’t address this as a community, we run the real risk of industry stagnation. 

With demand for diverse new projects on the rise, we need the talent to deliver. But as we enter a new frontier, the onus is on training providers to instil the confidence that the next generation of talent feels confident in their roles and to take on new projects – many of which there may not be an established blueprint to follow.  

Technology and training are our greatest assets in attracting and retaining talent. By leveraging immersive and engaging technologies, we can create training experiences that equip individuals with the skills and confidence they need but also get them excited about their new careers and the possibilities that lay ahead for them.  

Providing enjoyable training experiences that simulate real-life environments and prepare delegates for their new working conditions, we help them remain agile and adaptable once their careers in energy are fully up and running. It’s not about one training solution for everyone or getting the qualification and going; our approach is developed to last, helping to create a culture of continuous learning that prepares the workforce for whatever comes their way.  

Harnessing the Power of Technology 

A prevalent roadblock in futureproofing the industry is trying to facilitate interest from the younger generation. Whilst still effective as part of a blended learning approach, traditional methods such as classroom-based learning can dampen the appetite of the younger workforce. At 3t, we are committed to meeting younger generations on their terms. That’s where our leading digital simulation and VR technology enters the fray.  

For the drilling industry, embracing technology has proven to be transformational. 

Across the board, from automation and robotics to digitalisation and data analytics, we’ve seen first-hand the role technology can have in streamlining and optimising operations. Whilst talent and human capital will always be a prerequisite, utilising the right technologies can help take our workforce to the next level, adopting a holistic approach to workforce management and competency that reduces time on activities such as data capture and analysis to lead to optimal performance and productivity in the workplace.  

As the global number one simulator technology provider, 3t Drilling Systems’ mission is to develop and manufacture advanced simulation technology that improves safety and efficiency across the industry.  

Innovation is our goal. Our full range of advanced simulators includes Cloud-Based Simulators that offer a virtual classroom experience remotely for an accessible approach, Portable Simulators that revolutionise how training is delivered on-site on the rig, and Full-Size Simulators that offer complete immersion with a full-size accurate representation of the rig environment.  

Our portfolio allows us to provide unique solutions for any individual requirement, targeting the most efficient method that improves safety and asset performance within every drilling operation. 

Deploying over 1,500 of our leading simulators to a global client base that spans 60+ countries, through training and technology, we are committed to helping the next generation of talent to unlock their potential and the career opportunities ahead. 


 Ahead of the 2024 IADC/SPE International Drilling Conference and Exhibition, it’s clear that the future of our industry lies at the intersection of people and technology. By embracing change, fostering innovation, and investing in our workforce, we can propel the drilling industry forward into a new era of growth and prosperity.  

Together, let’s elevate drilling through people and technology, ensuring a sustainable and successful future for generations to come.