Why Data Matters For Your Oil & Gas Business
This week, I’d like to tackle two topics relating to computers and some best practices you want to make sure you and your company are implementing.
When you think about the duties you perform at work each day, how many of you can unequivocally say that you use data to complete your job? I would be shocked if everyone’s hands weren’t up right now. Data is the driving force in the work place today and it’s important to understand precisely why data matters.
Data matters because it controls how we operate our businesses and make decisions on a daily, hourly even minute-ly, (if it was a word) basis. For those in the oil and gas industry, you use data to make decisions on how a well is performing, how much money is owed to you or how much you owe your investors, if you want to continue with the well you’re drilling, just as starters.
To me, the data you gather is the reason you are in business, which is why it’s imperative you protect the data you’re gathering, and understand how to get the most out of your data. Even if I gathered all the data I could, and stored in on my computer, it wouldn’t do me any good if I can’t interpret it.
Here are my suggestions for protecting and interpreting your data.
How to protect data
The two most important steps I want to share on protecting data are: 1. Use the security settings available on your computer and software programs you use regularly. Protecting data doesn’t just mean protecting it from loss, but also preserving the integrity of your data.
If the software programs you use at work have security settings, use them! Set access restrictions on data and applications for all users so that only those with permission can access the data driving your business.
With SherWare’s software, in addition to using Windows’ security settings for your office, you can also set security settings for what functions and reports users can access with our software.
2. Regularly backup your data. People recommend backing up your data monthly, weekly, daily, or even more often. How often you decide to back up your data at work can be determined by this rule of thumb: How much data can you afford to lose if your system completely crashes?If you can re-enter a week’s worth of data in the event of a system crash, then only backup once per week, for others, you’re probably thinking daily or even hourly.
Once you have the frequency set for how often you want to back up your data, make a plan for how many backups to complete and where to store them. It’s not ridiculous to 1) Do a backup 2) Make a backup of that backup 3) Make a backup of that backup and then 4) Make one more copy of the backup and store it in a location other than your office, in the case of fire, flood, destruction, etc.
We get countless emails and calls per week to our Support Desk asking if there’s any way to get back their oil and gas accounting software data after their computer crashes. Without a backup, sadly, the answer is no.
How to Get the Most Out of Your Data:
1. Decide what information, trends, reports, figures, etc. that you’d like to collect from your data. What info do you use regularly at work to get your job done?
2. Brainstorm what data you still need/want to make your job easier and more efficient. What other reports or lists of info would be beneficial in helping you make decisions? What else do higher-ups in the chain of command ask for regularly?
3. Learn how to use the programs needed to get this data from. Is there any data you’ve added to your list that you can’t find how to access? Utilitize help files, training sessions and by asking the support teams available how to access this information.
4. Make sure the software you’re using has the ability to give you the information you want and in a timely matter. Again – your data is useless to you unless you can interpret it.
Loss of data and data integrity or not understanding how to interpret your data can set your company back a lot of money and hours, days, even weeks in time, restoring that data.
Save your company time and money by treating your data as the valuable commodity it is. Is there anything that you’d add to this list from your own experiences?
Learn more about SherWare’s data backup services and training options on our website to get the most out of your data.