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Why Oilfield Services Companies Need an ERP

If you’re reading this today, congratulations! You have grown your oilfield services business to the point where you need a tool to streamline operations.


However, it also means that you’re probably dealing with a number of headaches. You may be struggling to combine clipboards with tickets and spreadsheets. You are likely working far too hard, using a system that no longer works for you.


It’s time for your company to invest in an ERP. The good news is that the marketplace is full of digital solutions, each designed to simplify your operations and give you more visibility into where your time and money are going.


The bad news is that most ERPs are not built with your industry in mind. That means that you will almost certainly have to combine your new wave technology with your old school systems, which may only be marginally better than your original.


The better news is that there is an ERP built with the oilfield services industry in mind.


Signs You’re Ready (or Overdue) for an ERP


If you’re still somewhat on the fence, or weighing the costs of an ERP versus the benefits, let us ask you this.


How many of these issues are you struggling with right now?


  • We have lots of different systems/software for a lot of different processes, in a lot of different places

  • We don’t have easy access to information about our business or finances

  • Accounting takes a lot longer than it should

  • It takes us too long to go from performing the work, to invoicing, to getting paid

  • If the wrong person calls in sick or quits, we’re in a lot of trouble. Things will pretty much stop behind the scenes

Oilfield Service ERP

Maybe accounting and invoicing errors are costing you too much money. Maybe one big error led you to say, “Enough is enough. We need a better way.”


In any case, the right ERP can help you solve all of the above problems. But, only if you choose the right one.


What About Combining Your Current Operations With an Accounting Program?


You may be considering combining a few of your legacy systems with an accounting platform like Sage or QuickBooks.


They could solve some of your problems. However, it’s more likely they will create a whole new set of problems. Neither of those platforms were built with the oilfields services sector in mind. This means a lot of your accounting will take place out of your accounting program.


It’s possible that you have already tried accounting software, possibly augmented by a few other third-party “bolt-on” applications.


If that’s the case, we don’t have to tell you that a lack of industry-specific modules in your program can cause:

  • Wasted time and frequent errors due to double entry

  • A lagging cash conversion cycle

  • A lack of transparency into your finances

Take field work or the shop floor, for example. Most companies use handwritten tickets that are filled out by frontline employees. An employee manually writes the ticket, then hands it off to someone else that enters the information into the system. Next, another employee needs to interpret the information on the ticket and then punch that data into whatever combination of systems they are using.


This is an inefficient double entry that opens the door to errors. At the same time, any handwritten ticket could be easily misread, misunderstood, or lost.


You need a system that was purpose-built for your industry, with no gaps or compatibility problems.


Cash Conversion: The Most Common Problem in the Oilfield Services Sector


Of course, the most likely problem that brought you to this blog is your company’s money being “stuck.” Your cash conversion cycle is taking too long, which is making it next to impossible to grow your business.


In most cases, this is caused by:

  • A lack of visibility into your overdue accounts receivables

  • Not being able to get field tickets signed/ processed

  • A disconnected invoicing system

  • Invoicing errors due to inaccurate or missing paperwork orders/invoices

  • Frequent rework

Field Ticket Software

How Discovery Can Free up Your Cash


Our Field Ticket System allows your field staff to enter the results of a job (while still in the field) and create a priced field ticket for the customer to sign. The information is then sent via an Internet connection to Discovery’s ERP system for review and invoicing. Manual entry, double entry, mistakes, and lost tickets are things of the past.


Discovery also gives you more visibility into your purchases. We have an internal PO variance system that helps you track the difference between purchase order cost and supplier invoice cost. And then, those cost differentials can flow back to your weighted average cost and inventory so that you have much more accuracy in your financials and in your assets, which gives you better order margin accuracy.


At the same time, our ERP gives you a 360-degree view of your financials at all times, which includes real-time information on the status of all accounts receivables.


About Discovery Solutions


Founded in 1983 Discovery Solutions has been building software to help businesses operate in the oil field service sector. Discovery was one of the first companies to package multiple modules together in a single ERP, rather than selling individual applications enabling our clients to simplify their operations.


What differentiates us is that our team has extensive oil and gas industry experience. This allows us to understand your business, work with your team and to design a product for an evolving sector.


Download our E-Book providing more detail on when it's time for an ERP:


We’re Ready to Talk About Your Needs


We hope you’ve found this information helpful. If you have any questions about what Discovery can do for your organization, we invite you to contact us at 1-877-580-9001 or hello@discovery-solutions.com.