SMT Learning Blog

What is Knowledge Capture

Posted by SMT Learning Staff on Jan 30, 2015 11:26:06 AM

Knowledge capture helps with the development of learning strategies to identify the knowledge, skills and attitudes learners need to obtain to perform their job tasks well and safely. 

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Topics: Knowledge Capture

Responding To Adverse Market Conditions Through Risk Mitigation

Posted by RJ Ferguson on Jan 27, 2015 11:28:55 AM

What’s the most valuable asset of any organization? It is an organization’s human resources! What is an age-old approach to managing investments? Buy low and sell high! It’s interesting that in challenging market conditions most organizations cut their workforce, their most valuable asset, which works out to the opposite, buy high and sell low, go figure!

When market conditions change such as the current supply and demand for crude oil, the typical response to the resulting price woes is to cut costs by reducing workforces. Every time an organization disengages with a good employee, they are losing the investment they have made and any future return on the investment that they could realize by remaining engaged with the employee.  Exacerbating the situation is the loss of knowledge and skills the employee takes with them when they leave. It’s a conundrum why workforce reduction is the first act of responding to challenging market conditions.

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Collaborating to Cut Costs Amidst a Global Crude Oil Price War

Posted by SMT Learning Staff on Jan 15, 2015 3:54:39 PM

As we enter 2015, it has become a tough time for companies in the oil & gas industry. With the price of WTI and Brent crude now less than $50, some producers are finding they cannot make a profit. What’s driving the price of crude down? OPEC recently made a decision to not cut production as they have often done in the past. Instead they are continuing with their production levels to ensure the glut of oil in the world which in turn drives down prices. OPEC can afford to do this as their cost of production is far less than North American producers. By continuing their high production levels in the Middle East they appear to be pushing higher cost producers and speculators out of the business. However, it is almost a certainty that when it suits OPEC, it’ll turn the spigots down and as demand exceeds supply, the price of crude will rise again.

There have been numerous articles written about North American oil and gas producers and what their breakeven point is. And certainly producers do not have the same costs because each producer’s methods of exploration, extraction and processing can be a bit different. The differences in methodologies are very important. There will always be a leveling of the playing field and in times like these, those companies with low efficiencies and thus higher cost levels will be forced to make a decision, to either keep producing at low profit margins or for some, a loss, or to scale back or maybe even shut down!

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Helping Organizations With Workforce Performance Management

Posted by SMT Learning Staff on Jan 13, 2015 3:15:01 PM

Effective workforce performance management enables organizations to optimize their performance processes and align employee development and goals with corporate objectives.

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6 Ways an Energy Company Can Plan for Disaster

Posted by SMT Learning Staff on Jan 7, 2015 11:29:00 AM

In addition to the normal disasters that industries in manufacturing face, firms in the oil and gas industry face their own. Disasters, both general and industry-specific, are not only an ever-present danger but usually catastrophic. Just look at the BP Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico, the Piper Alpha fire rig disaster, and countless others. Due to the volatile nature of the products, and the possibility of human error, the oil and gas industry, quite simply, faces bigger risks.

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Case Study: Competency Development and Assurance for Process Operators

Posted by RJ Ferguson on Dec 23, 2014 5:30:00 AM


A multi-national energy company (Company A) processing bitumen (heavy crude oil) out of the Canadian oil sands required operator training for a new multi-billion dollar processing complex which was, at the time, under construction. SMT Plus was contracted to provide part of a competency development and assurance solution for plant and control room operators. The focus was to be on understanding the process, operating and maintaining equipment and controlling the process.
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Topics: Case Studies

10 Questions to Assess Employee Engagement

Posted by SMT Learning Staff on Dec 19, 2014 8:10:00 AM

Are your employees engaged in their roles in the field? How can you know? Employee engagement is very important for the success of a plant. Accurately determining how engaged an employee is in their role can bring many benefits to a corporation looking to tighten all the moving parts and increase profits. 

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Knowledge Capture: A Tangible Asset for Organizational Survival

Posted by John Prpich on Dec 12, 2014 3:05:00 PM

Some would say that the impact on the current and future workforce has shifted from causing significant skills gaps and knowledge transfer issues, to remaining in the workforce past retirement age due to financial hardships. However, fast-forward about 5-8 years from now, the workplace dynamic will be greatly changed. With the Baby Boomer generation exiting the workforce, even from much-delayed retirement, there will be significant opportunity for mid and senior level professionals. 

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Topics: Knowledge Capture

Using Stay Interviews For Workforce Retention

Posted by John Prpich on Dec 10, 2014 3:36:00 PM

Through the years we’ve all probably read about the value or use of exit interviews. What really amazes me is how few organizations use this process to assist them with reducing turnover. The same people sit and wonder why their employees are leaving, but they can’t be bothered with asking them why, in order to use that knowledge to prevent from further loss of key people from in their talent pool. The irony is quite difficult for me to deal with or understand. Then, our HR department comes along and shows us the data on the cost of turnover, and then we look at the data with our eyes wide shut, it’s like we never believed it or cared.

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Topics: Performance Management

The Leadership Paradox: A New Approach to Leader Selection

Posted by John Prpich on Dec 3, 2014 12:03:00 PM

If you Google leadership you get 42.6 million results, suffice it to say that it’s discussed ad nauseam. I don’t want to get into the nature versus nurture debate, however, I do want to suggest something that is tied directly to that debate.

The paradox in leadership:

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Topics: Leadership

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