In today’s fast-paced, competitive work environment, with packed schedules, complex operations and countless demands on a person’s time, what would prompt a customer to stop and make time to write a thank-you note to a service provider? Perhaps it’s the successful completion of a challenging job done safely, on time and within budget. It could be the result of an incident-free workplace or a long-term working relationship that has contributed to the customer’s success.


Whatever the specific reason, Transocean customers make time to write to us because our rigs have delivered exceptional value in operations, safety and drilling performance. Beacon asked some of the recent recipients of customer accolades to share their commitment to customer service and how they add extra value worth writing about.

Listening to the Customer

“We listen to our customer,” said Henry Stephens, Performance Manager on the GSF Constellation I (CSI), working offshore Gabon for Total E&P Gabon. That includes inviting Total representatives to meetings and involving them as part of the Transocean family.

The rig also strives to work efficiently to save the customer money. “We plan upcoming jobs and we attempt to do as much offline as possible in order to save on our customer’s day rate,” Stephens shared. “Everyone on the rig works very hard at keeping it safe and we watch out for each other.”

Stephens says delivering outstanding customer value is an important part of the rig’s culture because “everyone on the CSI takes pride in what is said about our rig and our people. Going the extra mile for the customer leads to us being the chosen company for upcoming projects over our competitors and that means a better future for our business,” he added.

Working as a Team

Statoil presented the Transocean Leader with its Rig of the Year award for outstanding results in 2011. The Leader drilled seven exploration wells in the first 10 months of 2011 before being mobilized to drill production wells on the Troll field in the North Sea offshore Norway.

“Our health, safety and environmental results and positive operational delivery reflect good teamwork, including close collaboration between Statoil and our sub-contractors,” said Andrew Lambert, Senior Drilling Engineer, Statoil. “This award will be an inspiration for drilling and will continue the good work.”

He also emphasized that a good compliance and management culture is important for achieving an equal level of success in the future.

Transocean rig crews also receive letters from third-party service companies, such as the Expro Group that sent accolades to the Sedco 704 – U.K. North Sea, for teamwork and a fantastic attitude.

“Integration of service providers and all new people to the rig contributes greatly to the ‘One Team’ approach,” said Gordon Coull, Rig Manager, Performance. “All personnel are made to feel welcome onboard the 704 and assured that any and all assistance required will be forthcoming.”

Coull said the One Team approach starts at the top. “Strong leadership is a key aspect of the 704’s success. Our offshore supervisors not only see their role as being mentors to our own crews but also solution providers to our customers,” he said. Coull also pointed out the rig’s safety culture. “Our safety committee fosters the safety performance of our rig. They involve themselves daily in operations and take their responsibilities seriously,” Coull said. “No one looks to be singled out for individual praise or recognition. They very much see themselves as part of the team.”    

Keeping Customers Informed

The Dhirubhai Deepwater KG2 (KG2) is a newbuild less than two years in operation and has already set the current world water-depth record —10,194 feet (3,107 meters) of water offshore India working for Reliance Industries. The drillship’s capabilities and experienced crew keep it in high demand.

“As the assignments are back to back, each customer needs information on when a well will finish. We have worked with the customers to help them with smooth hand overs between assignments. Most of the effort is on keeping people informed, working with the customers to take care of their needs (even if the assignment has not started) and making each feel like they are the only customer we have,” said Walter Sheffield, Rig Manager, Performance, KG2.

Sheffield added it’s important to answer a customer’s question as soon as possible. “If you know it will take a while to compile information, let them know you are working on their query, but it will take a few days to get the answers.”

Good customer service also means delivering on efficiency. The KG2 team has helped customers to more efficiently manage mud volumes because of the drillship’s large storage capacity, limiting the need for boats and storage in town. The team also makes recommendations on how customers can save time and run more efficiently.

“A customer wanted to use our 6 5/8" landing string for drilling to save time picking up the drilling string. Our offshore team reviewed the well program and recommended we use our other 6 5/8" string. Our reasons included faster connection time and easier handling while tripping. Both save the customer time,” Sheffield explained.

“Our team delivers outstanding performance because they know it is possible, they believe they can do it, and they want to do better each time we drill a well.”

Taking the Time to Plan

Long before the outstanding well flow of Anadarko’s Barquentine – 2 well offshore Mozambique, the Deepwater Millennium team set the stage for success while the drillship was in the Port Elizabeth shipyard for a number of projects and maintenance work. It was there that Rig Managers Mike Long, Howly Williams and Ah Pew, along with project team management, sat down with the rig crews and mapped out the flow of work and manpower requirements and empowered active support and ownership from the rig’s crews.

“We decided from the very start that the rig and management team would manage the shipyard timeline and the effort was focused to maintain a certain culture and attitude that would support the completion of the shipyard work in a decided amount of time,” said Randy Atwood, Branch Manager, Deepwater Millennium.

All of this set the tone for the crews as they came out of the shipyard having accumulated 382,000 total project man-hours and a zero total recordable incident rate, on time and within budget. “The operational success began with the crews planning to go straight into completions mode out of the shipyard and ensure that operationally we didn’t impact the customer’s critical timeline,” Atwood said.

On the Barquetine – 2 well, the rig’s crews and Anadarko’s service providers all worked side by side to achieve excellent results. The well flowed at an equipment constrained rate of 90 to 100 million cubic feet per day with minimal pressure drawdown.

“It is with great pride and personal accountability that Team Millennium strives to deliver outstanding performance as we focus on customer satisfaction,” Atwood said. It’s important to work together and align both Anadarko and Transocean into Team Millennium. Together we can accomplish great things.”

Looking Out for Each Other

When you’re onboard the Trident 15 in Thailand, you’re family, no matter if you work for Transocean, Chevron or a service provider.  “The rig has a strong team culture and takes the family approach. We’re one rig, one team, a big family regardless of which company we work for. If you arrive onboard the T15, you will be part of the family and each family member will look after each other,” said Chidpon Jantarawaranyoo, Sector Manager, Thailand and Myanmar.

Jantarawaranyoo said Transocean leads the way to drive safety and operational performance.

“We take the lead to plan and follow up with other service provides onboard to ensure every task is well planned and executed. For example, the Toolpusher always ensures other service providers are ready for the upcoming operation at the worksite,” he said. 

“We understand the customer’s focus, which is safety and efficiency. The efficiency will be achieved by good planning and safe execution. We embrace this to the rig culture.” 

For more from our customers, read their appreciation letters here.