Lessons Learned is a Serious Business

Oil & Gas

– Continuous improvement, reduced risk and safe operations. These are some of Archer’s main objectives when sharing knowledge and experience across the industry through Lesson Learned,  says HSE Advisor Henning Feyling.

Global oil services company Archer operates in 40 locations in over 19 countries. Archer provides drilling services, well integrity & intervention, plug & abandonment and decommissioning to its upstream oil and gas clients –  all with a strong focus on safety.

– The industry used to be criticized for not being very good at documenting and sharing valuable experiences from unwanted incidents. Although we at Archer had routines and systems taking care of this before we started using Lesson Learned, they were not as effective and too dependent on individual employees, Feyling explains.

In everyday use
Archer uses Lesson Learned to document all accidents, incidents and other risk related situations. The threshold is low, Feyling continues: – If there are lessons to learn from it, we document it in writing with pictures and video – and then share it.

When entered into to the Lesson Learned database, content is easily searchable. – When for example looking for incidents connected to the Derrick drilling tower, you will get several hits. You can then refine your search to get an overview of all incidents involving “falling object”.  If this is of special interest to you or your crew, you can subscribe to all future information entries on this topic.


Archer conducts operations all over the world.

In addition to sharing unwanted incidents both internally and externally, the application is also used to document and distribute technical information through so called “Tech Bulletins”. – This is for our internal use, Feyling explains. I do not know if other companies do the same, but for us it has proven to be an efficient way of sharing information.

Lesson Learned is used daily throughout the company. – Drilling crews review posts and have discussions before going off on a job. The application is used during safety meetings offshore and when preparing  a project.

From the top
Sharing internally is important. But sharing externally is what gives Lesson Learned its real value. – A number of companies logos are displayed on the opening page. This signals the importance of cooperation. An annual user forum is an important venue where decisions about Lesson Learned are made and additional information is shared. Just by using an application like this, we increase the awareness of safety.


HSE Advisor in Archer, Henning Feyling.

– As an administrator, I make the decision about what to share with other companies. In Archer, the attitude is that sharing knowledge is important for safe operations and risk reduction throughout the industry. We benefit from information entered by competitors and partners in the same way we want them to learn from us. This mind set comes from the very top of the organisation. To make our experience, also from unwanted incidents, available to others might save lives, says HSE Advisor Henning Feyling.