Case Study

Centralization boosts performance for an energy giant

OilCo wanted to shift from a geocentric model to a global model to improve performance, but doing so presented significant cultural and logistical challenges. Bain helped OilCo map roles, update critical systems, standardize key processes and communicate clearly to business units. The result: The new, centralized organization was implemented ahead of schedule and with minimal disruption to the business.

  • min read

The Story

The Situation

  • OilCo* is a leading global integrated oil and gas company
  • OilCo wanted to shift one of its major divisions from a geocentric model to a globally-centralized functional model to improve performance by:
    • Improving capital efficiency through increased standardization in development process (design one, build many)
    • Better allocating scarce capabilities and addressing shortage of skilled workforce
    • Improving best practice sharing, deepening operational expertise and raising safety standards across the organization
  • However, the de-centralized organizational structure had not changed for more than 20 years, and the scale and scope of change presented significant cultural and logistical challenges
  • Bain was hired to work with 13 regional business units to design and implement the new organizational structure

Our Approach

Design and groundwork

  • Develop central organization template and case for change
  • Create and iterate business unit organization design, based on central guidance
  • Map existing roles to new organization, adhering to all HR and legal standards

Change management

  • Plan towards implementation of new organization
  • Key areas of work:
    • Project management of change management program
    • Process definitions for major processes affected by reorganization
    • Risk management and assurance
    • Critical systems updates needed ahead of implementation
    • Communications to the business unit concerning the reorganization
    • Ensure consistent application across business units and lay out change key performance indexes

Long-term planning

  • Develop action plan to embed new organization


Our Recommendations

Drive a rigorous change management that takes an holistic approach toward organizational restructure.


The Results

The new organization was implemented in all units ahead of deadline with minimal disruption to existing business.

The clarified implications of the new org and increased role and process standardization helped:

  • Define process maps and decision rights for selected key processes
  • Document responsibilities for key roles

There are plans in place to continue transition over the next one to two years.

* We take our clients' confidentiality seriously. While we've changed their names, the results are real.

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