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TM ONE Smart Solution, serving Digital Malaysia – Maznan Deraman

August 30, 2021

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Modernising societies

Maznan Deraman
Head of Innovative Solutions & Cyber Security Services of TM ONE

The world, as we know it, is rapidly transforming into a planet that pushes the boundaries of technological advancements for the better. Do a quick Google search, and you would find that there is no shortage of global discussions on digitalisation, Internet of Things (IoT) and connected devices (Machine-to-Machine – M2M) being the keys to unlocking a smarter, more data-driven society.

Global societies have become accustomed to the advent of technology and are demanding for greater interconnectedness. Smart ecosystems are growing in popularity among cities as governments use integrated information and technology to help enterprises, citizens, and public organisations deal with the challenges of urbanisation, safety, and sustainability.

Traditional civilisations have struggled with building smart ecosystems because, in the past, digital technologies were mere tools in ‘silo’ environments. What we need now is to link digital technologies together so that these tools can communicate and share information across virtual boundaries. This step ultimately creates what Japan’s vice-minister of policy coordination, Yasuhiko Taniwaki calls “a system of systems”.

In today’s era, societies have the luxury of learning from decades of digital experience to invent and leverage new technologies in information technologies (IT) and operational technology (OT) such as 5G, IoT, M2M communications to build smart ecosystems successfully. What was once invisible is now clear. Companies will take a proactive approach to construct smart ecosystems, fundamentally to enable greater visibility and better collection, management and utilisation of the abundance of data to assist us in decision making.

With the real-time transmission of information, governments and nations have the opportunity to unleash new levels of innovation, efficiency, customer experience and resiliency across various industries, from manufacturing and utility to healthcare, education and public safety.

Digitalisation in Malaysia

Despite the potential of smart ecosystems in shaping a data-savvy future and the strength of the local electrical and electronics (E&E) industry, we at TM ONE recognise that Malaysia’s uptake situation can be further accelerated. Various government bodies, such as the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI), Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) and the Economic Planning Unit (EPU), have announced strategic roadmaps and national policies to promote the adoption of digital technologies. However, Malaysia is only beginning to realise the potential of smart ecosystems for enabling the next digital revolution, all while battling the worryingly low digital adoption rates in the Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) market (as stated in the World Bank Malaysia report, 24th Malaysia Economic Monitor: Weathering the Surge).

Several attributes cause the low development of smart ecosystems. These include the high CAPEX requirement for such technologies, coupled with an overall low awareness of the solutions and their associated benefits. Due to these issues, local SMEs and organisations take an overly cautious approach to analysing such business cases and refuse to shift away from the conventional without significant returns to their investments. Other major challenges include infant levels of customer readiness, low urgency in embracing emerging technologies, sparse tech-talent gaps in the local workforce, and the awareness of a trusted digital enabler partner.

TM ONE Smart Solution, serving digital Malaysia

To tackle these localised challenges and support the digital aspirations of the nation, we launched an end-to-end portfolio of smart services in 2019 under the digital application service pillar. With years of experience in digitalisation, TM ONE understands that the key to creating actual value in this area boils down to three (3) vital elements: having a leading smart services vision, integrating ready-made blueprints and pre-architected solutions, and providing managed services for better lifecycle management, technology refresh and business sustainability.

We aim to serve digital stakeholders, including societies, businesses and the government, by segregating products into several clusters: a smart premise and city, smart agriculture and healthcare, smart industry, digital platforms, and enterprise applications. These integrated products serve numerous industry verticals, including utilities, city planning, manufacturing, real estate, agriculture, transportation, defence, and public-shared services.

Our smart services solution operates on a robust operational framework, encompassing connectivity, security, cloud computing, professional services, and managed services. Flexible in-house technology teams can tailor different elements such as physical interfaces, communication and gateway, data presentation, and 3rd party integration services to match unique customer needs. Each solution is described as end-to-end and enabled by core digital components. These include sensors and end-devices, gateways and controllers, connectivity platforms, cloud and backend infrastructure, and analytics applications and interactive dashboards.

Coupled with our open next-gen Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) and DevKit, customers and partners can now co-create new services and solutions exclusively in the TM ONE digital ecosystem. These features have the support of our core products, in-house application development capabilities, and managed services. The one-stop platform approach provides customers with peace of mind while helping them discover a range of suitable technology products from a single provider.

In order to really penetrate the local market, we have decided to introduce several pricing models to reduce the financial burden of the high initial CAPEX investment. Customers can enrol in a subscription model that emphasises pay-by-use. Alternatively, they can use a unique profit-sharing model that allows financially strapped entities to only pay when they see actual cost savings and returns on their investments.

Smart solutions are dynamic and flexible. Gratifying the right needs and requirements with the right solutions, organisations can unleash greater innovation, enhance customer experience, and improve visibility, profitability, and resiliency. This in turn will provide them with the means to unlock a new generation of revenue streams, efficiency measures, and increase productivity with people-empowering strategies.

Celebrating TM ONE’s smart solution and its customers

By offering such an attractive commercial package, we have managed to onboard several Malaysian entities onto the platform since 2019. With our TM ONE smart solution, customers could share great success stories in their respective industry verticals. One recent example is a smart traffic light project with the Malaysian Public Works Department (JKR) in several states in Malaysia to improve the ‘greenwave’ effects as part of the Smart Traffic Analytics and Recognition System (STARS). The move improved traffic flow by 50% at junctions controlled by STARS. This increased efficiency level is the result of intelligence traffic data monitoring at each junction, deep analytics of waiting time and congestions, and calculated fairness.

Another successful use case is the implementation of Smart Street Light Intelligent Management System (SLIMS) in the Darul Hana housing project in Kuching, which is part of the state capital’s smart city plan. City officials were able to manage street lights remotely using real-time data from environmental sensors to ensure optimised performance, quality of service, and environmental sustainability. Not to mention, all these happened while shrinking energy costs by engaging automated environmental triggers offered as part of the smart scheduling feature.

Securing a digital future for Malaysia

As part of our ethos to Taking Transformation Forward by embedding intelligence into critical infrastructure and everyday objects, our team will continue to educate our customers on the vast potential of the smart services ecosystem in various vertical segments. In addition, TM ONE is taking a new approach to shift the traditional technology-centric conversation to a more customer-centric problem-solving mindset. Instead of simply selling technologies and benefits, we want to engage our customers with robust and customised business cases to ensure profitable technology investments.

In a nutshell, the national adoption of smart ecosystems is essential towards propelling Malaysia to the forefront of Digital ASEAN. With Malaysia housing the most digital natives in Southeast Asia, the general society will be looking for greater digital convenience and customised products in the coming future. With the capabilities of TM ONE and the easy access of our Smart Services Solution in a growing digital market, it won’t take long before we experience the rapid rise of smart ecosystems in Malaysia. 


Designing future citizen services – Inspirations from our youth

September 16, 2021

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On the eve of Malaysia’s 64th National Day, I had the opportunity to engage with a few of our youth on their expectations for future citizen services. It was inspiring to see the passion, energy, and ideas flowing as they aspire to build a better tomorrow. The conversation helped me gain useful perspectives on what is important and possible next steps for us to build the next generation of citizen services. Here are my five (5) key takeaways from the session:

  1. A high benchmark in term of expectations – This generation has grown in a digital-first world and are the recipients of great customer experience (CX) from some of the world’s best brands. In the case of these six youngsters, it is best exemplified by Grab, Revolut, Etiqa, BigPay, AirAsia and Foxtons. Each of these companies has established incredible benchmarks in delivering intuitive, frictionless, personalised, efficient, and completely digital services. This is now the minimum benchmark for the delivery of next-generation citizen experience. Anything lower will only result in an unhappy citizen.
  2. A customer-centric view – The service delivery must be designed from the lens of the citizen and his or her life journey – from womb to tomb – all integrated into one place. The user or a citizen should be the centre and focus of service delivery. As the citizen traverses through the various stages of life, he or she should be able to access the services through a unified channel. This is in stark contrast to the way citizen services are delivered by individual agencies, requiring us to engage with each of them separately.
  3. Build the foundational layer – The first step would be to build and integrate some very essential components that are fundamental to digital experiences as we know them. Some of these include:
    1. Mobile-first and digital-first approach
    2. Single Sign-On for all services
    3. Consistent user interface/user experience (UI/UX) across all federal, state and municipal agency services
    4. Data-once – citizens need to enter data only once; it is shared subsequently by the various agencies
    5. Predictive – anticipate and pre-empt citizen needs
    6. Omni-channel and One-stop customer service
  4. Develop a digital coalition – Further sustained innovation in citizen services can be achieved only through open innovation and co-creation among government agencies, technology partners, citizens and the start-up ecosystem. Human needs and behaviour are extremely complex and unpredictable. Co-creation enables the delivery of better services in a dynamic manner by leveraging the capacity to use resources of a wider ecosystem. It should be treated as a fundamental requirement for the delivery of next-generation citizen services.
  5. Driving industry transformation – It was interesting to hear the youth pointed out that the biggest impact of digital on the country will reside in our ability to transform some of the essential citizen services, such as education and healthcare services. This proves that digital can help improve access to every section of the society. They also discussed about the urgent need to modernise our core infrastructure (such as ports) so that we can be competitive in the region.
Imri Mokhtar, Group Chief Executive Officer, Telekom Malaysia Berhad

I was immensely inspired – every youth on the panel was part of a social initiative. Beyond just sharing ideas, they involved themselves actively and contributed to help build a better Malaysia. The onus is now on us in the government and institutions to channel that same energy into driving collaborative projects and creating world-class citizen services.

Looking forward to this exciting future. Selamat Hari Malaysia!!

Rehabilitation of Nation’s Healthcare
Transforming Healthcare through the Post Pandemic Era

September 13, 2021

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The COVID-19 outbreak has placed a massive strain on the global healthcare sector’s workforce, infrastructure, and supply chain. Medical practitioners are exhausted, and healthcare systems are forced beyond limits to the brink of breaking down. Despite the many challenges, a decrease in revenues and rising operational costs, healthcare players continue to push forward, committed in providing high quality healthcare services to patients. Nonetheless, the pandemic has exposed the shortcomings of healthcare systems worldwide. Striking at the nation-building heart of many countries, the pandemic has significantly disrupted social, political, economic and healthcare systems around the world.

However, we have also seen the emergence of foundational shifts arising from COVID-19. Needle mover initiatives are being made globally by both public and private sectors, recognising the need to relook healthcare ecosystem modernisation towards a comprehensive, integrated digitisation and digitalisation. New coping strategies, involving the accelerated adoption of telemedicine, smart health and other technologies, are considered as imperatives. Amid these dynamics, public sectors, healthcare providers, players, and other stakeholders around the globe are being challenged to pivot, adapt, and innovate at speed to amplify the reach and effectiveness of healthcare.

The Digital Front Door 

A smart health approach typically makes use of interconnected technologies to embrace the entire spectrum of healthcare providers, consumers and researchers to ensure the delivery of cutting-edge care that is comprehensive, collaborative, efficient – recognising the needs of patients and their families as well as healthcare practitioners and administrators. The use of telemedicine, complemented by analytics, artificial intelligence (AI), data protection and scalable cloud ecosystem is gaining traction. The pandemic has opened doors for AI and other digital technologies to solve complex clinical and non-clinical problems.

A recent report published by McKinsey & Company highlights that telehealth utilisation has stabilised at levels 38X higher than before the pandemic. Similarly, consumer and provider attitudes toward telehealth have also improved. Investment in virtual care and digital health have broadly skyrocketed. Additionally, virtual healthcare models and business models are continuing to evolve.

However, some hurdles, such as concerns around technology security, need to be addressed. TM ONE has innovated a complete ecosystem of healthcare solutions, which is modular and interoperable with external systems connected via TM ONE Cloud α (pronounced as Cloud Alpha) and TM ONE Cybersecurity (CYDEC) to ensure world class security. McKinsey points out that, the ‘digital front door’ will not be closing as patients and providers have appreciated and embraced the convenience and flexibility of this type of care especially during the healthcare crisis. As we gradually move through and onwards into recovery, a key concern for any health system will be scaling and sustaining these digital interactions.

Driven by Human Experience

Consumers expect industry leaders to leverage on the momentum created in the pandemic to continue to propel healthcare forward, especially as good healthcare services is a key hallmark of sustainable future ready nation building. According to Deloitte, collaborations and the human experience are two (2) of six (6) pressing sector issues that are expected to shape and navigate the healthcare industry into and through the evolving ‘next normal’.

Healthcare technologies, which especially appeal to the digital first generation, has inspired deeper levels of activity, engagement and enhanced patient experience. A visit to the doctor is already a worrying experience for some without having to deal with the paperwork, hours of waiting time and patient care. On a wider front, consumers are using technology to monitor their health, measure fitness, order prescriptions and schedule doctor’s appointments. Eighty percent (80%) of consumers report that they are most likely to have another virtual visit even post pandemic. Pandemic experience has shown that the best path to effectively enabling digital solutions requires various levels of smart collaboration moving away from siloed record systems. Providing a comprehensive end-to-end integrated patients experience management platform with insights, one which is truly beneficial for consumers and patients — calls for collaborative arrangements, which embrace data platforms, disruptive entrants, public/private partnerships, and health system platforms integration.

TM ONE Healthcare understands the complexities of the healthcare industry. It will simplify the electronic medical records platform, and channel patients, healthcare providers and funders into a single, secured, standardised and cost-effective solution. With extensive experience in rolling out clinic management systems and electronic medical records, together with a dedicated team to maintain and provide adequate support to end users and partners, TM ONE Healthcare will ensure the best experience for all stakeholders.

TM Group CEO in Conversation With The Youth: Designing Future Citizen Services

August 31, 2021

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As consumers, we have all embraced digital services wholeheartedly since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Businesses and Government agencies made great progress in making available digital services needed to ensure limited interruption to our lives. We have all been witness to amazing journeys of change, innovation, and transformation. As citizens and consumers, we have high expectations of new digital experiences. 

In conjunction with Merdeka Day, we decided to engage with the youth to understand their expectations of how citizen services could be more digital in the future. Accordingly, our Group Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of TM, Imri Mokhtar, hosted six (6) youth representing the diversity of Malaysia to hear from them, their expectations, aspirations, and hope for the future of public services.

This article is an edited transcript of the discussion. You can listen to the podcast episode in the upcoming weeks.

The participants:

Rakcana Kardnanithi
Lancaster University, MSc in Economics
Lancaster University, BSc (Hons) Economics & Data Science

Is passionate about leveraging data to solve the world’s biggest challenges. In a recent project, she studied the data on poverty-stricken states in India to help support the distribution of free school meals to students.

William Kiong
UCSI, BA (Hons) Accounting & Finance

Is currently a research analyst with Twimbit. He is passionate about the crypto market and blogging on LinkedIn. He is an avid sportsperson and aspiring entrepreneur. He also contributes his time to a social initiative aimed at empowering young refugees in Malaysia.

Asyraf Naim
LSE, BA (Hons) Accounting & Finance

Is a soon to be central banker and has a deep interest in financial markets, crypto and traditional precious metals. He worked at a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) to help improve access to the best tertiary education institutes in the world.

Sarah Shevaun*
Netherlands Maritime University College, BA (Hons) Maritime Law

A true blue Borneon and is the first President of Educity’s multi-varsity student senate. She conquered her fear of public speaking when she spoke at TedX UoSM in March 2020.

Eeman Mansor*
UiTM, LLB (Hons) Law

Is actively engaged in advocacy work, especially in children’s rights. She currently holds the position of Deputy Country Director of ASEAN Youth Advocacy Network Malaysia.

Mohamad Zulfarhan Ahmad Supiee
Imperial College London, BSc (Hons) Medical Biosciences

A Johorean who is passionate about laboratory research and the field of public health. He is the Vice President of Imperial College Malaysian Society and the Producer of Malaysian Night and is working to help foster bonds among Malaysian students.

Imri Mokhtar
UCL, BEng (Hons) Electronics Engineering
Cambridge Judge Business School, Business & Leadership Programs
Harvard Business School, Business & Leadership Programs

Group CEO, Telekom Malaysia Berhad (TM)
*Currently pursuing

Imri Mokhtar: What is a great customer experience for you? What is the best customer experience you have had so far? 

Rakcana Kardnanithi: Grab – Accessible and efficient.

Asyraf Naim: Revolut – Global personalised banking with great customer care.

Eeman Mansor: BigPay – An integrated view of finances in one picture, at a low currency exchange.

Sarah Shevaun: – Quick and easy car insurance renewal.

William Kiong: – Travel made easy with end-to-end digital service in one app.

Mohamad Zulfarhan Ahmad Supiee: Foxtons (a UK based real estate agency) – Efficient and seamless digital contracts.

Current best customer experience should be the minimum expectation bar for future citizen services”Imri Mokhtar

Imri Mokhtar: What are the areas for improvement in public services today?

Asyraf Naim: A more concise and responsive contact centre.

Mohamad Zulfarhan Ahmad Supiee: Adoption of Cloud to enable real-time digital amendments, instead of redoing forms over the counter.

Eeman Mansor: A uniformed user interface or user experience across different state government agencies websites to make it easy for data entry.

Rakcana Kardnanithi: A unified public service. Most public agencies operate in silos which require us to fill in the same information repeatedly. Data transparency between different government agencies should be the way forward, as well as interacting with each other via Application Programmable Interfaces (APIs).

Sarah Shevaun: A world class digital foundation that will cater to the digital native citizen.

William Kiong: A centralised customer service. We had Urban Transformation Centre (UTC) that centralised most public services at the same place, physically. It is time for our public services to go digital with a single sign-on app.

The way we provide services must change, we need to start from the customer lens and in this instance the rakyatImri Mokhtar

Imri Mokhtar: What would a digitalised Malaysia look like to you?

Sarah Shevaun: For me, a digital Malaysia would be an upgraded port, because that is where our money and economy comes from. Visualise a ghost port, unmanned port where all things digital that utilise massive-scale Internet of Things (IoT) automation and next generation vessel traffic management. Not only will it be more efficient, it will also reduce a lot of government operating expenditure as well.

Rakcana Kardnanithi: Accessible and efficient citizen’s journey. The future is going to be a hundred per cent co-creation and we should leverage this to create beautiful future citizen services.

William Kiong: Digital Malaysia uses information and data. It is the currency of the future. Data transparency across different government departments and agencies. Single sign-on across all government websites.

Mohamad Zulfarhan Ahmad Supiee: I think we need our own Ministry of Health App, where patients no longer need to carry multiple medical record books. Digitalise patient medical records, prescription history, information about their illness and emergency contacts.

Eeman Mansor: I would like to see Digital Malaysia in the sense that it encompasses easy accessibility to education. Using augmented reality, virtual reality, proper digital tools to improve education and provide subsidies to underprivileged students to access technology.

Asyraf Naim: Future Digital Malaysia for me is a convenience issue. Government yearly services should be auto deducted and adoption of AI to proactively help citizens manage their passport, driving license, taxes, etc.

“We need a digital coalition starting from the rakyat, the government and its technology provider to co-create the design process for citizen services. Listening to all the bright ideas from the youth made me feel like a proud father. I can’t wait to see how these youth will lead and transform our country’s future. Let’s together build our digital Malaysia! Happy Merdeka Day”Imri Mokhtar.

PETRONAS, Levelling Up with Digital and Technology

August 30, 2021

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Prominent oil and gas industry player PETRONAS is orchestrating a company-wide digital transformation with a systemic approach. The group intends to achieve its vision of a data-driven organisation as well as its desired business outcomes and value by leveraging disrupting technologies.

Recently, the drive for digitalisation is on the fast track due to the dual impact of the low oil price environment and the pandemic. Digitalisation initiatives are now also part of an industry-wide response towards the growing pressure for cleaner energy. As such, these measures target to achieve two (2) main objectives:

  1. Improving operational efficiency to minimise the downsides of market challenges by protecting liquidity
  2. Achieve business sustainability through new ventures such as new energy and the cleaner production of upstream and downstream operations

This article provides an overview of the digitalisation efforts that PETRONAS has made. The plans executed give insights as to how a large business like PETRONAS manages to introduce digitalisation to navigate the volatile business climate of its industry.

Improving decision-making with cloud-based applications

Partnering with Industrial Software Solution Provider AVEVA Unified Cloud Solution
In order to streamline and simplify business processes, PETRONAS recently partnered with AVEVA to improve the integration across its whole supply chain. Powered by high-performance cloud computing, PETRONAS adopted AVEVA’s Enterprise Crude Knowledge Management solution

A common problem faced by oil and gas operators and industry is that decisions made by the management are often a product of several departments. If the company does not manage these decisions well, it would result in costly workflow disruptions and value leaks.

With the solution adopted from AVEVA, PETRONAS has consolidated crucial information to optimise productivity and streamline business decisions. Using this additional knowledge management platform, teams from different departments can have a unified view, promoting collaboration and understanding. Moreover, this provides a single source of crude oil information across the whole supply chain, ensuring consistent data management across teams.

Cloud computing plays a critical role in enabling the easy management and scale of providing these solutions. Teams can benefit from the performance and stability that cloud computing can provide. Moreover, cloud providers often offer complementary data analytics services,  allowing users to utilise the data collected from their applications fully. More importantly, the adoption of cloud-based applications gives higher flexibility to control costs, which is crucial for navigating difficult business periods.

Introducing Digital Procurement Platform Smart by GEP in 2019

PETRONAS operates in an industry where contracting and procurement plays a pivotal role in ensuring services and materials are up to standards. With large projects, traditional procurement systems often limit the ability for PETRONAS to cater through the proposals. This hampers the ability to make timely decisions. The downsides of these limitations may result in inefficiencies and unrecognised risks from the players involved in delivering the projects.

Recognising this issue, PETRONAS has introduced its very own digital procurement platform for sourcing activities called Smart by GEP in 2019. The product was rolled out in phases and has since been the primary platform for sourcing activities from 2020. The features of the platform allow solution providers to have:

  1. A centralised bid submission platform
  2. Tender clarification services
  3. A singular platform for contractual documents
  4. Streamlined invoice submission
  5. Transparent performance rating

Powered by cloud technology, this unified platform helps PETRONAS by leveraging historical data and external market data to assist in decision making. More importantly, the introduction of Smart by GEP improves the supplier experience to PETRONAS partners.

This paperless system benefits vendors and PETRONAS staff as the procurement process is now more efficient. Furthermore, this system enables the consistent continuation of business proceedings during the pandemic by facilitating work-from-home initiatives.

Deploying Artificial Intelligence (AI) with Cloud

PETRONAS has recently partnered with a fellow oil and gas player Baker Hughes and AI enterprise expert to deploy proprietary BHC3 technology across the group’s digitalisation programmes. Deployed using Microsoft Azure, the BHC3 application improves the maintenance of assets such as gas turbines and control valves via predictive analytics to prevent downtime.

This technology brings value as it has predictive models that detect and alarm operators ahead of time. As a result, PETRONAS now has higher utilisation of resources, a longer equipment life span, and improved operational safety.

Empowering change from the ground-up

Renewing facilities with the Facilities of the Future (FOF) programme

Source: PETRONAS Integrated Report 2020

Other areas in which legacy systems might limit the ability for PETRONAS to achieve its goal of sustainable production is the group’s current facility structures. To tackle this issue, PETRONAS initiated the Facilities of the Future programme in 2017.

The goal of this initiative is to de-risk the introduction of new technologies onto the plants and platforms. With a pilot and scale approach, PETRONAS seeks to work with several technology partners such as TM ONE to experiment with the value of new technologies. Currently, for offshore facility upgrades, PETRONAS is running pilots on its RESAK platform, located in Kerteh, Terengganu. Through controlled pilot projects, successes there are then replicated onto other platforms.

The implementation of these technologies comes with the intention to develop Malaysia’s first remotely operated facility. It covers three (3) main pillars – manpower, control, and automation. By 2023, PETRONAS hopes to achieve the ability to run with unmanned operations, complete remote control, and full automation.

Source: ANYbotics, ANYmal Robots Inspecting PETRONAS Offshore Platform

Some technologies implemented under this programme are:

1. Robotic Inspections (ANYmal)

PETRONAS collaborated with robotics player ANYbotics to deploy autonomous robotic inspections onto its offshore facilities. This deployment would speed up the remote monitoring of offshore sites by having robots conduct industrial inspections consistently. The robot model used, ANYmal C, has high-performance sensors, visual analytics features, and thermography.

After several tests, the PETRONAS robotics team successfully operated a multi-week deployment for ANYmal C, which withstood harsh facility conditions. All data and videos captured are available through a single user interface, including real-time monitoring and autonomous mission setup.

2. Drones Inspection

Through a collaboration with a local start-up Aerodyne, PETRONAS deployed drones to inspect its Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated (RAPID) project. This particular use case extends to their FOF programme, improving inspections on their platforms.

Using a suite of features such as visual, thermal, and LIDAR sensors, the drones provide valuable inspections for hard-to-reach areas. This ability enables PETRONAS to improve the situation awareness of their platforms and have quick access to data to target resources for troubleshooting.

2. Advanced connectivity

PETRONAS would not be able to fully capture high-end tech value without enabling technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT) and 5G. Hence, PETRONAS completed several 5G testbeds to explore the possibilities of a 5G network. In 2020, it successfully equipped the Resak platform with 5G capabilities to facilitate technology testing within the platform. Prior to that deployment, the group also conducted a 5G demonstration project at the Institut Teknologi Petroleum PETRONAS (INSTEP), Kuala Lumpur, to showcase the abilities of 5G.

Key Takeaways from PETRONAS Successes

Operational Excellence through digitalisation

PETRONAS has been aggressive in its pursuit of digitalisation. As a large group, PETRONAS is an example of how legacy businesses can evolve with proper execution and prioritisation for digitalisation. To ensure that digitalisation is effective, companies must have metrics and processes to record the returns on these investments.

For PETRONAS, the move towards digitalisation has been highly fruitful. The combined value realised from its digitalisation initiatives amount to nearly RM2.9 billion in savings recorded in 2020. The group reduced its Unit Production Cost (UPC) from the upstream business by up to 10%. As for the Overall Equipment Effectiveness Rate (OEE), PETRONAS has recorded an OEE rate of 90% across Downstream assets, 97% for domestic refineries, and 96.8% OEE rate for GandNE assets.

Generating value from managed services and technology experts

It is important to note these digitalisation initiatives are not purely executed internally by PETRONAS. When technology becomes complex, even companies as large as PETRONAS face difficulties managing the development, deployment, security, and maintenance of such technologies.

With rapid technological advances, companies have little time to build up the expertise to extract the full potential of these advancements adequately. Moreover, the current shortage of digital talents further amplifies this challenge.

One can take cues from PETRONAS’ successes – the group forged productive collaborations and partnerships with technology players and managed services providers such as AVEVA,, ANYbotics, etc. This strategy eases the ability for PETRONAS to integrate up-to-date technologies. With this approach, PETRONAS can focus entirely on their core businesses without getting distracted by managing the infrastructure of applications.

Other Notable Initiatives

Upskilling workforce with data analytics skills

  • Initiated PETRONAS Integrated Vision for Operation Excellence Technology (PIVOT) for upskilling staff with big data analytics skills

Ensuring safety with predictive analytics and web-based dashboard reporting

  • Analytical dashboard HIRA (HSSE Integrated Risk Assessment) to provide crucial oversight for the management to predict and act proactively to avoid accidents
  • Use of Dynamic Risk Analyser (DRA), a predictive risk-assessment tool that gathers multiple data points using sensors and alarm data to detect potential early failures in petrochemical sites

Leveraging big data analytics for asset management and maintenance

  • Applying Advanced Diagnostic and Prognostic Technology (AdaPT), an automated monitoring solution to predict early signs of mechanical damage
  • Adopting AI-driven advisory for optimising Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) plants, which helps operators handle key parameters in the pre-cooldown phase of an LNG plant start-up

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