Top People, Top Skills
CBW Resource Consultants
Staying flexible and agile in ever-changing times is a mantra that many companies have adopted to stay in business. CBW Resource Consultants is no exception.
Based in Calgary, CBW Resource Consultants provides Engineering, Design, Field Supervision, and Total Project Management on Construction, Drilling and Completion Projects. CBW’s clientele includes numerous small, medium and large oil and gas producers. Business in Focus spoke with partners Ken Kindjerski, Dustin Kinch and Ed Besuijen about the company and its plans for the future.
Founded in February, 2000 as Culshaw, Beardsworth and Ward Resource Consultants (hence the initials CBW), the company has evolved over time to provide a number of services. CBW now offers consulting and field supervision services to clients operating in Canada, the USA and overseas. The company has a broad range of conventional drilling and completion experience with particular expertise in projects such as Shallow Gas, Coalbed Methane (CBM) Wells, Cavern Storage Wells, Horizontal Underbalanced Operations, Deep Foothills Hydrogen Sulfide Operations, Heavy Oil Wells, Horizontal Stac Frac Projects, and Disposal Wells, as well as regulatory compliance and filing.
Mr. Kindjerski explains why CBW has been so successful even when faced with the many changes in the energy industry. “The industry has changed over time,” he acknowledges. “You have to be very adaptive. When we first started, everyone was into vertical wells then horizontal and then horizontal underbalanced when gas prices were cheaper; that was all the rage back in the day. We have done lots of underbalanced drilling up in Northeast British Columbia. Staying with developing technologies will help provide a stronger business plan when working in the oil industry. The new horizontal stac frac applications have increased production capabilities on reservoirs that were deemed uneconomical; industry has jumped into this technology and revived a lot of old depleted oil fields. Due to economic criteria, horizontal drilling became more viable, which worked out pretty well, so companies that didn’t adapt were left behind. Being with the times and being on the cutting edge works well for CBW.”
CBW consists of two business streams; Project Management for engineering and operations is the first, while the second business stream serves to supply supervisors to larger oil companies who don’t have enough staff for a particular project.
“We spend a lot of time tracking supervisors, going to well sites, and managing operations on location,” explains Mr. Besuijen. “When companies don’t have enough people in their office, we’re able to find competent people for that on a short term basis.”
“A lot of time, when getting involved in projects, there is a need for a special skill,” says Mr. Kindjerski. “Sometimes, it can be a challenge to find people to fill those needs, but with our exposure to the industry, we have a lot of people with experience in the business.”
Mr. Besuijen recalls a story in which a client called about an audit on a drilling operation in Turkmenistan. With their existing personnel, they were facing costs that were triple than estimated, the timeframe out of whack. CBW was able to find a skilled contractor to do the work who wrote and spoke Russian, communicated well with clients, and helped solve the issues on that particular operation.
“On another project, a client received a letter from a land owner in Ontario where several of our site supervisors had drilled and completed a well on their land. The letter commented on the professional way our supervisors conducted themselves and how well they treated everyone; they stated they would welcome our group back on their land if they were asked.”
CBW Resource Consultants oversees projects from the initial stages of well planning to the completion of the project, using technically skilled and professional personnel. Every step of the way, the company maintains its commitment to providing services in the safest, most cost effective manner possible, with a personalized approach to meet the varied needs of clients. “What our company stands for is adaptability and our ability to roll with the punches,” shares Mr. Kindjerski.
The company has ventured into cavern storage, used to store hydrocarbon products, and has successfully completed 30 plus projects. “We are involved with all phases from cavern planning to solution mining, which is a completely different venture from our other services. That business seems to be very popular nowadays,” says Mr. Kindjerski. Future plans include expanding into the United States, implementing horizontal stac frac systems from BC to Saskatchewan, and seeking additional opportunities globally. However, the company plans to grow carefully and sustainably.
In all its work, CBW aims to provide the most cost-effective solutions, distinguishing the company from its competitors. “The only reason why these projects are viable is due to the ability to get production at a lower cost; there are lots of companies that try to do this, but if they can’t deliver on that, the economics may be lost and the project is not viable.”
CBW Resource Consultants has faced its share of challenges, both internal and external. While the company hires highly skilled workers, addressing the age gap in the labour force has been an issue. “It is sometimes difficult to find people depending on the time of year,” shares Mr. Kindjerski. “The younger labour force is more accepting of the work, but there is a big gap in the middle [age group], say from 35 to 45 year olds. That is the age when people are looking to have a more stable income and family life. There have been major company layoffs; a lot of situations are beyond our control when this industry is cyclical in nature.”
CBW meets these challenges by working on multiple projects and maintaining a high workload across different specialties – when one industry sector is facing lean times, another might be booming. The company highly values its employees and contractors, as well. “It takes so much time to find good people, we try our best to retain them,” says Mr. Besuijen. “When we have work available, we know who has the skill set required and are able to match them to the client’s needs.”
The CBW team includes professional engineers and technologists. Many senior personnel members have over 40 years of industry experience and have held positions such as drilling and completions managers for major oil companies, offshore operations engineers, offshore drilling supervisors, domestic drilling and completions supervisors, and have managed pipeline and production operations.
Of the company’s Engineering division, Mr. Kindjerski says that, “We excel on that side. We are able to design, execute and deliver. “Our engineering side is really great at working with midsized operators,” agrees Mr. Kinch. “We supply people to external operators that are large, medium sized, or small.”
“We have clients that produce up to 15,000 barrels per day and realize the need to be cost effective and deliver on time,” says Mr. Kindjerski.
The principles and standards of careful attention to detail is another area in which CBW excels. “It goes right from filing data and managing paper to outright execution on the field,” says Mr. Kindjerski. “It boils down to the skill set you employ; you can execute operations well, but if you don’t manage the paperwork and keep the government satisfied, you’re in trouble with them. We have to meet regulatory standards by the branches and agencies that establish them. There are many different jurisdictions, and each one has different needs and criteria. We are able to satisfy that because we’re cognizant of the information and data required for each jurisdiction.”
This keen attention to detail in combination with working collaboratively with key industry partners – including vendors, suppliers and contractors – have helped the team run successful operations. “What we try to do is set up alliances with good service providers,” shares Mr. Besuijen said. “Over the long term, if you have a good rapport with a supplier, they’ll provide you with good services in return.”
Whether it’s finding the right personnel to conduct complex projects or determining what type of project to tackle with oil and gas producers of various sizes, CBW Resource Consultants has demonstrated the ability to be flexible and adaptable to meet the needs of its diverse clients. Mr. Kinch sums up why CBW has been so successful, and identifies the strategies that will help the company see success for years to come.
“Our experience level and leadership on engineering, project management and sales have made CBW successful,” he says. “We’re top heavy with horsepower that possesses a high skill set, which allows us to take on challenging projects and successfully complete them.”
For information about CBW Resource Consultants, please visit http://www.cbwresourceconsultants.com/