The oil and gas industry is set to spend close to $50-billion on IT by 2016.

IDC Energy Insights has released its predictions of this industry, offering insight and perspective on long-term trends along with new themes on the horizon.

The top 10 predictions are:

* With the change in the global energy supply chain, oil and gas companies will put more focus on resiliency;

* IT security will remain the CIO’s top concern, with a growing focus on process control security;

* CIOs will concentrate on innovation, analytics and sourcing to keep the attention of business;

* Drilling risk mitigation and production optimization will drive further adoption of big data and analytics, new models for machine-to-machine connectivity and field mobility;

* Safety and accountability will shape the relationship between owners and service companies;

* The concept of smart pipeline will start to gain significant momentum in most regional markets;

* Operational design moves to 3D;

* Asset integrity will take the spotlight in asset life-cycle management;

* Cloud will see an uptick in adoption, mainly for quick deployment and flexibility; and

* IT spending in oil and gas will increase from $37,6-billion in 2011 to $49,4-billion in 2016.

“Dramatic changes in supply and demand have altered the oil and gas industry and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. To meet these challenges, oil and gas companies need to strive for operational resiliency, deliver productivity, enhance product, process and people reliability and facilitate superior resource performance,” says Jill Feblowitz, vice-president of IDC Energy Insights.

“Following upon digital oilfield and integrated operations initiatives, we see the industry stepping up investment in new information and communications technology to support these objectives.”