Abu Dhabi Company For Onshore Oil Operations (ADCO)

Abu Dhabi Company For Onshore Oil Operations (ADCO)

The ADCO (Abu Dhabi Company for Onshore Oil Operations) is an oil exploration company in the Emirates of Abu Dhabi founded on 2nd December 1971. It is one of the companies forming ADNOC (Abu Dhabi National Oil Company). Its first discovery of oil for commercial purposes was in 1960 at Bab, but actual drilling and exportation started in 1963. It was first known as ADPC (Abu Dhabi Petroleum Company Ltd). In 1973 the government of Abu Dhabi emirates bought 25 percent of the company shares and increased them to 60 percent in the next year. The company was incorporated as ADCO in 1978 as stipulated in Law No. 14 for 1978 and starting from February the following year it was given the mandate to operate in the concession areas. The concession areas that it operates cover a distance of 21,000 km2. Its main operations include exploration, production, development, export and transfer of gas and oil from shallow coastal water and onshore oil fields. Currently it runs six oil and gas fields in Aab, Sahil, Bab, Bu Hasa, North-East Bab, and Shah. Its storage and shipping facility is located at Jebel Dhanna. The company in its 2012 report announced a daily production rate of 1,344,991 barrels in 1,217 oil wells in its concession areas. In the same year it reported that its number of employees totaled 5,879 (“Abu Dhabi Company for Onshore Oil Operations”, n.d).

Its operation is organized into five key blocks. These includes South east asset, Bab & Gas Assest, Buhasa/Huwala/BQ Asset, NEB Asset and Terminals, Pipleine & Oil/Gas Movements Operation Asset. Close to a third of the company total production output comes from South East Asset. This covers 7525 km2. It comprises of five key field including Asab, Shah, Sahil,Qusahwira and Mender. The Bab asset represents Bab filed. It accounts for 75 percent of the total non associated and associated gas produced by the company. Bu Hasa includes three major fields Bu Hasa, Huwaila, and Bida Al-Qemzan (BQ). 40 percent of the company daily production is generated by these fields. The NEB comprises of three productions filed including Al Dabb’iya, Shanayel, and Rumaitha. It accounts for 8 percent of the company production. The terminal, pipeline & oil/ gas movements operation asset, acts as the company door to international market. This asset is responsible for management of the main shipment terminal, Jabel Dhana as well as the company main pipeline network, which Is about 704 Kms (“Abu Dhabi Company for Onshore Oil Operations”, n.d)..

Top management at ADCO recognizes the importance of team work in fostering employees’ effectiveness and productivity. They have well developed clubs and recreation team to bring their employees together. The aim is to create a social and friendly working environment through the concept of ‘ADCO Family’. In order to manage different clubs in the organization, ARB-ADCO Recreation Board was established in 1997 and mandated with this responsibility. The goal of forming ARB and different clubs was to promote the spirit of teamwork and extend these values to the entire organization. The firm employees are able to meet and form stronger bonds. The ARB now is composed of many types of clubs including badminton, basket & volleyball, equestrian club, football, ladies club, marine club, socio-education, tennis, snooker, karate, bowling and squash. Each of these teams has its own history. For instance, the badminton club brings together people with shared interest. The team participates in competition with employees from other ADNOC subsidiary companies. Each year one of these companies is charged with the responsibility of preparing the tournament. The tournament brings together employees from different companies and their families.

Factors that can affect job design in this organization include those related to task like work practices and ergonomics as well as behavioral factors like availability of feedback. The organizational factors such as policies adopted by the firm for female employees and employee family members can all have an impact on the productivity. The company claims that it values workplace diversity and that its people comprises of people from different backgrounds. However, on closer look the company leadership is male dominated with males being appointed as the heads of its 24 governance bodies (ADCO Sustainability report, 2012). With the number of female employees employed by the company increasing absence of female in leadership position is likely to affect their productivity in the company. The company policy with regard to work from remote location is also another factor affecting job design. The company permits employees to work from remote locations through the extranet service provided by the firm. The company also employs some employees on contractual basis. As a result, it has different policies in treating these employees. For instance they do not enjoy similar employee benefits as those enjoyed by the permanent employees. These employees management is done by the contractors. Safety is a major issue affecting workers productivity in the oil exploration industry. Therefore, ergonomic consideration in the design of company facilities and tools being used is a major factor that can affect productivity. As indicated by its operation decentralization the company has a wide organization structure.

To improve ADCO and make its job design more efficient there it is important to review some of the policies. Top management should consider job enrichment opportunities in the firm. The firm should for instance eliminate factors that can lead to dissatisfaction in the workplace like absence of female on leadership positions. It should reconsider its administration and policy strategy to ensure that female voices are represented in the highest echelon. Addressing this can also motivate women because it will create room for them to improve their productivity because there is a possibility of moving upward. Apart from that the company should review the provision of working from remote location because this can lead to lower productivity. Fostering teamwork is better than giving employee an opportunity to work from remote locations. This is because it fosters employee innovativeness. The company should also take into consideration employee safety requirements when designing its facilities to improve productivity. Women in particularly are less disadvantaged because they do not have appropriate safety gear though the company is moving towards this direction. Lastly, due to its wide organization structure the company the company will require effective supervisory measures. This is to ensure that employees are getting timely and positive feedbacks with regard to their work. As the company like many other in Abu Dhabi pursue Emiratization strategy in the workforce (ADCO Sustainability report, 2012). Management should consider opportunities for mentoring and coaching for the younger employees entering in the workforce. They can also consider having a job rotation strategy where such employees are moved to different specialized jobs as opposed to staying in one to give them a broader perspective of the organization and stimulate their interest.


Abu Dhabi Company for Oil Operations (ADCO). About Us. Retrieved on Nov 21, from:

Abu Dhabi Company for Onshore Oil Operation Sustainability Report 2012. Retrieved on Nov 21, from:

Rebecca J.
Rebecca J.
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