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Analysis of Woodside Petroleum a Company in Australia.


Overview of Woodside Petroleum

Business of Woodside Petroleum

Woodside Petroleum operates as an independent oil and gas company based in Australia. The petroleum company apart from having a potential presence in the Australian territory also has developed an international presence in the oil and gas market. The operation of Woodside can be effectively characterised under four different attribute like that of an explorer, developer, and producer and also as an active supplier of petroleum products (Woodside , 2017).

Mission of Woodside Petroleum

Woodside Petroleum operates to fulfil its mission in generating effective returns to its diverse shareholders spread along the international market (Woodside , 2017).

Vision of Woodside Petroleum

The vision of Woodside Petroleum is to develop itself to become an international leader in the oil and gas exploration, development and supply sectors (Woodside , 2017).

Competitive Advantages of Woodside Petroleum

Woodside Petroleum gains competitive advantages in the oil and gas market in Australia and other international countries where it has developed its presence owing to the existence of a significant asset portfolio. Further, the petroleum company also earns the advantage of asset concentration on a geographical basis and also based on parity pricing practices related to exportation of oil and gas products. Woodside Petroleum has also gained the potential of developing an attractive portfolio of low-cost and a longer life of operations to expand its share in the international market. Similarly, the cash flows accruing to Woodside Petroleum being diversified in nature enhances the level of competitive advantage (Grove, 2014).


Strategies used by Woodside Petroleum

The strategies used by Woodside Petroleum are ideally divided along three different themes associated with the maximisation of the value of its core assets, through leveraging its internal capabilities and also based on development and growth of its internal portfolio (Woodside, 2017).

Current Strategies in use by Woodside Petroleum

Woodside Petroleum aims in strategising its operations through enhancing and generating operational effectiveness for generating potential short-term values. It also focuses on generating needed extension to the lives of its producing asset bases and also through promoting development to the company’s contingent resources. Further, the oil exploration, development and supply company also focuses enhancing the capabilities in the existing value chain dimensions and also in its different types of design operations. Woodside Petroleum also works on the development of remote operations from the Pluto Support Centre based in Perth. The same would contribute in lowering down the level of operating cost and also enhance the quality of maintenance. Woodside’s management also focuses on promoting growth and development in its exploration operations across potential regions around the globe while also developing the potential of its regional bases (Woodside, 2017). 

Critique of Business Practices of Woodside Petroleum

In a recent event during 2016, Credit Suisse is observed to have criticised the exploration operations conducted by Woodside Petroleum along the Rakhine Basin based in Myanmar. The criticism was generated owing to the potential spending of around $1.9 billion rendered by the company from 2011 compared to the outcome of only 142 million barrels. The analysts stated that the cost incurred per barrel by the company amounted to $13 where the discovery costs rendered by other global majors in the oil and gas exploration market amounts to $3-$4. The management of Woodside Petroleum had effectively replied in the face of the criticism stating that the exploration activity had contributed to the generation of around 64 million gross gas amounts that would be able to generate a net payment of around 62 million. The above facts reflect the potentiality of conducting exploration operations across Myanmar (Garvey, 2016).

During 2014, Woodside Petroleum gained potential criticism and revolt from its shareholders related to the lack of equal treatment rendered to them based on event of buyback of shares of Royal Dutch. The management of the company focused on inviting and communicating with the shareholders in terms of telephoning and teleconferencing based communication such that the same would generate needed investor support for conducting the buyback operations. Further, the management of Woodside also generated an open letter to the shareholders that stated that the buyback operations of Shell would contribute in the generation of significant amount of franking credits that would be accumulated by the company for future uses (Robins, 2014).


Environmental Analysis of Woodside Petroleum

PESTEL Analysis of Woodside Petroleum

Political Impacts

The openness of trade promoted by the Australian government potentially encouraged Woodside Petroleum in developing its trading partnership with overseas players based in United Kingdom and also along the African continent. Development of partnerships with global players is taken to strengthen its exploration operations (Macdonald-Smith, 2016).

Economic Impacts

The collapse of the oil prices during 2015 potentially affected the revenue margins of Woodside Petroleum. The tumbling nature of oil prices during 2015 required the management of Woodside to announce a write-off of around $400 million although the company had incurred record sales during 2014. The decline in oil prices during 2015 made the shares of Woodside Petroleum to dip by 1.8 percent (Macdonald-Smith, 2015).

Social Impacts

Woodside Petroleum focuses on generating and developing effective collaborations with different external partners and also in rendering needed financial contributions for enhancement of social communities in Australia (Woodside, 2017).

Technological Impacts

Woodside Petroleum continually focuses on developing on its technological and innovation platform. It focuses on generating potential solutions to emerging challenges in the global oil and gas market and also in developing on its competitive advantages through reducing the cycle time and also generating success in its exploration operations. The strategic moves of the company are based along four technological dimensions like subsurface, upstream, downstream and also disruptive technology (Woodside , 2017).

Ecological Impacts

Woodside Petroleum continually focuses on developing an effective risk management based approach for reducing the impacts of environmental risk. It continually develops its partnership with researchers and other local communities. The management also aims at developing and sharing environmental and ecological knowledge with its different collaborators and partners (Woodside , 2017).

Legal Impacts

During 2016, Woodside Petroleum faced a legal dispute owing to the cancellation of a contract related to a production ship. The case was launched by a ship owner in Malaysia that amounted for damages accruing to $283 million as stated by the Supreme Court based in Western Australia (Macdonald-Smith, 2016).

Specific Environment Analysis of Woodside Petroleum


Woodside Petroleum focuses on sustaining effective relationship with its customer base spread along major international markets through generation of effective, reliable and timely deliveries and also through enhancing expertise in the dimensions of marketing and trading (Woodside , 2017).



Woodside Petroleum continually focuses on extending its partnership with external players operating in the scientific, environmental and community development platforms. Development of partnerships with such external players would contribute in enhancing the effectiveness of the company in the global oil and gas market.


Woodside Petroleum operates as an effective company in the oil and gas industry of Australia.


The Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) governs and monitors the compensation and work standards of employees and workers involved with Woodside Petroleum. The union leaders continually influence the management of the company for generation of pay rises and in reducing workplace risks (MUA, 2013).


Woodside Petroleum faces potential competition from other players like Apache Corporation, BHP Billiton and also Santos Limited that tend to operate in the global market for oil and gas. 



Woodside Petroleum aims in enhancing its supplier portfolio mainly governed by Australian LNG and further supported by other Canadian and US supply chain partners (Woodside , 2017).

Internal Environment Analysis of Woodside Petroleum


The operational processes of Woodside Petroleum are essentially divided along its offshore and onshore based operations. The onshore operations of the company essentially focus on conducting large scale exploration and drilling for oil and gas reserves while the offshore operations of the company are carried out for processing and developing and also in distributing the oil and gas products to potential clients (Woodside , 2017).


Woodside Petroleum is recorded to operate based on total employee strength of around 3,456 employees that operate along its Australian petroleum exploration, development and supply chain bases and also along other international and subsidiary platforms. It maintains a strict governing and monitoring policy for helping in the effective governance of its employees’ functions (Woodside , 2017).


The managerial profile of Woodside Petroleum is essentially constituted and headed by the Chief Executive Officer, Vice Presidents and also the Chief Operations Officer. The appointees along the stated roles are observed to have rich experiences in functioning along diverse roles in companies associated with the oil and gas industry (Woodside , 2017).

SWOT Analysis of Woodside Petroleum


Woodside Petroleum gains the advantage for sustaining an effective position and needed competitive advantage in the Australian market. Further, the company constitutes an effective base of oil and gas resources that helps it in competing with other international players. It has needed potential in developing on its technological and research and development platform.


The oil and petroleum company faces threats from international competitors and also other types of legal complaints and cases.


The petroleum company focuses on developing and expanding its offshore and exploration capabilities along different offshore markets spread around the globe. Further, the company also gains needed potential for developing its partnership with international players in the oil and gas industry.


Woodside Petroleum faces potential threat from fall in oil prices like that happened during 2015. It also earns significant threat from the emergence of national calamities while also facing threat from the actions of its competitors.

Organisational Culture of Woodside Petroleum

Values of the Company

Woodside Petroleum operates based on certain specific values. The petroleum company operates in an honest and fair fashion that ideally meets the parameter of integrity. Further, the management of Woodside Petroleum also focuses on rendering needed respect and honour to its employees operating across different segments and levels  (Shi & Wang, 2011). The management lends a hearing ear to the problems, concerns and suggestions rendered by the employees. Woodside Petroleum also aims in operating based on a sustainable fashion such that it focuses on promoting both internal and external growth to its employees and social communities respectively. It also works on saving the natural environment from the impacts of its oil and gas exploration, development and supply chain activities (Ferdman & Sagiv, 2012). Similarly, the petroleum company also focuses on developing and sustaining effective relationship with its business and channel partners across the globe. The management of the petroleum company also focuses on working in a goal oriented fashion such that it monitors and evaluates the operations and functions of its team members and subordinates  (Podsiadlowski, Gröschke, & Kogler, 2013). Finally, the organisational culture of Woodside Petroleum is to focus on promoting growth and excellence based on achieving exceptional results and developing its learning potentials for rendering future excellence (Woodside, 2017).

Inspiring CEOs of Woodside Petroleum

Peter Coleman, the Chief Executive Officer of Woodside Petroleum serves as a transformational leader in the oil and gas company. The CEO mentioned that Woodside Petroleum need not now focus on only conducting acquisitions to sustain its global leadership but needs to continually develop on its technological and innovation platform. Under his leadership the petroleum company has strategized its technological and innovation platform which in turn has enhanced the level of competitive advantage for the organisation (Khanaki & Hassanzadeh, 2010).


The analysis of Woodside Petroleum effectively reflects that the company has not only developed and sustained an effective share in the Australian market but also has partnered with other international players to develop an effective share in the global oil and gas market. The company aims at continually investing on developing its technological expertise to gain needed competitive advantage in the long run.



Ferdman, B.M. & Sagiv, L., 2012. Diversity in Organizations and Cross-Cultural Work Psychology: What If They Were More Connected? Industrial and Organizational Psychology: Perspectives on Science and Practice, 5(3), pp.1-51.

Garvey, P., 2016. Woodside unveils Myanmar gas find. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 17 February 2017].

Grove, N., 2014. 4 reasons to like Woodside and Santos. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 17 February 2017].

Khanaki, H. & Hassanzadeh, N., 2010. Conflict Management Styles: The Iranian General Preference Compared to the Swedish. International Journal of Innovation, 1(4), pp.419-26.

Macdonald-Smith, A., 2015. Oil price taking its toll at Woodside. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 17 February 2017].

Macdonald-Smith, A., 2016. Woodside Petroleum buys into Senegal exploration venture. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 17 February 2017].

Macdonald-Smith, A., 2016. Woodside Petroleum faces $US283m damages claim over ship contract. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 17 February 2017].

MUA, 2013. Crumlin: Oil And Gas Industry Misinformation Has Sinister Aim - See more at: [Online] Available at: [Accessed 17 February 2017].

Podsiadlowski, A., Gröschke, D. & Kogler, M., 2013. Managing a culturally diverse workforce: Diversity perspectives in organizations. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 37, pp.159-75.

Robins, B., 2014. Woodside seeks to head off criticism on Shell deal. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 17 February 2017].

Shi, X. & Wang, J., 2011. Interpreting Hofstede Model and Globe Model: Which Way to Go for Cross-Cultural Research. nternational Journal of Business and Management , 6(5), pp.93-99.

Woodside , 2017. Environment. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 17 February 2017].

Woodside , 2017. Marketing and Trading. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 17 February 2017].

Woodside , 2017. Profile. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 17 February 2017].

Woodside , 2017. Science and Technology. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 17 February 2017].

Woodside, 2017. Our Approach. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 17 February 2017].

Woodside, 2017. Strategy. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 17 February 2017].


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