BP Oil spill and cement quality – is it only a Halliburton contractor problem?

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Halliburton is being blamed that out of the four cement quality tests only one passed and one news report suggests that BP did not know. If you read the report in detail you find that two of the February tests failed and one of the two April tests succeeded. In other words the April tests were after some modifactions in the cement formulation based on the February tests.

Here is the problem: as soon as a contractor or supplier is involved who depends on business from the industry it supplies to, there is a power differential. The supplier (Halliburton) is dependant on the oil industry (BP) and i t's easy to establish that the supplier should have checked- after all the contracts are pretty water-tight.

Let's say that BP was doing the cement in-house and not through Halliburton – could this have happened? Sure but then it would be a BP problem entirely.

With organizations depending so much on B2B to stay competitive and focus on their core competence, it's time to figure out how to make B2B relationships work. For example, if Halliburton  did tell BP of the cement problems- would they have got a "we own this problem too" response from BP ? Not likely because its the suppliers problem to figure out a solution….. Let's watch as more details emerge. In the meanwhile the Halliburton stock has plunged 15% as a sort of supplier's  jeopardy.

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