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Utility of the Future Strategies

Utilities increasingly face a variety of new technical challenges ranging from intermittent renewable energy, distributed generation and ambitious environmental targets. The conventionally stable utility landscape is also being transformed by new market entrants to the energy ecosystem. This imminent wave of disruptive technical change and competitive environment change coincides with a difficult environment for the utilities; Regulatory bodies are increasingly pushing for level playing fields, environmental responsibility and increased transparency.

Although advances in ICT provide the computing power, flexibility and controllability required to manage the vastly increased quantity and frequency of data, no single product or solution turns a legacy grid into a Smart Grid or a ‘Utility of the Future’.

In the past, systems and solutions at power utilities have typically been commissioned with well-defined expectations and were installed in order to address particular problems. In the smart grid space with its high complexity and massive interdependencies, focusing on a single product for a single problem often does not fully exploit the emergent opportunities of leveraging that technology for increasing business value. Business cases focused on one single problem or objective in isolation often become negative and are not able to justify the required investments.

“Pace Global Energy Business Advisory” –has a vast experience in designing transformation strategies and the respective implementation plans that help utilities manage the demands of intermittent renewable energy sources, improve their operational excellence and transform their business models. Smart Grid Compass®, our core utility consulting framework, analyzes the utilities’ current situation, develops a strategic vision for the future, and uses technology deployments as key business enablers to advance towards the identified vision.

In that context, our key offerings include:

  • Gap Analysis & Vision Definition
  • Digitalization Strategy Design
  • Roadmap for Technology & Process Changes
  • Scenario Development & Master Plan
  • Utility Transformation Program Design
  • Implementation Support for Utility Transformation Programs

 

Model

The Smart Grid Compass® methodology is comprised of six functional domains of a utility’s core business, namely:

  1. Network Operations
  2. Customer Service
  3. Asset and Workforce Management
  4. Energy Management
  5. Organization
  6. Product Portfolio Management

 

model
Figure: Smart Grid Compass® Domains

The four central quadrants are tied together by an axis which represents the smart organization needed to implement the changes in the company structure to enable synergies of a smart grid roadmap and foster the change management within the utility. The boundary between the organization itself and the external marketplace is indicated by the outer rim that represents product and portfolio management. Activities in this domain help the organization manage, design, and position new as well as existing products and services in a way that can help it transform the business to its advantage, thereby creating new markets served by innovative and uncontested offerings.

All business areas typically execute business processes in order to achieve certain objectives such as customer satisfaction, compliance to regulation etc. Those objectives are achieved by an orchestrated use of different technologies in the field and require integration in order to profit from synergies between processes and technologies.

The Smart Grid Compass takes care of these aspects with three consistently connected dimensions:

  • Objectives
    Business Objectives are the major goals of any given business area and are achieved by the individual contribution of the business processes to these objectives. The Framework comprises four major objectives in each quadrant.
  • Business Capabilities
    Business Objectives can only be achieved by improving the corresponding Business Process Capabilities by enabling technological levers. The framework comprises up to eight major processes in each quadrant.
  • Technologies
    Technologies generally enable more sophisticated Business Process Capabilities and therefore add business value by contributing to Business Objectives.

Smart Grid Compass
Figure: Value Improvement Program
These dimensions are connected by an Initiatives Catalogue that contains Project Blueprints originating from Siemens’ experiences with projects and concepts in the Smart Grid environment. It is used to provide a connected view regarding process improvements made through leverage of technology achieving impact on objectives to build your Smart Grid Program on the experience of Siemens.

Method

The Smart Grid Compass® strategic planning approach focuses on improving effectiveness and efficiency of the utility by introducing smart grid processes and technologies. It maps objectives to process and technological enhancements. The introduction of new processes and technologies is done via initiatives that impact the business objectives and drive the value of a given smart grid implementation.

Smart Grid Compass® strategic planning approach follows a structured method in four modular phases: Orientation, Destination, Routing and Navigation to support a utility’s business transformation:

Smart Grid Compass® strategic planning approach

Figure: Siemens Smart Grid Compass® Methodology Overview

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