Take a More Strategic Business Outcome Focused Approach to PPM
In a fiercely competitive industry, energy and utility companies must choose the right investments to succeed. But that is becoming increasingly difficult with more focus on green technologies; the need to maintain the current, aging, infrastructure; and increasingly rigorous regulatory requirements. Combine that with a limited, and reducing, talent pool and the need to deliver innovative new products and services, and the challenges are huge.
Be More Than Just a Status Quo PMO
Investing for the Long Term
Project investments in the energy and utilities space tend to be multi-year commitments. They require massive amounts of capital and resources, with payback periods measured in years or even decades. It is therefore critical that decisions to commit to such investments are made with as much understanding as possible. Reliable cost projections, detailed risk assessments, detailed and realistic schedules, and so on are all required to ensure that leaders can make the best decisions.
Then, when circumstances change, as they inevitably will, leaders must be able to reassess the investment, model alternative adjustments, and commit to the best approach with confidence that they are making the best choice for the success of the work. That can only happen with a PPM solution that contains powerful planning and analytics tools, that tracks and manages complete, accurate and timely information on actual performance, and that supports powerful reporting, analysis and decision support tools. With that capability energy and utility companies can make the right decisions, without it, they are guessing.
No Room for Error
Every organization must make decisions to balance investments in new, innovative, forward-looking initiatives with the need to maintain current infrastructure. But nowhere are those decisions as important as for energy and utility companies. Legacy infrastructures represent significant financial commitments, and if any part fails, the consequences are going to be severe.
At the same time, companies must invest for the future, maximizing value and future proofing themselves in a world that is rapidly moving to new energy models and embracing sustainability and environmental considerations. Get the balance wrong and you either lose ground, or suffer catastrophic failure.
Leaders need powerful PPM capabilities like those provided by KeyedIn to understand how priorities convert to investments and how those investments are delivered to achieve value. They need to be able to understand and adjust the investment mix to align with current and future needs, and to ensure that there is a balance between risk and return. Energy and utility companies simply cannot get these decisions wrong, so they need world class solutions to support them.
As an industry, energy and utilities has seen a skills drain for many years. With fewer talented professionals entering the industry than are leaving, it is essential that organizations are able to optimize their resources at all times. However, that’s not anywhere near as easy as it sounds. The need to maintain flexibility for adjustments when needed, the high degree of specializations that exist in the industry, geographic requirements for some work, and the challenges of switching between projects, all reduce resource flexibility.
It is therefore essential that resource capability and capacity are planned far enough in advance to allow for changes to be made before work is negatively impacted. Achieving that requires a PPM solution that is integrated with HR, with Learning & Development, and with Procurement, ensuring that the right people are always available in the right numbers at the right time, in the right place, and with the right skills. That integration also makes it easier to understand flexibility for adjustments and supports more effective modeling and scenario analysis when adjustments are needed.
A Brave New World
The energy and utilities sector is being massively disrupted by emerging technology and green energy. Companies in the sector are already starting to embrace the Internet of things and blockchain to redefine business and revenue models, while AI is impacting everything from operations to customer service. But energy companies don’t want to have to become technology companies just to survive in this brave new world.
Instead, they need to focus their investments on the right innovations, partnering where necessary to leverage the capabilities while remaining committed to their core business. Achieving that requires close management of multiple complex variables – multi-year programs delivered by several organizations in numerous business areas. The right PPM solution provides clarity and insight into that work, driving better decisions and validating the expected performance improvements and value realization.