Enterprise Integration & Smart Grid Strategy


Many of today’s enabling technologies – such as Smart Grid, Smart Metering, Demand Response, Home Automation and Home Area Network, Distributed Renewable Resources, Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles, etc. – are capable of transforming the utility paradigms and business processes, from the way it engineers the energy delivery system to the way it serves its customers.

Establishing and implementing an enterprise integration plan that aligns business and technology is fundamental to managing the transformational changes, mitigating business risks, and maximizing benefits from the technologies.

We can help you develop, justify, and implement the enterprise integration plan that focuses on the enabling technologies as well as utility enterprise systems, such as geospatial information system, enterprise resource planning, and field force automation. We tailor the plan to your specific needs. A typical engagement may include some or all of the services below. 

VISION AND STRATEGY – Establish direction, guiding principles, drivers, goals and considerations

BUSINESS ASSESSMENT – Develop the to-be business model and identify and prioritize gaps 

Business areas to be assessed may include business management, customer service, energy delivery system planning and asset management, energy delivery engineering and operations, energy management, IT and other infrastructure support, etc.

  • Gaps may include organization, process, technology use and data

TECHNOLOGY ASSESSMENT – Assess potential technologies, including AMI, demand response, and smart grid; and identify and prioritize gaps with existing and planned systems:

  • State of the industry and state of the technology
  • Technology applications and benefits
  • Infrastructure and security
  • System and asset operation and maintenance
  • Organization and business process impacts
  • Industry case studies and lessons learned

ENTERPRISE INTEGRATION PLAN – Optimize to-be business processes, integrate automation and information technologies and applications, and align business and technology

  • To-be business processes, including linkage to technology applications
  • Information system integration (enterprise systems, databases, data warehouses, and applications)
  • Automation and infrastructure technology integration (WAN/LAN/HAN, intelligent electronic device interoperability, quality of service prioritization and management, etc.)
  • Alternative architecture designs

BUSINESS CASE– Develop and document repeatable and defensible business justifications

  • Total cost of ownership – Project costs (capital and O&M), change management costs, ongoing operations and maintenance (capital and O&M), system support costs
  • Benefits – Strategic, societal and ratepayer benefits; hard and soft operation benefits
  • Cost/benefit analysis

IMPLEMENTATION PLAN – Formulate an integrated plan of manageable projects/subprojects, each with clearly defined scope, budgets, success criteria and benefit expectations

  • Prioritized projects and program timeline
  • Scope – functional, technical, integration, operational and maintenance requirements
  • Resource plan, including external as well as internal business and IT resources, from executive sponsorship to project team, with clearly defined roles and responsibilities
  • Cost and benefit realization timelines and target performance metrics
  • High priority improvement areas (i.e., the "low hanging fruit")
  • Change management plan
  • Risks and risk management strategy

IMPLEMENTATION SUPPORT– Ensure successful execution of the strategy

  • Project Management office support
  • Functional and system specifications, project service requirements, vendor technical and commercial response worksheets
  • Solicitation and acquisition of products and services, including proposal evaluation plan and facilitation, contract strategy and negotiation support
  • Refinement of implementation plan and business case costs/benefits
  • System design and engineering
  • Independent expert review of project progress and cost/benefit checkpoints to provide early warnings and recommend mitigation measures
  • System testing and commissioning
  • Production, transition and rollout planning and support
  • Knowledge transfer
  • Change management
  • Risk mitigation and management

POST IMPLEMENTATION SUPPORT – Ensure and enhance benefit realization

  • Analyze project lessons learned
  • Assess and rationalize gaps between actual observable or measurable benefits against planned performance metrics
  • Review emerging technologies, new industry practices and standards, new regulations, new customer expectations
  • Recommend enhancements to organization, business process, technology, technology utilization
  • Develop plan to achieve the enhancements and associated business case