One of the key challenges facing utilities is the increasing cost to provide services and infrastructure. For instance Power utility assets are generally in decline however Power consumption is increasing placing added strain on aging infrastructure. As a result many utility companies are proposing price increases to address these issues. Eskomm, the largest utility in South Africa, is proposing a 35% increase each year for three years to pay for network improvements. Western Power, in Australia, is proposing a 26% increase to raise $1.1 billion by 2012 to maintain its network.
The lack of spare electrical generation capacity is also proving a challenge particularly in extreme weather conditions where there is additional strain on available power resources forcing commercial customers to slow operations to reduce consumption. Added to this, the Australian Government has now legislated that 20% of all power must come from renewable sources by 2020 and the cost of producing these renewable energy sources is higher than the costs of producing electricity from fossil fuels. All of these factors are contributing to increased costs as companies try to maintain existing assets whilst funding capital works programs to improve or upgrade services and infrastructure.
The management of water resources also presents a challenge for utility companies. In the last few years, efforts to promote reduced water consumption by water utilities have been successful with Australians reducing their water consumption by 20%-30% . However, even though Australians are reducing their consumption, water reserves continue to decline. Furthermore population growth in Australia is placing additional strain on available water reserves forcing a number of Australian state governments to build desalination facilities to boost water reserves.
Another utility facing significant challenges is the waste management industry. Each Australian household generates about 400 kilograms of waste per year, placing us amongst the top 10 generators of household waste in Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries . The challenge for these companies is to continue to find ways to improve resource recovery whilst minimising environmental impacts.
Information management can assist utility companies in addressing these challenges by helping them manage their assets and support them in making difficult business decisions in response to changing legislation and regulations, aging infrastructure and increasing environmental considerations. It can also assist companies in managing customer information, billing and help them optimise business processes and operations.
At Velrada we understand the challenges facing the utilities sector and have experience helping clients identify ways to improve efficiency and deliver business outcomes. Our approach is to work with the business to understand requirements and deliver business solutions that add value and enable staff to easily undertake their day-to-day work activities. We understand that technology can be an enabler however we also understand there must be standards, guidelines, processes and procedures which ensure data is accurate, relevant and accessible and managed in a secure environment. We have expertise in data management, business intelligence, document and records management, Portals, business analysis, project management, change management and business transformation.
Velrada can provide the following services to assist you in optimising your business activities:
- Manage programs and projects efficiently on your behalf
- Help you to transform your business models to work more effectively within your current technology stack
- Develop IM strategies and business solutions
- Assist you in preparing business cases
- Assist you to maintain compliance with legislative regulations and minimise business risk
- Work with you to ensure that the data and information you need to make informed decisions is current, accurate, relevant and accessible to staff across the business
- Optimise you IM and IT expenditure