Case description Energy Utility Company

Case Description – Vision, Strategy and Roadmap Development  
Reference case
What’s the story?
An Energy Utility Company in the Netherlands decided to cut operational costs by operating mid-size power plants remotely from a nearby large power plant. This included first only the stand-by mid-size power plants but was extended to a actually running mid-size power plant.
What are relevant keywords?
Remote Control, Operation Technology (OT). 
Performance Level
On what level was this assignment?
Client Context
What is the client’s context and environment? 

The plant portfolio of an Energy Utility Company in the Netherlands consisted of large power plants and some mid-size power plants which operated if needed and were standing-by most of the year. To improve the efficiency of the staff needed to operate and maintain a such a stand-by mid-size power plant and to cut operational costs it was decided to start investigating whether the mid-size plants could be operated remotely from one of the nearby larger plants. 


Problem Statement
What is the problem that needs to be solved? What is the assignment? 

To cut operational costs it has been decided to reduce or even skip the staff of the stand-by mid-size power plants by operating and controlling these facilities remotely from a nearby larger power plant. 


Our Approach 

How did we tackle this? 

The initial project focused only on the technical implication of this initiative. Using the ESF/3 methodology we were able to: 

  • Determine the impact of this decision on the organization in general and the operational employees of the mid-size power plants; 
  • Introduce an IT security awareness to all the stakeholders which enabled them to take IT security serious and improve the IT security maturity of the organization; 
  • Taken into account the physical security at the mid-size plant since these plants were to become almost unmanned due to the remote control; 
  • Creating awareness of the possible legal implications of the decision to remote control the mid-size plants; 
  • Improve the IT support organization since remote control of a distant plant is fully reliable on IT and thus has impact on the IT organization. 
    What are the key results we delivered? 

    Our approach resulted in a broadened scope of this initiative to a wider perspective in which the technical part, which was the main part originally, seemed to be one of the easier tasks in the whole program. 

     In the end they were successful in introducing remote-operating of a the mid-size power plant(s) as a new service.  

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