Contributor: Christopher Behme
What a week! With Texas Set 4.0 (mandatory changes to the transactions and processes to be implemented this year in the Energy Reliability Council of Texas, ERCOT jurisdiction) delays, many IT shops and business groups are scrambling to adjust. When even one company in this inter-dependent framework faces challenges, everyone is affected.
When we talk about changing regulations, we’re often left discussing the uncertainty that new and pending legislation can generate (think Sarbanes-Oxley, Dodd-Frank). From past experience, we know that the introduction of new regulations places enormous strain on corporate resources and daily operations. Energy companies have to deal with a host of regulatory challenges, making it crucial to improve business process workflows, test strategies, and unlock the value of IT. Many retailers and utilities companies today are focused on expanding their market presence while balancing their cost to serve.
Organizations that can successfully utilize their technical capabilities and continually improve operating processes will establish themselves as leaders in the ever-changing energy landscape. The keys to managing critical change fall into three categories.
- Program Management – Managing change and having a governance structure in place is the key to properly prioritizing and implementing changes efficiently. This ensures that the most critical projects for the organization’s strategy have proper attention from the beginning.
- Data Management – Being prepared to manage multiple data streams required by different jurisdictions and the convergence of software technologies allows the organization to be prepared for changes and to handle transaction exceptions and trends before the show up.
- Business Process Focus – If consistent and ‘componentized’ processes underlie every department, then the common set of business processes creates an environment where the back office, customer care, market operations, pricing, contract management and wholesale teams can communicate and operate efficiently across the organization.
The challenges from this Texas Set implementation highlight that focusing on these three areas and applying the resources required to extend these capabilities is critical to being able to successfully adapt to changes as an industry leader. Efficiency in supporting systems and operating processes ensures that customers can be served at an effective cost.
While you’re here…
- Contact us to discuss these three steps to managing change in response to regulations.
- Explore our website to learn more about the consulting services offered by SunGard Global Services.