Energy and Utilities

Radical shift in utility companies’ network inventory management

For utilities companies, reliability and digitized high-quality services are crucial to enhance customer experience in modern economy and everyday life. Evolving constantly and changing the industry landscape of utilities (energy, oil and gas & water) now feel the heat to prioritize customer centricity and enable an integrated ecosystem.

Major challenges faced by utilities companies include operating cost optimization and maintaining delivery stability, with the need for geospatial solutions designed for energy, water gas and oil transmission and distribution. This allows management of the infrastructure and helps promptly react to different events and perform complex technical analyses. Some of the key challenges faced by utilities companies include:

  • Lack of information to make decisions about extending or upgrading their networks.
  • Need for improvements in network operations/maintenance
  • Need for a more effective way to plan investments
  • Problems for updating and accessing data about network resources
  • Lack of quick access information about the network equipment and connectivity
  • Need for easy access to technical documentation

It’s difficult to perform business processes for network planning, fieldwork management and outage management that are integrated with ERP, SCADA, and other systems.

Quick and simple network inventory with Network and Asset management

Wishlist of functionalities

  • Take control of their communications networks, and be ready for transformation
  • Manage updates of current, legacy, and future network infrastructure planning and management
  • Ensure correct dimensioning and capacity to meet all requirements
  • Correlate physical with logical, virtual, and service resources
  • Integrate impact assessment for accurate change management
  • Deliver customer assurance and leverage new commercial opportunities
  • Need to design geospatial solutions (GIS-based)

Expected NIMS System

The future of network inventory management systems should include functionalities like:

  • Use of artificial intelligence/machine learning algorithms for functions like predictive analysis of capacity management, unplanned outages, capacity utilization, inventory, and spares management etc. With deeper deployment of AI/ML can be instrumental in discovery and prediction of changes in network to automate asset data reconciliation and updating.
  • Usage of drones in assisting service maintenance efforts by identifying visible corrosion in physical infrastructure, missing nuts & bolts, rise of either man made or natural obstructions to service pathways. Drones can also be very effectively used to generate 3D photometric models of physical infrastructure of utilities company (energy, oil and gas, and water)
  • Usage of digital twins in operations. 3D photometric models of physical telecom infrastructure using AI/ML algorithms can auto generate structural and geometric digital twins of physical infrastructure. These Digital twins can then be effectively used in planning, Built & Operate and Maintenance rendering site visits redundant over time.
  • Usage of AR/VR tools, robotics, and digital twin platforms to enable remote equipment maintenance thus making physical site visits redundant. Troubleshooting and fault resolution could be carried out by operational staff thus increasing services availability, enhancing customer experience, and further lowering operational costs.
  • Increased automation functionality in next generation inventory management systems designed for M2M communications will eventually facilitate dynamic and automatic services configurations leading to deployment of programmable, self-healing and optimizing resources utilization.
  • Efficient process to evaluate distribution network using different criteria. Such as SAIDI and SAIFI depended on the network status, its observability, and time needed for reacting to the upcoming events.

Infosys BPM’s Key differentiators

  • Collaborated telecom & utilities industry expertise for network inventory management services
  • Customized solution design across utilities ecosystem, meeting customers’ business objectives
  • Recognized processes with digital solutions in utilities network services
  • Consistent, reliable, accurate and up-to-date inventory and asset info
  • A unique, automated reconciliation process tracks network and equipment changes, ensuring accuracy
  • Ability to correlate with GIS data for location visibility
  • Understanding on the location of all assets, with full geo-positioning, based on Google or Open Street Maps
  • A complete picture network and how physical, logical, virtual, and service assets are connected
  • APIs enable inventory and asset data to be shared with other business processes, boosting automation
  • Integrate with existing systems or use dedicated IMS functionality for efficient task and process flows
  • Planned network related work and impact analysis, with automated impact analysis and efficient customer communication

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