2010 Enterprise 2.0 Blazer: Mighty River Power

2010 Enterprise 2.0 Blazer: Open Enterprise Award

The Open Enterprise Award was given to the customer with the best use of Enterprise 2.0 technology to create self-service employee, customer and partner portals. This year's recipient was Mighty River Power.

Mighty.jpgCompany Background

 

Mighty River Power is an integrated energy generation, trading, retailing and metering business. With a strong emphasis on renewable sources of generation, they own and/or operate a diverse and expanding portfolio of generation assets throughout the North Island.

Business Challenges

The project's primary challenges were:

  • System matter experts were spread across a number of offices across New Zealand
  • Users were entrenched in multiple historic systems
  • A number of disparate processes were still paper-based and each office had a different flavor of the same process, some of which spanned several decades

Prior to implementation there were two attempts (using Lotus Notes and Maximo Asset Management) to implement a solution which could manage the engineering change process. Unfortunately, both solutions were unable to provide a total solution, which led to the development of standalone systems to fill the gaps and the development of paper-based processes. The lack of integration of these stand alone solutions over time created a number of instances of duplicated data.

In addition to issues with disparate systems and paper-based processes, there was a disconnect between the design process and the actual and physical implementation of engineering change. Monitoring and reporting of change requests was inaccurate or not auditable due to the lack of integration between processes and solutions. This impacted on management control of finances, the physical change process, and the general audit ability of the total change life cycle that was a legislative requirement for the business.

Why Oracle?

The solution Mighty River Power has implemented has provided a seamless integration of products into a single solution and a number of benefits to the business. This single solution is centered on BPM, which has provided a fully automated workflow with task escalation and email alerts as well as a consistent and auditable engineering change control process. This has resulted in improved efficiency primarily through reduced cycle time of engineering change, costs of rework, and improved and transparent decision-making.

The solution also provides a single knowledge repository (UCM) for all documentation which is captured within the change process. The system provides a scalable platform and the necessary content resources for future changes to build on, rather than having to start from the beginning every time. Scalability and durability of the solution is particularly important for the following reasons:

  • The institutional knowledge built over decades of service is very difficult, if not impossible, to recapture or reconstitute. The system thus helps mitigate this loss to ensure continued enforcement of policies and procedures.
  • The younger workforce typically works in one company for four to five years before moving on to new challenges. This also represents a loss of institutional knowledge primarily around newer initiatives and technology.

Additionally, the use of recognized and easy to use more modern technologies such as the Internet and web browsers have reduce the learning curve and gained user acceptance from the largely non-IT user base. The user friendly solution has quickly gained extraordinary popularity and reputation for ease of use across all levels through word of mouth. Some end-users have even taken the initiative of popularizing the system amongst their co-workers. A side benefit of this has also been found in the reduced costs of end-user training for different systems.

Collaboration functionality provided through the integration of BPM and AutoVue has reduced the design lifecycle time by providing tools to allow multiple users to collaborate and mark-up in real time on documents, even though they may be physically within different offices miles apart. A large benefit of this has also been found in the reduced costs of travelling when users based in different offices need to work together. One stop access and interoperability to data in various systems including Active Directory is also important, as well as security.

Finally, compliance with Environmental Policy and the Mighty River Power "G-Force" internal initiative were important, particularly reducing the carbon footprint through less employee travel and the reduction of environmental waste through reduced paper usage.

These benefits and a number of others are supporting the business by providing the tools needed to improve business processes, reduce costs and the time needed to implement change.

Solution Overview

Mighty River Power's Generation Group identified the need to improve its engineering change management process across its 26 Stations/Plants and three offices by implementing a solution which would provide the following benefits to the business:

  • Increased control and audit ability of engineering changes lowering infrastructure and financial risk
  • Reduced costs of change management through greater efficiency of internal staff and third parties when processing new and retrieving historical engineering change management data and plant drawings
  • Saving time and reducing overhead costs associated with paper shuffling
  • Improved engineering change resource utilization and coordination through better workflow automation and engineering design collaboration leading to reduced cycle time for engineering changes
  • User friendly, feature rich, externally supported and integrated ECM application
  • Consolidation of existing systems and paper-based processes to reduce the carbon footprint and paper usage as part of Mighty River Power's internal G-Force initiative which introduced a number of activities aimed at reducing waste across all business units
  • Capturing of tacit employee knowledge when employees leave the organization

To realize these objectives, Mighty River Power implemented a solution combining three Oracle products into one single fully integrated solution:

  • Oracle Universal Content Management - content management and version control for all documents created/maintained during the business process
  • Oracle Business Process Management - workflow management tool used for process automation
  • AutoVue - Enterprise visualization tool used for design drawing review, markup and real-time document collaboration

Using an Agile development methodology, the solution was implemented over a three month period and saw the creation of a single BPM process consisting of 120 tasks with five sub-processes. The development of the solution was a collaborative effort between the business and the IT teams, which delivered a user-friendly solution and provides a single version of the truth for all engineering change control across Mighty River Power.   

The solution was launched for an initial user base of 85 users. The system quickly achieved popularity for ease of use through internal word of mouth and after two weeks of go-live, nearly 200 users were using the system, many of which were not formally trained.

Within three months of going live with the new system, Mighty River Power has already seen the cost of change decrease as a result of reduced cycle time and improved communication. Knowledge is also being retained and is more accessible and manageable. Other benefits Mighty River Power has realized include: more auditable and transparent processes, software that supports the process and removes the red tape, reduction in administration support, improved management of resources and reduction of duplicate data.

Mighty-Award.jpg
Accepting the award on behalf of Mighty River Power was Jason Hale, Application Specialist. Congratulations!

 

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