Perspectives

The smart grid conundrum

Short Takes...on Analytics

A blog by Dave Steiger, Senior Manager, Deloitte Consulting LLP, Power & Utilities Sector Analytics Leader

Smart grid analytics is getting a lot of attention these days and it’s easy to understand why. With all the data streaming in from smart meters and other intelligent devices, utility companies are eager to put this information to work.

The potential benefits are clear. Some electric companies are using analytics to collect momentary interruptions and other minor events that could help identify and grid vulnerabilities, which could lead to major outages. Others are gaining a deeper understanding of transformer operating conditions, providing insights that can help prolong the life of these valuable assets. Gas and water companies can prioritize pipeline, or other asset replacement and use analytics to avoid major leaks. And that’s just for starters.

While many leaders understand how smart grid analytics can help improve operations, they may be overwhelmed by the dozens of software companies competing for their business. I advise my clients to answer these questions before making their vendor selection:

  • Maturity. How long have they been in business? Who are their customers? Do they have a proven track record?
  • Security and privacy. Do they have the capabilities needed to protect your data?
  • Policies and regulations. Will they meet your internal standards and governmental regulations?
  • Capitalization. Do they have long-term funding to grow and innovate?

Of course, this isn’t a complete list. What do you consider when selecting an analytics vendor?

Leveraging their smart grid data is just one of the ways power and utility leaders are using analytics to inform smarter decisions. To explore how analytics can help your company, check out Power Analytics, our new interactive infographic.

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