Oct 2015
Electricity Transmission
Trial of Open Innovation Model in the Utilities Sector
NIA_SPT_1505
Live
Oct 2015
Oct 2019
SP Energy Networks and SP Transmission
James Yu (Future Networks Manager)
Click here to send a question to the contact.
Network Innovation Allowance
None
Electricity Transmission Networks
£600,000.00

The scope of this NIA project is to test, review and exploit an OI model.

A staged approached is to be initialised in testing and reviewing the OI concept to make sure that it is fit for purpose and can suit the nature of the utilities sector such that innovation can be carried out in a reliable, coordinated, efficient and cost effective manner.

Stage 1 – Planning and Approving (2-4 months)

Develop an appropriate business model through appropriate internal and external stakeholder engagement.

Internal – Consider the asset supply chain for deeper company innovation engagement. This will include engaging with various departments such as System Planning, Transmission operations, System Analysis and Regulations. 

External - Look outside the business and sector for a wider innovation approach and locate potential businesses/universities…etc. that show capabilities in providing promising innovation solutions.   

Stage 2 – Delivery (18 months)

This will involve delivering the programme, to meet internal and external stakeholder requirements.  We will measure the success of the program based on the number of challenges faced. 

External resources such as contractors and/or equipment will be required in the development of the programme.  The individuals will be required to assure the plan is followed with weekly updates informing the external/internal teams of the progress.  SPEN will initially targeted two to three business challenges per year that will benefit from the Open Innovation programme and look to increase the use of SME’s in the process.

One of the initial projects will address the business challenge of transmission tower foundation condition monitoring where every year a large sum of money is invested inspecting the foundations of our circuit towers.  The costs include the hiring contractors to assess these foundations manually. Consequently, we are looking for a non-intrusive and more efficient method.   

Stage 3 – Review and further improvement(12 months)

This will involve looking over the programme.  The programme will have to be thoroughly checked and analysed to assure key considerations such as IPR (Intellectual Property) arrangements and UK innovation governance are consistent so that Electricity licensees can benefit from this model.  Furthermore, the programme will have to be built in a sustainable manner to deliver long term benefits which are not just applicable to ScottishPower but relevant to other stakeholders.

Stage 4 – Follow up and sustainable operation (12 months)

This is the final stage and will involve maintaining the programme at a high level.  Measures will be put in place to ensure that the programme is continually improved and remains relevant.  Along with this, a regular review within the company and with external stakeholders will be carried out to fine tune the mechanism as well as the scope.  We will start with a test case within the six months of launching the programme and get operational experience from this model.

Objective

Development of Business Plan

Details

Create a business plan that will be the main guidance into the necessary requirements in working with SME’S.  This essentially will be to drive the planning and approval stages forward, arranging meetings/updates

KPI

Check every month to keep on track

Objective

Development of OI Business Plan

Details

Develop a business plan that will identify internal/external needs and develop different strategies if none currently exist.  Its main purpose is to guiding the innovation project towards completion.

KPI

Check every month to keep on track

Objective

Number of Challenges

Details

Would aim to consistently provide 2-3 business challenges per year that can be resolved with the help of an SME(s). We would assess the challenges arising and completed 

KPI

2-3 per annum

Objective

Number of SMEs engaged

Details

Engage with a sufficient number of SME’s per project, allowing various solutions and options to be assessed.

KPI

Minimum 5 per project

  • Developing an OI model and project programme that is fit for purpose and suits the nature of the utilities sector
  • Ensure that collaborative innovation is undertaken in a reliable, coordinated, efficient and cost effective manner
  • Identification of two or three business challenges a year, that will benefit from the Open Innovation programme, and innovative products, processes or services well suited to addressing these challenges