How MDM helps the Utility Industry
Utilities face many challenges with their business and operations. In a highly asset intensive industry with a geographically disparate asset base, implementing operational and maintenance standards and practices is necessary to continually improve the balance between asset reliability and costs. They require uninterrupted supply of adequate and cost-effective materials as well as maintenance equipment in order to ensure continuity of operations, reduced downtime and improved supply management.
Inventory management is another challenge with poor visibility into the inventory assets leading to low cross-facility material utilization and a decrease in the return on capital employed. Untimely equipment failures in utilities lead to unplanned plant downtime and lost revenues. With the companies depending on numerous suppliers for their operations and services, it is important for supply management to go beyond the company to the extended workforce. The constantly evolving environmental standards and regulations issued by governments have to be strictly adhered to, failing which there could be monetary penalties.
After decades of accumulating data from multiple applications for different consumer segments, geographical markets and functions, the bulk of the master data across in the utility is a mess.
• Multiple ERP and other master data source systems
• Multiple facilities and locations with localized data norms and languages
• Increasing data volumes and complexity due to the advent of smart grids and other new technology
• Multiple taxonomies and standards for data description and classification with sizeable chunk of duplicated, inaccurate and outdated utility data
• Large supplier and consumer base with minimal visibility hindering the utility from rationalizing the procurement process and revenue from the consumers
Master Data Management (MDM) is a system of business processes and technology components. The components provide information about business objects such as materials, suppliers, consumers and other key assets of a utility company. It delivers clean, consistent, accurate and updated utility master data across the utility to drive business processes and operations. It consolidates, cleans, and augments the master data, and synchronizes it with all applications, business processes, and analytical tools.
An effective Master Data Management initiative comprises two key parts – historical data cleansing and ongoing data maintenance. Historical data cleansing involves classification, de-duplication and business-value enrichment of the existing legacy master data across all the utility systems, information gathered from smart grids and other systems, customized applications and organizational units of a utility. Ongoing data maintenance on the other hand, involves maintaining quality of the master data on an ongoing basis and creating a framework for the creation, use, access and maintenance of data across the utility, leading to enhanced operational efficiencies and improved sourcing strategies.
Further Reading –
White Paper – 16 Epic Fails! in MRO Master Data Management
White Paper – MDM as an Answer to ROI of ERP Deployment
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