Energy & Utility Sector Plugs Into New-Age Digital Solutions
DataQuest|October 2021
As India gears up to meet the climate challenge, the energy sector is undergoing a radical transformation. Many new technologies will be crucial in this change
Piyali Guha

With the emergence of the digital era and the increasing uptake of disruptive technologies V V data analytics, cloud, internet of things (IoT), like artificial intelligence (AI), blockchain, machine learning (ML) and robotic process automation (RPA), organisations across sectors are undergoing major business transformations globally. The energy and utility sector too is rapidly realising the disruptive roles these new-age technologies can play in enabling business growth and process efficiency, and how they have become the key accelerator of this transformation story.

For the energy and utility sector, service continuity and operational efficiency are paramount. Fuelled by digitisation and automation, industries across the globe are witnessing a massive shift in consumer behaviour and in the way businesses are functioning to cater to the changing market dynamics and demands. With enterprise digital competency becoming the core of an organisation, the emergence of new operational and business models that are leading to transformational delivery capabilities and improved performance is becoming the new norm. Recognising the need of the hour, the energy industry in India is also rapidly adopting automation and digital technologies and is going through massive transformation and redesign.

DIGITISATION FOR THE CHANGING BUSINESS NEEDS

While a combination of socio-economic factors and technology innovation is driving energy and utility organisations to transform into digital enterprises, it is important to evaluate the emerging technology trends and implement an effective digital transformation roadmap that is reliable, scalable, secure, and can enable the utilities to deliver enhanced customer experience and improve performance. These solutions are also expected to achieve desired business objectives, gain competitive advantage as well as meet regulatory compliances. This is not an easy task!

As the digital journey of the energy and utility sector advances, companies need to devise and execute an effective and innovative digital business platform that will help to deliver operational excellence while ensuring a smooth transition from legacy technologies. Since many utilities still use legacy applications with proprietary standards, it becomes a challenge to enforce integration of different solution components. This has to be addressed by upgrading certain solutions to conform to open standards,” explains Bragadesh Damodaran, Director, Energy and Utility Industry Hub, Capgemini.

Today technology is driving the way energy is sourced, delivered and consumed. In addition, factors like increased adoption of renewable energy, battery storage, distributed grid edge generation (prosumers), rise of electric vehicles, decarbonisation and decentralisation are disrupting the energy and utility landscape like never before. The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has further stressed the need for digitisation and business continuity through strengthening IT infrastructure and deploying innovative solutions that will result in optimised business processes, differentiated delivery models and create new business capabilities,” Damodaran adds.

Keeping pace with this global trend, India too is rapidly adapting itself to be a frontrunner in this digital transformation story. Adoption of new-age technologies like Al, advanced analytics, cloud and lloT is witnessing great traction and is likely to gain momentum as companies are transmuting their business processes. Chatbots and voice assistance, RPA and blockchain too are evolving as strong technology growth drivers in the near future.

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