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Latest Blog Posts in SAP for Utilities

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    Utilities don't change, right?

     

    You push a button and the lights come on, or the gas is delivered, or the water flushes.

     

    What's there to change?

     

    WRONG.....!!!!!! - Everything is changing.

     

    Much the same as if in the mid 1990's I would have told you that you will be buying your milk at the local gas station, and that the gas station will be taking on the grocery store as competition, or that the grocery stores would compete with the banking industry by offering the opportunity to withdraw cash with no foreign ATM service fee, or that your mobile device would replace your Walkman (remember those?), your iPod, your camera, your scheduler, your calculator, your rolodex, and so much more.

     

    It is stated that there are currently more mobile devices in the world than people with an estimated 8.6 billion devices versus 7.3 billion people. With and estimated 5.8 billion mobile users worldwide, that means almost 80% of the planet's population are mobile, and they have an average of 1.5 devices each. Technology that is digitally connecting the population, bringing new competition, improved efficiencies and changing the way we do everything.

     

    Now that's digital transformation.

     

    By 2050, the global population is projected to be ten billion people. Some experts say the demand for electricity, natural gas and water will double or triple as billions of people join the digital economy, and the use of energy and water will grow while vehicles and mass transit go electric. One thing is clear - the digital economy needs clean, dependable and affordable electricity.

     

    This should be a great outlook for power generators, distributors and retailers, but de-carbonization, deregulation and decentralization are disrupting the century-old utilities hierarchy. We see a "Digital Energy Network" emerging that reflects new structures of power generation, transmission, distribution and retail. It will foster new business models and processes and transform work in a competitive and collaborative digital economy.

     

    The consequences are dramatic. Proven utilities business models based on trillions of dollars worth of plants and grids collapse. New market entrants, such as Google and Tesla, disrupt the value chain. Rapid technical and social innovation puts new capital investments at risk. Consumers, communities and companies go "off the grid" with new wind, solar and storage technology.

     

    The industry is currently balancing the efficient operations of its existing infrastructure with the need to adapt to the volatile market environment. Leading utilities are re-evaluating their physical assets and customer relationships to:

     

    • Reimagine business models to find new revenue and profit sources by offering innovative supply, load balancing and smart home/business energy services
    • Reimagine business processes and use digital technology to optimize business outcomes by converging information and operational technologies
    • Reimagine the role and structure of the workforce to support future business by incorporating wearable technology, 3D printers and geospatial technologies

     

    "Reimagining" the utilities business will shape the Digital Energy Network that overlaps and complements the power supply system. All participants - utilities, consumers and new non-utility players - will use digital innovation to anticipate real-time demand and supply, operate self-healing grids, and innovate the customer experience.

     

    On April 11-13, at The Hague, The Netherlands, we will have the International SAP Conference for Utilities where utilities from around the world will discuss how they are reimagining their businesses and digitally transforming their organizations, and how they are addressing the Digital Energy Network.

     

    Stay tuned for more details, and remember to sign up for the conference. To get regular updates, follow us on Twitter @SAPIndustries #SAPUtilties

     

    We look forward to seeing you at The Hague

     

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    The theme of this year's International Utilities Conference is 'Creating Value in the Digital Energy Network' >>LINK

     

    Utilities globally understand the pressing need to involve their customers as a key partner in the Digital Energy Network. They also understand the enormous opportunity a deep and frequent engagement with their customers presents. However, utilities are also asking how they can compete against digitally-mature market entrants from the telecommunications, automotive, or retail industry. And they are asking how they can compete for the talent of a younger workforce that has grown up in the digital era of consumerism.

     

    I like how one colleague summarized the state of the utilities industry: “The age of disruptive monetization”. I like this statement since it sums up nicely what utilities are facing. Disruption by competition and technology while requiring to increase revenue. However, it also leads right away to a set of concrete To-Dos so utilities can not only mimic the new market entrants but use their strengths to “disrupt the disruptors”.


    Just three aspects of this new age:

    1. Look around you and look in the mirror.
      We are all customers. We are constantly connected. We are researching, consuming, transacting constantly. And we do not make a difference depending on the type of product and service we desire. Heck, we surf the web on the mobile phone while watching our favorite show on TV!

    2. Utilities are turning from a commodity provider to a provider of turnkey services.
      This is absolutely the right direction for utilities since they are fulfilling the unmet need of the new energy consumer that almost no other provider can fulfill. From my own experience, it is hard to “get solar”, make the home smarter, more energy efficient, cheaper to run. Heck, most people do not even understand the rate they are paying for electricity, gas or water! A huge opportunity for utilities to shine and help people “get stuff”.

    3. It is a fast-changing marketplace out there.
      People are adding customer-owned devices and sensors like home security products or distributed generation like solar to the digital energy network. Utilities love having all this data produced by these devices. However, this data also creates high expectations from customers for highly personalized service since now the utility should have deep profile of the individual customer, right?
      Do you live up to this challenge or is data “your silent killer”?
      Do you know when to engage with the customer? What are your customers’ “Moments that matter”?
      Can you facilitate between the customer and the 3rd party provider for home security products you are using?
      What types of subscription services can you offer so you can reduce churn?

     

    So many questions. But also so many answers!


    I am excited about our “Digital Customer Innovation” track.  First of all, I want to thank our speakers that will present how they extract value from innovating in customer profiling and personalization, in the call center, in self-service and why a well-functioning commerce site is becoming so important so fast. In the end, a customer experience is only well designed when it delivers on the outcome the customer expected. Which customer wants to order again when the experience was sub-par previously?

     

    Additionally, we at SAP want to offer you our experience that we gained from helping hundreds of retail, consumer goods, telecommunication and media companies digitally transform their business. These industries rank high when it comes to customer experience and the rate of innovation.

     

    It is time to bring these best practices and proven tools like the SAP Hybris solution set to the Utilities industry.

    See you in April in The Hague!


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    BWN tag.jpg

    Joint Annual Luncheon Meeting at the next International SAP conference for Utilities and Oil & Gas in The Hague, The Netherlands, April 11-14.

    Find out more about this event Utilities event website>>LINK  and Oil & Gas event website >>LINK


    REGISTER NOW >>LINK


    Dear Utilities Community,

     

    You are cordially invited to the joint annual meeting of the Utilities and Oil & Gas Industry Business Women’s Network.

     

    We are proud to sponsor a lunch at the 2016 Utilities and Oil & Gas Conferences in The Hague, The Netherlands and hope that you will be able to join us.

    The objective of this group will be to provide an open and engaging networking forum that provides you with the opportunity to discuss industry topics with peers from around the globe. We hope, through this forum, we will be able to share experience and provide support for the advancement and development of women within the Utilities and Oil & Gas industries.

     

    Don’t miss this great networking opportunity – join us for lunch and get to know each other better!

     

    • Date: Wednesday April 13, 2016
    • Time: 12:15 – 13:30
    • Location: Amazon Foyer, The World Forum
    • Agenda:
      • Welcome and Opening of the Luncheon
      • Group Networking
      • Talk from Janette Beinart, VP CIO Upstream, Shell International Exploration and Production B.V

    Please note that although this invitation is being targeted at women delegates, the meeting is open to anyone who wishes to attend.  Feel free to forward the meeting invitation. As there is limited capacity in the room, please confirm or decline your participation so that we can make the appropriate arrangements. Confirmation will be made on a first come first serve basis.

     

    If you have any questions regarding the luncheon, please contact Jessica Southwell on +44 (0)121 200 3810 or j.southwell@tacook.com.

     

    Kind regards,

     

    Melanie Fiolka


    Follow me on LinkedIn :me@LinkedIn

    Follow me on Twitter : @MelanieFiolka



    Stay tuned for more details, and remember to sign upfor the conference! To get regular updates,follow us on Twitter SAP Industries #SAPUtilities.


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    The SAP MicroForum agenda has been revealed yesterday. Taking place during the International SAP Conference for Utilities, this will be a place to meet, to discuss and to get your questions answered in an individual conversation.

     

    This year’s SAP exhibition exists of three main parts:

     

    • A welcome and meet the expert zone, with informal and relaxed meeting space

     

    • 2 dedicated utilities industry SAP microforum theaters with more than 30 sessions over two days, where you will learn about the latest SAP solutions and innovations. After each of these sessions the experts will be available and your questions can be answered.

     

    • Innovation corner where you can discover some of the latest cutting edge technology avaialble from SAP

     

    For more detailed information please visit the event web site >


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    Today a Modern Workforce relies on effective communication as much if not more so than having the correct parts and tools.  However when we think of communications we often push that topic over to the technical team and expect that better radios or higher bandwidth is what is needed to improve communications ?  We couldn't be further from the truth !

     

    When we consider the modern workforce more broadly we quickly see that communications comes in many forms.  There are the obvious spoken modes arriving in person, via radio or phone.  Planner act as communicators and take engineering data on drawings and sketches then translate those medias into job instructions.  Additionally there are process touch points that move the task from its inception through completion.

     

    Let's break down each of these a bit more and truly see how important communications are to the modern worker.

     

    Spoken communications start at the point the need is identified, was the problem clearly and correctly stated ?  Did the author capture the assets involved or perhaps the address to orient and identify the troubled parts.  Was there a recommended party to assign the work to or perhaps a clearly captured extent of condition that would help set the priority for the job ?  Beyond the start point, what sort of communicationsoccurred prior to the starting of the work, was there a pre-job safety briefing or an execution plan discussed  and documented ?


    When it comes to the translation of media into written instructions we find that pictures that are made available for the field worker can be highly effective means of communication.  Recall that childhood game where one person told a short phrase to a second and so on down the line to the last person who repeated out loud the phrase? How well did that work out ? !  So it follows with converting media into a written communication.  The detail of complex drawings or engineering materials can often be internalized by the back office engineer though their assimilation of the information and then not passed along via the written communications in the job package.  Better yet to include the drawing or video into the work package for first hand use in the field.


    Process cues and status points are forms of communications that often are broken in a best of breed deployments.  When exclaiming a process diagram it is important to understand not only the job steps but also the status points that occur during normal and abnormal executions.  Take a case where the worker is sent to disconnect a customer service for non payment.  If the design is such that the workers mobile device receives the order to disconnect and then never is updated a very angry customer can find their service disconnected even though they paid that very morning whilst the worker was in route. Of course the worker could call in prior to performing the work, but doesn't that seem to be a bit stone age ? The continuous end to end process integration and status updates are a key form of communication in this scenario.


    Before we leave the process and status scenarios, consider the use of status information that the modern workforce can provide to the balance of the enterprise.  When the job is picked up, the status changes and so on as the worker is in route, on site, on hold, complete.  Each of these status points when effectively communicated to the back office enterprise becomes a beacon of information that has tremendous value to be shared.  The customer can now receive a communication letting them know that the worker is in route to their home, or that the job is completed and they can restart their appliances.


    In the end communications comes in many forms and is key to the most effective workforce.  We often minimize the data forms and instead try to compensate with spoken or written forms.  To achieve the best results we should look to all forms and maximize each using modern technologies as each plays a different role in our success.


    Stop by at the SAP International Utility Conference April 11-13 th at the Hague to hear more about the Modern Workforce.


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    Earlier this year SAP and Accenture announced how we would be working together and building innovations for customers using SAP HANA.  This is not news from the history books as many a successful collaboration has taken place over the years, but instead it signals a exciting time for progressing Big Data and IoT topics.

     

    Willing customers are being sought out to contribute to the dialog and lend a hand in the output of this effort.  It is our intention to build on top of standard product offerings in ways that will allow customers of varying maturity levels to utilize the SAP HANA Platform and bring their Operational Data and Information Technologies together in meaningful ways that could reduce cost to operate assets and improve reliability.

     

    During my microforum talk - I will explain how we have done this with our customers using various HANA tools and how these engagements coupled with Accenture expertise is helping drive the future.

     

    Stop by and see us at the upcoming SAP International Utility Conference at the Hague April 11-13th for more information and conversation about the future of utility analytics powered by the SAP HANA Platform.

     

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    Hi All,

     

    Most of you working on SAP IS-U project as Billing consultant knows the fact that managing and transporting Billing Master Data is a bit tricky.

     

    There are standard tools provided by SAP to move these efficiently across Development -> Quality -> Production, few of them are below:

     

    EA_TRANSPORT - Complete Transport

    EA_DOWNLOAD - Download Selective Master Data

    EA_UPLOAD - Upload Selective Master Data

     

    where from the source system you execute Complete Transport which will ask for a new Request and this will be used to move to target system.

     

    Again under EA_TRANSPORT (or EQ82) there is an option to include the Price and Discount changes as well. There are Price-only transports like EPRICE_UPLOAD, REA_PRICE_DOWNLOAD, REA_PRICE_UPLOAD available which can also be referred.

     

     

    What if in a case where the super user directly need to create Price in Production from EA89? The default client settings under SCC4 in Production (as a best practice) is not to allow any change, which means you can not save the price changes without a transport request.

     

     

    To override this, SAP has provided user exit Enhancement EBIS0010 and delivers the exit EXIT_SAPLEA89B_003, here just set the export parameter  Y_NO_AUTO_TRANS = 'X' in your custom project and all done, no Transport Request will be prompted in Production.

     

    Hope this helps!

     

     

    Cheers,

     

    Srini


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    The Internet of Things is one of these topics that are discussed everywhere these days. But what does it actually mean for utility companies? And is it really something new? Utilities analyze data from “the edge” – from grid sensors and smart meters – already for many years. In fact, the smart grid could be called the first Internet of Things ever. What has however changed – and the change is still going on – is the number of devices, that deliver more and more granular data. This data offers new opportunities and enable insights about asset health, grid load as well as consumer behavior, just to mention some of the examples that have challenged many utilities by now.

    But the data alone is not enough; utilities need to clean the data, process it and bring it into meaningful context with data from ERP systems, social media or the electricity exchange. SAP supports this journey with advanced technology like the HANA Cloud Platform, predictive analytic tools and cloud solutions. And to really paint the whole picture from the sensors at the edge to neural network algorithms at the very core, SAP is working closely with many partners who contribute their IoT expertise.

     

    During the Internet of Things track at the 2016 International SAP Conference for Utilities in The Hague we therefore discuss

    • The Relevance of the Internet of Things for Utilities
    • SAP’s IoT strategy for Utilities
    • Current as well as planned IoT solutions
    • SAP’s collaboration with partners like Siemens, Accenture and OSIsoft to provide comprehensive IoT solutions

     

    We hope you join us at the Internet of Things track in The Hague

     

    Gero Bieser & Holger Schweinfurth


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    Like many other industries, the Utilities Industry is in the middle of a dramatic transformation process: The ongoing digitization of classical business processes goes hand in hand with groundbreaking technical innovations and massively changing market dynamics. However, traditional ERP and Customer Information Systems cannot manage the increasing need to combine business transactions with real-time information and the resulting big data streams.


    With S/4HANA, SAP announced in  2015 the birth of a new, fundamentally different Enterprise Management Platform, which is natively designed on in-memory technology to meet the needs of the brave new digital economy. The announcement included as well the industry add-on solutions from SAP. Consequently, the disclosed roadmap for a holistically reimaged SAP Industry Solution for Utilities on S/4HANA was a highlight of last year’s International Utilities Conference in Berlin.


    Now it’s time to do a first stock-take and to have a look at the first delivery milestones of SAP’s S/4HANA Utilities solution. Our presentation SAP’s Innovation Road Map for the Digital Utility” will explain in detail what you can expect from the first S/4HANA industry release, which has already been  available since November 2015. Moreover, we will provide an update on the planned development schedule and reveal a first glimpse on the new FIORI user interfaces that we plan to release with the next S/4HANA edition.



    The new FIORI-based User Interface of SAP S/4HANA for Utilities (SAP Labs Preview)*

    SAP labs preview.png

    Also, learn more about our envisioned new SAP Meter Data Management solution, which will converge IT and OT data and processes based on the SAP IoT Platform.


    Furthermore, we are going to show you how our Customer Engagement & Commerce solutions complement the S/4HANA Utilities portfolio with already available and planned industry-specific enhancements on-premise and in the cloud.


    Last, not least, we will outline the business value of S/4HANA for Utilities based on some concrete examples and KPIs.


    If you would like to hear more about this topic, please join our presentation on April 12 (Track 1: Value of Platform, from 14:15 - 15:00 a.m.) at the International SAP Conference for Utilities in The Hague.


    We look very much forward to seeing you there!


    Stefan Engelhardt & Dieter Körber



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    Stay tuned for more details, and remember to sign upfor the conference!

    To get regular updates,follow us on Twitter SAP Industries #SAPUtilities.




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    Are you ready to dive into the world of digitalization?

    Come experience our “Touch Innovation” lounge and see how new technologies let you reimagine business models, business processes and work in general.


    Located in the middle of the exhibition, our area gives you the opportunity to experience 3D printing, drones, Google Glasses and more at first hand.
    Connect with our experts and learn how these technologies and SAP solution can help you to become a digital company.


    Check out the SAP Digital Boardroom and see how this next-generation digital solution contextualizes the boardroom experience across people, places, and devices into a real-time enterprise experience. Built on SAP Cloud for Analytics, the SAP Digital Boardroom integrates with SAP S/4HANA Lines of Business data and other applications and data sources, to provide a single source of truth about a company’s most important business metrics to monitor, simulate, and drive change in the digital economy.

     

     

     

    For more detailed information about SAP’s exhibition offering please visit the event web site.

    Looking forward seeing you in The Hague!

     

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    Blog written by Rui Mano, Choice Technologies and Stefan Wolf, SAP


    Today one of the most difficult challenges to Utilities is fighting meter fraud and theft.


    Electrical Utilities lose 85 Billion US$ per year worldwide with theft and meter tampering on electricity distribution. Significant numbers also affect water and gas distribution business.


    This huge amount of money is partially included in the tariff (i.e. paid by the honest clients), or subsidized (which means is supported by taxpayers) and the rest of it is pure loss of revenue in Utilities’ balance sheets. Huge amounts of electricity, water and gas are purchased by the Utility, are produced, transmitted, distributed, operated and maintained, but not invoiced causing immense loss to honest customers, taxpayers and Utilities.


    Today, most Utilities use home-developed applications, which are no more than SQL queries or Excel spreadsheets to handle the very complex tasks of finding out the customers that fool metering and steal their profits. These tools are clearly not enough to solve this great challenge.


    One of the pillars that support companies in the competitive scenario is software technologies created to help achieving best results / revenue optimization through analytics and manipulation of large amounts of data (Big Data) and knowledge that already exists in the corporation to generate actionable insights.


    Choice Technologies has developed and improved along a decade, software applications that help Utilities to handle the problem and reduce their losses, bringing benefits for the whole society - the Utility, the honest clients and taxpayers, and the environment.


    Revenue Intelligence (TM), Choice Technology suite of revenue assurance software applications integrated with SAP HANA (the Platform by SAP for Next-Generation Applications and Analytics), is a predictive analytics software that applies the most advanced artificial intelligence techniques to detect meter fraud and theft in the Utility industry.


    Revenue Intelligence covers the full spectrum of theft detection through operation management and control, including self-improvement via computer self-learning and genetic algorithms. This supports for adaptation, preventing from new form of fraud to fool programmed patterns.


    Revenue Intelligence is the most complete and technologically advanced analytical and operation software in the market - and works wonderfully on top of SAP HANA.

    Nevertheless, software is not all. We will discuss methodologies and processes like the Intelligence Center (TM) that supports Utilities with methodologies and theft detection patterns, a knowledge base proved along our long practical experience with several Utilities in many geographies, and successful to detect theft / meter fraud and improve utility recovery in a consumer base of more than 30 million utility customers. One of our clients has improved energy recovery by 400%, which means more than US$40 mi additional EBITDA per year. The Revenue Intelligence together with the Intelligence Center has supported Utilities in providing a RoI (Return on Investment) in very short time, and a very positive cash flow.


    Participate in the following workshop and learn how you can benefit from this technological masterpiece to leverage the revenue of your Company:

    Workshop 7:Revenue Protection with Choice Technologies and SAPon Monday April 11 from 2:00 to 5:30 p.m. at theInternational SAP Conference for Utilitiesin The Hague, Netherlands.


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    To get regular updates,follow us on TwitterSAP Industries #SAPUtilities.


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    We are pleased to announce that  second official classroom training for North America,  WNAUMC Multichannel Foundation for Utilities will be offered at SAP Labs in Montreal, Canada (See map) on the 18th and 19th of April 2016. Registration is now open here.

     


    Why Attend?

    SAP Multichannel Foundation for Utilities MCFhas been very successful since it was first released in 2013.  Today, we have a number of customers who are, either currently implementing, or are planning an implementation in the near future.  If you are one of those customers/partners, this training is for you!

     

    Moreover, since the first MCF training for North America offered in February last year, we have had 3 new releases and we have released a mobile application called SAP Self-Service for Utilitieson the Apple and the Android app stores.   In this second edition of the training, we will cover these new releases and briefly cover the mobile app as well. 

     

    Who is this training for?

    This training course is aimed at project managers, consultants, and key users who are in charge of the implementation and support of SAP Multichannel Foundation for Utilities.

     

    What topics will be covered?

    In this two day classroom training, you will gain in-depth knowledge of the solution, including product features, architecture, extensibility, user management and deployment.

     

    What are the pre-requisites?

    We recommend that you have working knowledge of OData, ABAP, ABAP OO, HTML5/SAPUI5, CSS, and JavaScript. Recommended SAP training courses include GW100 SAP Gateway Building Data Services, WDE300 Developing UIs using HTML5 Fundamentals, and WDE360 Developing UIs using HTML5 and SAPUI5.

     

     

    If you have any questions, please feel free to contact asif.dogar@sap.com or william.eastman@sap.com.


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    SAP S/4HANA Enterprise Management solution is the foundation, covering a massive wave of simplification and innovations in the core related to mission-critical business processes in human resources, finance, sales, service, procurement and sourcing, manufacturing, supply chain, asset management, research and development.

    Last week, SAP offered two webinars for partners to discuss the relevance and implications of the innovations coming with SAP S/4HANA for the utilities solutions and customers.

    The webinars drew a strong attendance of more than 400 attendees and the recording is now available.

    You can access the recording and pdf of the session through the following link:

    Link to Session Replay

    In order to access the recording, please ensure you have signed up for the SAP Passport. By applying for the SAP Passport with your portal user ID and password, you can also access all portals without entering your user ID and password again. It will take you less than one minute. Tell Me More


    While we were able to talk about the SAP direction, share innovations and use cases from the utilities industry and have a quick introduction into S/4HANA conversions, a one hour webinar cannot address everything and all questions.

    Therefore we invite our partner ecosystem to hear more about S/4HANA at our upcoming International SAP Conference for Utilities, which will take place in The Hague, Netherlands from April 11 - 13, 2016. This event presents a world-class networking and learning opportunity. Take advantage of the opportunity to meet one on one with our executive team and solutions experts, as well as global customers.

     

    Download your copy of the detailed agenda now and register your place.

     



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    New Capabilities from OSIsoft and SAP pair IT data with operational data to capitalize on the convergence and integration of this disparate data sources.


    Earlier in January, OSIsoft, a global leader enabling operational intelligence, announced the signing of a global reseller agreement with SAP. As part of the agreement, SAP will resell the OSIsoft solution as the SAP HANA® IoT Connector by OSIsoft. The new connector helps companies combine data from their control and automation systems and their smart devices, with transactional and business data. Then SAP HANA enables them to rapidly perform retrospective and predictive analysis and deliver actionable insights across their organizations. This will then make IT and OT really integrate and converge as well as moving from things to actions and outcomes.

    As leading utilities companies are reimagining their businesses by pairing information technology with the operational technology that manages machines, devices, and other parts of their operational infrastructure to take advantage of the Internet of Things.

    Since the joining of data and tools offers many opportunities to deliver transformational business impacts through novel data insights and since the solution is available now, we want to use the opportunity at the upcoming International SAP Conference for Utilities, which will take place in The Hague, Netherlands from April 11 - 13, 2016, to talk about the first customer successes and more industry use cases.

     

    In today's connected utility world, nearly all infrastructure equipment has data to share and tapping to it is essential today and tomorrow. These connections can increase situational awareness, add transparency into utility operations and business processes, helping you preempt problems and identify opportunities for improvement. Since much of this data has been stored in the OSIsoft PI System, as it is a software suite for collecting, historicizing, finding, analyzing, delivering, and visualizing data.

     

    Joined with the power of the SAP HANA platform, utility companies can use this to enable smart grids, handle volatile renewable energy resources, and improve returns on their assets. SAP HANA IoT Connector by OSIsoft helps expose operations data for advanced analytics, visualization, and insights that include:

    • Real-time grid analytics
    • Leakage and fraud management
    • Outage prevention and management
    • Consumption and load analytics
    • Asset health management and predictive maintenance
    • Demand response management
    • Commercial load planning and virtual power plants
    • Management of wind farms

     

    We are looking forward to engaging with many of you during the conference and specifically during the presentation on Tuesday, April 12th from 5:00pm until 6:00pm.


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    Shifting the focus of data collection and analytics to the edge of the network improves equipment reliability while preventing costly, and potentially disastrous, downtime.

     

    By Seyed Mirsepassi, VP of Solutions, FogHorn Systems

     

    The unexpected failure of a steam turbine can create substantial disruption, damage, and economic loss, not only to its power plant but also the downstream power grid and the business and customers who depend on a reliable and continuous source of electricity. To prevent this, predictive maintenance has become a key part of the modern maintenance department. More power utilities are deploying such processes to maximize the reliability of their equipment by detecting potential failures before significant problems arise. 

     

    It begins with software systems that can collect and establish historical performance baseline data from each turbine as well as the entire power plant.  Edge intelligence technology can then compare this baseline data to the real-time performance monitored on a continuous basis and trigger an alarm if the real-time performance data is outside of the baseline data’s acceptable range.

     

    Edge intelligence refers to a software solution based on fog computing which extends data processing and analytics closer to the “edge” where Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) devices and sensors reside. Maintaining close proximity to these edge devices rather than sending all data to a distant centralized cloud for processing, minimizes latency allowing for maximum performance, faster response times, and more effective maintenance and operational strategies. This is becoming increasing important in cases where even a few seconds might mean the difference between a safe and orderly response and major equipment failure.

     

    With predictive maintenance, any variance from the “expected behavior” can trigger an alert.  These triggers could be based on predetermined performance rules, such as temperature or vibration outside of an acceptable range or be based on deployment of predictive models at the edge that account for historical data. The use of predictive analytics enables users to explore potential root causes and appropriate remedies.

     

    Power plant maintenance is a major undertaking so deployment of predictive analytics at the edge allows power plant operators to proactively schedule maintenance in a non-disruptive fashion to avoid outages altogether and to do so in the most cost effective manner.  One of the advantages of an intelligent edge solution is that it can respond immediately to any anomaly or malfunction before it becomes a much more serious and costly issue.  It also eliminates the need to upload massive amounts of data to remote data centers because many maintenance issues can now be resolved on site using analytics and processing applications deployed at the edge.

     

    The data center or cloud will continue to play a key role by providing overall system management as well as analytics and machine learning functions that require the computing power of a cloud/datacenter. However by relying more on edge intelligence for critical latency-sensitive functions, utility companies can reduce overall bandwidth and data processing costs and operational delays by sending only non-critical information to the data center or cloud for analysis.

     

    In summary, a predictive maintenance solution that utilizes edge intelligence can maximize revenue and customer satisfaction by reducing maintenance and repair costs and by preventing disruptive downtime and energy blackouts.


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    "How to Create Your UX Strategy and Start Your UX Journey" is a special workshop taking place during the International SAP Conference for Utilities in The Hague this April.

    Through a combination of presentations, hands-on exercises, and open discussion in the group, this workshop will explain how to develop and successfully execute a user experience (UX) strategy. You will learn how you can boost the innovation capabilities inside your organization by adopting design thinking and design doing.

     

    Workshop highlights:

     

    •     Learn the process for creating your own UX strategy
    •     Get an update on SAP’s UX direction
    •     Define your UX vision
    •     What prevents you from providing a top class UX?
    •     Create your UX roadmap
    •     Engage in open discussion with experts on SAP UX and utilities throughout the workshop

     

    For more information, visit the conference web site >


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    Read what Benjamin Beberness, Snohomish County PUD says about his role within the company and the challenges he came across.

     

    "Here at SnoPUD, we are hard at work transforming our traditional utility into a digital one, but we didn’t start yesterday."


    "In 2012, we introduced our strategy for our corporate platform (IT).  We choose SAP/HANA as the platform with the target of getting rid of approximately 80 legacy big and small systems."


    "As we have gone through significant changes, we are developing not only the change management processes required for agility, but a business  process focus that helps with a holistic view and helps us  break down organizational barriers."

     

    Read the full article >


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    With only a couple of weeks left until the International SAP Conference for Utilities, it is highly advised to register online if you are planning to attend this event. Register here >

     

    With fantastic speakers lined up this year and customer case studies from ACEA, Alliander, EDP, EPM, ESB, Eskom, Farys, Loudoun Water, PPC, RWE, SA Power Networks, Snohomish County PUD, Tata Power, TEPCO, Thames Water and more,  this is the 2016’s landmark event for the utilities community.

     

    Do not miss out!

     

    Visit the conference web site for more information or contact us if you have any questions at info@tacook.com or +44 121 2003810.


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    If you face the error message EL-592 while performing Simulation from EASIM using Simulation Scenario Category as 'Simulation Period with Rate Category Comparison' then please read ahead.

     

     

    Issue

     

    When you try to simulate a billing period using Simulation Workbench transaction EASIM where you use Simulation Scenario which has 'Simulation Period with Rate Category Comparison' as Simulation Scenario category, you get the below error message:

     

    Function module ISU_MRRESULT_DEMARCATE: Prorated consumption not within valid range

    Message: EL592

     

    Diagnosis

     

    Due to the specified date ranges, the interpolated consumption value must be between the consumption value at the start and the consumption value at the end. This is not the case here.

     

    The cause of this error is internal, and is probably due to errors that occurred during transfer of the parameters.

     

    Procedure

    Contact SAP.

     

    Root Cause

     

    This error is due to a program error in standard SAP where it fetches the historical meter reads and assumes that quantity determination is active in the meter reading.

     

    Solution

     

    Implement the SAP Note 2127534 - EASIM: EL-592 Consumption not in validity area


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    Today, Finance departments cannot afford a stand-still in a rapid changing digital economy. SAP has massively invested to turn SAP ERP into a strategic digital core to enable Digital Finance.

     

    By the way, what means Digital Finance?

    My vision of digital finance is a new level of efficiency allowed by drastic simplification. What if CFO's were able to get live any performance analysis or simulation? In times where industry barriers tend to blur, the ability to immediately know where you stand and where to go is a key differentiator. To survive in fast evolving markets, most Utilities have to redefine their value chain and identify corresponding strategic investment & divestment.

     

    Take advantage of the Workshop Exploring the Value of Digitalization in Utilities to learn about Finance transformation in your industry. What results have been achieved by early adopters? Discover how far you may improve key performance indicators thanks to digitalization of finance. Know the tools and methodologies to quantify the value of Finance transformation in your company. This interactive workshop is a unique opportunity to learn and share about Digitalization.

     

    I am looking forward to seeing you in The Hague.

     

    Thomas Roullet

    Value Engineer for Energy & natural Resources


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