Utilities are undergoing a major business transformation as the world moves from the use of carbon-based energy to much cleaner sources in an attempt to reduce carbon emissions and replace dwindling fossil fuel supplies. As a result, the transmission and distribution networks in particular have to adapt to the need of matching demand with intermittent supply.
The energy sector has no choice but to deploy new technologies, develop and drive more collaborative business models and engage a new type of customer who is actively participating in the generation and storage of renewable energy. Utilities need to find innovative and cost-effective ways in which to manage new energy systems effectively.
Creating a platform of learning
Forward-thinking utilities are keen to make the necessary changes in order to prosper in the new energy future. While recognising the challenges and opportunities that accompany the transformation, utilities want to materialise the vision they have for their businesses, explains Miguel Gaspar Silva, EMEA Industry Director Utilities, SAP. He explains: “They want to learn and understand their roadmap to make this vision a reality within their organisations. Utilities are seeking a platform to gain a better understanding of what to expect and what they still need to do in order to turn challenges into opportunities.”
The International SAP Conference for Utilities, to be held from 11-13 April at The Hague, Netherlands, provides such a platform. One of the largest utilities conference in Europe for almost 20 years now, it brings many executives together to discuss specific challenges, trends, business information and specifically challenges addressed by SAP-based solutions. The Conference offers attendees a wide range of topics and discussions which aims to meet the growing need to develop a wide range of skills, as well as ‘harmonise’ departments and stakeholders within an organisation, he adds.
“Utilities want to know how to drive transformation across their entire business, from asset management to customer engagement. While topics are discussed in isolation, there is in this SAP conference, an opportunity through workshops and discussion to leverage synergies between them, thereby creating a reliable and integrated view of the end to end solution.”
Access to a variety of diverse topics is only part of the story.By pulling these conversations together, utilities can move forward with business process execution for the new energy sector.
Key discussion points for any utility over the course of the next 2 years will continue to be the smart grid – a key transformation area in which utilities are investing a great deal of time and finance, in order to achieve greater value from the higher degree of automation and collection of meter reading data.
The Internet of Things and smart assets are also high on the agenda for the innovative utility, along with improving the overall customer experience and offering through the digital experience. These, combined with transformation across business processes which will involve finance, human resources, procurement and vendor collaboration, will be a differentiator in the future.
“Utilities are wanting to gain a better understanding of the architecture of the future and how much they can or should accommodate when it comes to cloud paradigm and cloud based solutions to address business processes.”
The International SAP Conference for Utilities delivers diversity and key insights
Workshops will give attendees the opportunity to review product functionality, dive deeper into topics, get practical examples, participate in discussions, go through online demonstrations and determine the business benefits of each solution. Each workshop offers attendees a unique opportunity to address challenges through discussion with peers, and gain valuable guidance from some of the most knowledgeable experts on SAP applications.
“The reason why so many people attend the conference is because discussions are very focused, thereby offering them more value. In addition to this, SAP’s extensive footprint in Europe’s energy sector gives utilities an ideal opportunity to network. We are playing a major role in the transformation process and support the sector with Asset, Energy and Customer Centric solutions for the digital energy network of the future.”
With over 800 delegates from across the international utilities industry, attendees can look forward to a truly global conference for IT and business professionals. The conference will once again be co-located with the International SAP Conference for Oil and Gas, giving attendees an unrivalled opportunity to meet and gather cross-industry best practice from over 1200 senior executives in the wider energy industry.
To register for the event, visit International SAP Conference for Utilities.