The stakes were high. New regulations were applied to the connections activities of the distribution network operators which defined about 40 new standards of performance that would be introduced. If the standards were not met then financial penalties had to be paid to customers, and if the aggregate performance was less than 90% adherence then that would be a failure of a licence condition, resulting in a significant fine being imposed by the regulator. All of the standards were reportable to the regulator on a quarterly basis and the performance published. Failure to measure and report performance by the deadline was also going to be punished by a fine. It was only six months before the implementation deadline.
A project team was set up, and I was appointed to the role of Business Programme Lead. The consultancy company who were to be the delivery partner for the project had already been appointed. Therefore I:
- Established the project team, stakeholder groups, project board.
- Managed the project to ensure that the implementation of the system was on time, to specification and on budget.
- Led the project team, ensuring that the necessary resources were available and effective.
- Managed the various stakeholders including affected staff, the wider business, contractors, customer representatives and the project steering group.
- Managed the consultant partner to ensure delivery as per contract and adherence to budget.
Under my management the project:
- Introduced an interim measurement tool familiarise staff with the need to record data on every job and to measure current performance.
- Assessed the process improvement required to enable compliance and used lean process improvement techniques.
- Held workshops to assess business requirements for the system and the priority.
- Defined the specification of the system to measure and report performance and meet the business requirements.
- Built and tested the system, including comprehensive acceptance testing by the business, to verify completeness and compliance.
- Communicated to staff and contractors to explain the reasoning for the measures being introduced, what they meant for the organisation, and how they worked.
- Trained staff to use the system. Classroom training and individual training was used in advance of go-live; floor-walkers and systems experts provided support during and after launch.
- Managed the go-live of the system and supported the system after go-live.
- Delivered further development of the system to improve the functionality to improve business processes.
- The IT system was built, tested and implemented on time: it went live early September for October go-live of the regulations.
- The project specification was delivered in the live system.
- The new business processes were documented and trained to staff and contractors.
- Excellent compliance to the new processes was achieved.
The new regulatory standards were exceeded. The licence condition required a minimum of 90% compliance, typical DNO compliance was 99.4%, and business results were better than 99.8%.