National Grid is one of the world’s largest publicly listed utilities, focused on the safe, reliable, and efficient transmission and distribution of electricity and gas to millions of customers and communities. Spanning the UK and US, National Grid lies at the heart of a transforming energy system.
National Grid was looking to digitize its asset investment planning and project portfolio management capabilities. Copperleaf® was selected four times through independent RFP processes run by each National Grid business unit. Copperleaf Portfolio™ was initially implemented at National Grid’s US Gas business in 2017. Subsequently, Copperleaf Asset™ and Copperleaf Portfolio were implemented at National Gas Transmission (previously National Grid Gas Transmission) and National Grid Electricity Transmission (NGET) in the UK the following year. In 2021, the company expanded the Copperleaf system to its electricity business in the US.
Following the initial selections across the National Grid business units, National Grid Partners (NGP) invested US$10 million in Copperleaf in 2019. NGP is the venture investment arm National Grid created to ‘future-proof itself’ and advance the energy systems of tomorrow.
NGET and Copperleaf co-developed an innovative Circuit Optimization solution, known as Intelligent Bundling, which enables the company to find the optimal intervention schedule for each asset in the transmission network, while considering the benefits of bundling gains, outage costs and resource constraints, plus any relevant business rules.
NGET decreased the time to develop and commit to plan by 50%, and experienced a 20%-30% increase in efficiency compared to previous plans due to a reduction in outages, improved productivity, and increased interventions. This ground-breaking project won the Innovation Award at the 2020 IAM Global Awards and was also awarded the 2020 People’s Choice Award—voted for by all attendees at the IAM Annual Conference and the IAM North American Conference.
Working with Copperleaf has really felt like working with a partner to co-create a value-based decision making framework. It’s enabled us to create a much better asset replacement plan that’s more efficient, better for our customers, and internal and external stakeholders.
Project planning can be tricky at the best of times . . . We’ve previously had to use multiple systems and processes across a number of teams, meaning lots of extra time and effort . . . But this is changing with FutureNow, which we are delivering with the help of Copperleaf.
We now have over 300 colleagues managing all their project information in one place. This is genuinely going to save us time, improve our decision-making, and give us a clear picture of each project’s value.
We spend $1 billion a year on thousands of different asset projects, but when asked, ‘what outcomes do we get for this?’, it was always tricky to answer. Copperleaf allows us to actually look at that portfolio and understand what outcomes we can achieve. For us, the biggest benefit is we could achieve the same outcomes for 10% less spend.
Optimizing asset management interventions
The electrical transmission industry has been trying to solve the complex problem of optimizing asset management interventions for many years. With no existing industry practice and the problem growing exponentially with the number of assets, National Grid needed a solution that could help it minimize the disruption of outages and the associated costs. Find out how National Grid addressed this challenge with the help of Copperleaf’s consultancy and software solutions.