Bob Theobald, Managing Director, Power On Connections talks about making self-service happen…
It has been just over a year since the new Electricity Market Competition in Connections Code of Practice was formally approved by Ofgem. Customers and ICPs are now starting to reap the benefits brought about by the Code.
The Code mandates that DNOs, (the successors to the pre-privatisation regional electricity companies) must as far as reasonably practicable, minimise their involvement in the provision of new connections by Independent Connection Providers (ICP’s) to their customers.
DNOs are required to provide as high a standard of service to ICPs, as it would to its own connections business.
Finally, DNOs must work to harmonise their processes and procedures relating to Competition in Connections, in line with industry best practice allowing ICPs to freely and easily operate across DNO boundaries.
Leading the way…
Power on Connections founded in 2003, continues to be amongst the first to take the next steps by carrying out works that, until now, had being exclusively completed by the DNO and its contractors. In all of the DNO regions in which Power On operate, the company has the ability to:
- Identify the location on the DNO’s network that the new connection is to be made;
- Self-Approve the design of the network extension to accommodate any new network extension;
- Complete all of the necessary operational switching activity on the DNO network to facilitate the connection of the newly constructed assets;
- Complete to final joints to the existing DNO Distribution System.
Power On is the driving the change forward and have achieved NER’s accreditation for self-assessment, self-design self-operation and self-connection across many of the DNO regions.
Other ICPs are following in their path, all of which is great news for customers, as further competition will drive up standards and drive down prices.
More to do…
There is still significant room for improvement. The scope of works that ICPs can undertake in each DNO region varies, as a failure of some DNOs to embrace the spirit of the Code of Practice in its entirety.
Power On will continue to push the boundaries, to minimise the touch points between it and the DNO, during the process of a customer making their original enquiry to Power On and the electricity infrastructure works energised and handed over for adoption.
Power On is focused on delivering an exceptional level of customer service and would like to have full control over that process and be fully accountable to its client, thereby being able to deliver against our commitment to provide Program and Cost Certainty.
DNOs must work to harmonise their processes and procedures relating to Competition in Connections, allowing ICPs to work across DNO boundaries.
The Code of Practice is a living document and changes will be made through the governance process to address the lack of a harmonised approach amongst DNOs. Further process improvements will be implemented through the experience obtained by ICPs complete these Self Services Activities.
Power On Connections
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