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Operational excellence solutions from AWEA’s OMS conference

Operational excellence solutions from AWEA’s OMS conference
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How would you answer the question, “How can the wind industry achieve O&M excellence?”

AWEA and sponsor Uptake asked that question of industry leaders at the AWEA Wind Project O&M and Safety Conference in February. During a Leadership Forum on operational excellence held the day before the conference, participants were split into two groups – one of managers and directors, and one of executives. Attendees then completed a series of exercises to outline the industry’s biggest barriers to O&M excellence and brainstormed how we might overcome them.

The challenge and opportunity that came up most in both groups was data– whether it was making that data actionable, having a single objective source of truth, or ensuring transparency.

The combined result? See for yourself!

Data dominated

Data was the most-discussed topic in both groups, which followed an emerging trend from this year’s OMS conference overall. No surprise, given that global consulting firm McKinsey & Company found that 99 percent of data in some industrial sectors is unused.

Both groups identified O&M “nirvana” as a single source of truth for all operations information. An ideal solution would minimize silos between management, operations, service providers and equipment manufacturers. What that looks like took several directions:

  1. Increasing transparency by using aligning OEM and operator goals through shared tools and open OEM technical information.
  2. Optimizing data access through reliable real-time data, as well as standard measures of asset performance tracking and efficiency.
  3. Prioritizing information and data through decreased noise. This would be achieved through less and better-connected systems, as well as data systems that are actionable.
  4. Optimizing field services through data-driven maintenance that is less manual, facilitates the capture of “tribal knowledge,” and switches operations from reactive to proactive.

Learn more: The executive view vs. the director/manager view

Wondering which group was more focused on safety? Information transparency? It’s not what you’d expect.

Join AWEA for a webinar on March 28 at noon ET to learn what differed between the two operational excellence sessions at AWEA OMS, and how they prioritized the challenges and opportunities. REGISTER HERE.

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Ryan Blitstein is Vice President of Renewable Energy at Uptake, where he helped create the energy business unit and now leads strategy and operations for its wind and solar power divisions. Prior to joining Uptake, Ryan was founding CEO of CHANGE Illinois, the hub of the state’s political reform movement, and Executive Director of SCE, a social investment organization. Ryan’s career began as an investigative reporter for publications including The New York Times, Fast Company and BusinessWeek. He holds degrees from Stanford University and Columbia University.

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