The National Grid’s industrial and commercial metering business is looking for a new enterprise resource planning and customer intelligence system (ERP/CIS) designed for its specific needs.
The commercial business shares the existing SAP system the domestic metering business, and it was designed with the requirements that division in mind.
The new system will fulfil a range of functions, including optimising the planning and delivery of work, capturing data about ongoing work in the field for reporting purposes, and a web portal for customer and service provider self-service.
According to the tender document, the National Grid is looking for system that will help accelerate the deployment of meters to commercial customers. It wants to avoid developing expensive bespoke additions to the current software.
National Grid also wants the solution hosted, supported, and integrated with the rest of its stack by a third party. The provisional length for all contracts is five years. National Grid makes an explicit condition that winning companies will be required to participate actively in its social and environmental objectives.
This procurement comes as the National Grid overhauls its entire enterprise architecture to prepare its business for the ‘smart-grid’, as National Grid’s chief enterprise architect, Nigel Davies, explained to Information Age.
"In the future, there’s going to be a two-way flow within the distribution grid itself as energy generation is more distributed,” Davies said. “And the supply side will be much less predictable, because renewable sources, by their nature, don’t provide a steady stream of power.”
National Grid sold off its smart metering business, OnStream, in October last year to Macquarie Bank for £274m. National Grid’s metering subsidiary focuses on traditional gas meters exclusively.