Utility Week

UTILITY Week 20th March 2015

Utility Week - authoritative, impartial and essential reading for senior people within utilities, regulators and government

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Page 12 of 31

"There needs to be organisational aware- ness of the importance of building resilience into core business processes rather than seeing it as part of corporate social responsibility." Caroline Galvan, economist, World Economic Forum, p16 "If organisations fall victim to a cyber attack, there could be an impact on opera- tions, trust, reputation, safety, competitive positioning and the financial stability of these organisa- tions and national economies." Justin Lowe, energy security expert, PA Consulting Group, p17 "A resilient leadership team does not panic, nor is it swayed from doing the right thing." Hugh Thornycroft, head of Spencer Stuart's Industrial and Energy practices in London, p18 Resilience /Change/Trust There to serve, all of the time The essential nature of utility services coupled with increased environmental and man-made risk throws the spotlight on resilience. UtilityWeek S P E C I A L R E P O RT: PA RT 3 / M A RC H 2 0 1 5 Points of view T he trouble with ensuring resilience in today's world is complexity. The evolution of society, technology and environ- mental awareness are adding new challenges to resilience and aggra- vating old ones in a Spirograph of interconnected risk. For UK utilities, understanding the interplay of these risks, and hav- ing robust response plans for them, is fundamental to their ability to sustain the supply of heat, power and water to individuals, communities and businesses across the country. In short, soci- ety and the economy – not to mention the prosperity of utility companies themselves– rely on resilience. In recent years, extreme weather events and a declining capacity margin have reminded us that resilience cannot be taken for granted. The winter of 2013/14 saw parts of the UK again struck by devastating floods. At the same time, high winds le many with- out power and utilities are still dealing with the fallout from these events in terms of damage to assets, but perhaps more impor- tantly, in terms of damage to their relation- ships with customers. As we forge ahead into a world of smart technology, dynamic demand management and renewable energy generation, these tattered relationships need to be mended or utilities will sacrifice both revenue and efficiency. To do this, proving resilience will once more be key, this time in relation to data capture and security. Again, public confidence in data security has recently been shaken. The hack late last year of Sony Pictures Studios, purportedly at the hands of the North Korean government, resulted in the release of a mass of sensitive and sometimes highly embar- rassing emails, throwing into stark relief how valuable, and vulnerable, our communica- tion systems are. It is vital that utilities do not underestimate how much of a target their crit- ical infrastructure and growing consumer information base present to cyber criminals, and that they take steps to secure them. This presents a twofold challenge. The first involves infrastructure replacement and reinforcement so that it is fit for purpose in a world driven by smart technology. Second, it requires an urgent recruitment and upskill- ing drive across the sector and its supply chain. Because without the right expertise in the workforce, resilience will remain a dis- tant dream. All these perspectives on resilience and more will be up for debate on the third day of Utility Week Live's Keynote Conference, 21-23 of April. The agenda is driven by con- tributions from outside the sector, opening the minds of utility leaders to best practice and new perspectives from experts who have experience in dealing with complex risk. Find out more at www.utilityweek- keynote.com and explore this special report as it sets out the need for multi-faceted resilience in a complex world. HOW CAN BUSINESSES THRIVE IN ADVERSITY? JANE GRAY, INSIGHTS EDITOR UTILITY WEEK | 20TH - 26TH MARCH 2015 | 13 In association with: Read our reports on change and trust, covered at the first two days of the keynote conference. Download the pdfs at: www.utilityweek.co.uk

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