Utility Week

UTILITY Week 27th May 2016

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Page 8 of 31

That final point was made time and time again. Whatever happens in the indus- try in relation to policy, technology, and operational structures, everything should be aimed at providing a better service for consumers. With Utility Week Live 2016 addressing these topics in detail, the next few pages will run over the key themes and discussion points from the show. It's show time The industry gathered in Birmingham for the biggest utility exhibition and conference of the year – and here's what they talked about. UtilityWeek S P E C I A L R E P O RT / M AY 2 0 1 6 T housands of people descended on Bir- mingham's National Exhibition Centre for Utility Week Live 2016. This year's exhibition and conference addressed the overarching theme of innovation across the utilities, and how the sector is preparing for the future. Keynote speakers, including regulators Ofwat and Ofgem, set out their vision for the coming decades (see p10), including the adoption of competitive markets, while com- pany speakers, including those from Nissan and McLaren, talked about the innovation methodology utilities should adopt in order to acquire pace and focus in transformation. Across the seminars in the main theatres, as well as in the Pumping Station – a new addition for 2016 – representatives from the energy and water sector, alongside other experts in those industries, set out how they see utilities, how the development of com- petitive markets is changing the way they operate, how new technologies are being developed and shiing working practices, how a flexible mentality is essential for com- panies to thrive, and how all of this comes together to serve the customer. • Competition, competition, competition o Across the energy and water sectors, com- petitive markets are being viewed as a way to drive down costs and improve customer service. • Upskill for the future o Utilities need to ensure they are fit for the future, with the workforce and skills required to continue to deliver their essential ser- vices. This includes being flexible enough to adapt to any future changes. • Embrace new ways of working o Innovative new technologies are being developed across the utility sector and these need to be embraced to make the work the companies do quicker, easier, cheaper and safer. • Be customer-centric o A key theme from the show is that the utilities have to ensure everything they do is done with the customer, and the service they receive, in mind. KEY POINTS UTILITY WEEK | 27TH MAY - 2ND JUNE 2016 | 9 What's in this article: l  Future of regulation: p10 l  Totex: p10 l  Data and analytics: p11 l  Resilience: p12 l  Customers: p14 l  Innovation: p14 l  Skills: p15 Utilities on show THE SECOND ANNUAL UTIL- ITY WEEK LIVE EXHIBITION AND CONFERENCE WAS BIGGER AND BETTER THAN EVER. Utility Week Live is the UK's only exhibition dedicated to the UK's gas, electricity and water industries, connecting Britain's utilities to their suppliers, contractors and partners. The show debuted in 2015, building on the rich heritage of IWEX, Faversham House's long-standing water and wastewater exhibition. The headline theme of this year's show was innova- tion, with content focusing on the electricity, gas and water sectors, along with two new additions for 2016: heat and streetworks. Underneath the overarch- ing theme were five content streams that helped to shape the debate over the two days. These were: innovation, skills, data and analytics, totex, resilience, and customers. Vital statistics Speakers: 170 Exhibitors (including the people on the EIC Innovation Zone): 150 Camera crews: 5 Theatres: 6 Show features and zones: 8 Visitor statistics to be released.

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