Partnering With a California Utility to Establish a Robust Analytics Program

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The Challenge

In an effort to modernize operations and improve customer satisfaction, the utility initially engaged HEXstream to implement Oracle Utilities Analytics (OUA) with an emphasis on outage analytics.  Now, over four years later, the utility still partners with HEXstream on an ongoing basis to refine and improve its reporting and analytics capabilities.

In this success story, we share some of the highlights from our long-term engagement.  This includes a complex OUA implementation, data center optimization, customized data integrations, and enhanced reliability reporting.

About the Client

  • Regulated public utility providing natural gas & electric service
  • Serves over 3 million clients throughout Southern California

What We Built

Complex OUA Implementation

HEXstream implemented OUA to replace Focal Point, the utility's legacy reporting software.  During the implementation, the team configured OUA so that it would be populated with all NMS data within 5 minutes of data creation. 

The utility's team, replete with talented business and data analysts, fully grasped their organization's needs from the outset of the project.  As a result, HEXstream designed and executed several customizations to fill in gaps left by the out-of-the-box OUA offering.

These enhancements included a fully-customized Outages Dashboard showing Details at three levels: the switch plan level, across all events, and the lead event level.  HEXstream also added the ability to view crew activity at the switch plan level.  HEXstream also added fully-customized Major Incident and Customers Dashboards to meet the unique needs of the utility.

Throughout the engagement, HEXstream trained the utility's IT Team to handle OUA upgrades & installations, which they are now able to perform independently.

Optimized Data Centers

At the outset of our engagement, the utility's data centers were geographically distributed throughout their service territory.  To resolve network issues including connectivity and latency, HEXstream migrated their data centers to a central location before migrating OUA and OUA data to these centers.  Upon finishing the migration, HEXstream worked with the utility to create a Disaster Recovery Server to mitigate the risk of data loss in the event of an outage or other server interruption.

Tailored Data Integrations

Outside of OUA implementation, HEXstream has been working on data integrations to ingest data and process it so that it feeds into connected downstream applications, including other analytics tools like PowerBI and for reliability reporting.

One such integration involves sending restored outage events and associated outage remarks from NMS to OUA and then to CISCO OUTH (outage history), either real-time or batched at a minimum of every ten minutes.  The OUA process will truncate and reload the CISCO DB2 data when updates come in on a restored event to provide the latest changes correctly (e.g., deleted steps or events are removed) to OUTH. 

Strengthened Reliability Reporting Capabilities

HEXstream helped move the utility’s reliability team from an outdated, excel-based tool to OUA.  At the time of publication, the team is working on feeding OUA Reliability Data into a separate, dedicated Reliability application.  HEXstream is also developing new Reliability Dashboards that allow for segmentation editing.  The team is completing a 10 year historical data migration into OUA to help analysts identify trends in past reliability performance and anticipate future issues.

How can we help your utility manage and analyze data more effectively? Ask the utilities analytics experts! 

Let's Talk!

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