How utilities use RCD

Aladon methodologies are helping utilities today

Utilities today around the world face similar challenges of aging equipment, as well as a retiring workforce. With Aladon thoughtware and software, we are working together with utility companies in water, electric, sanitary and oil industries to build a reliability culture.

These same organizations traditionally tend to be risk-averse. One of the fundamental ways utilities can address these challenges is with our Reliability Centered Design™ (RCD™) methodology. Aladon owns the trademark for the RCD™ methodology, and we see a lot of growth in that business right now, mostly with utilities. 

Last year we finished a fairly large RCD project with a company on the East Coast. Before we started, the municipality there was uncertain about the amount of equipment they needed to actually fulfill requirements. Reducing redundancy helps to lower costs and lower risks, but they were wary about managing risk if there was less equipment available. Through the process of RCD, we were able to actually quantify what they really need. Once that was complete, we applied that same rigor to other projects and replicated the success. 

Utility companies see the value in using reliability-centered design

Utility companies see the value in using RCD, especially when we are able to help them to implement RCD into the design early on. This is because the sooner we start to integrate RCD principles, the better the result will be in the end. Our experience shows that when utility companies have something designed, it’s difficult to give up on that plan – even if it’s only on a drawing. Once a design has been formulated on a drawing, the team can look at the redundancies and at some safety equipment, and then they really don’t want to give it up. Utilities are traditionally very risk-averse, especially once a project is planned on paper. 

Instead, we like to use RCD to manage the risk from the beginning of the design. The less equipment in the design, the higher the reliability. The utility organization never has to give up something that they didn’t consider if the design is lean from the start. We’ve seen some significant wins in the reliability-centered design projects where the utilities, especially, see the value in managing risk from the start of a project, rather than trying to avoid it.

Utilities we work with are finding Aladon’s thoughtware and software essential to address the challenge of its aging workforce

One of the other reasons why the Aladon methodologies are so important to some of our clients is that in the public utility space about 60 percent of the workforces are retiring in the next five years. This is a whole demographic change, and these companies must capture that knowledge. RCM3™ is one of the tools that utilities use to not just capture the knowledge but to also capture it in a way that they can transfer the knowledge to the next generation. This is essential because it is not just one utility that faces this challenge, but we see it as a rule throughout the industry at the moment. As utility workers retire, Aladon’s methodologies help these organizations pass along the years of knowledge employees possess.

Learn more about RCD