Inaccurate data costs UK utilities


New research commissioned by LogicaCMG, an international consultancy, reveals that one-fifth of utilities surveyed in the UK estimate that data inadequacies cost them up to £5 million a year. Despite this, some companies say they have never undertaken a detailed data assessment which would tell them what data is held, where gaps occur and what needs to be done to improve the quality of the data.

Industry regulation in the UK has placed added pressure on utilities to collect more data on their physical assets. LogicaCMG UK’s research showed, however, that while 84% of utilities recognise regulation as a key driver for better data, 39% are still unsure of the financial investment that is being made to improve data quality. Utilities are overlooking how data can be used as an asset to the company, and are apparently failing to apply it intelligently when making investment and operational decisions. 96% of those surveyed felt that an improvement in data accuracy of just 10% would result in an improvement in business performance.

The research was conducted by Coleman Parkes, and covered 40% of the UK utilities market. Interviews were with senior and middle managers in water, gas and electricity utilities.