“Bluleader assisted us in achieving our goals, consolidating the application landscape and driving adoption across the business” – James Marcelo, Project Manager, Safety Reset Programme

Ausgrid are an Australian Electricity Distribution company who own, maintain and operate electrical networks, and specifically, the networks of over 1.7 million customers in New South Wales, Australia.

Technicians carry out site-based inspections across Sydney, the Central Coast and Hunter regions of NSW to capture information for compliance with Formal Safety Assessment (FSA) requirements. The importance of this is to  promote a safety conversation as to identify risks and promote awareness  to improve workplace safety and reduce avoidable incidents.

Ausgrid wanted to replace their existing technology landscape, which they had identified as being costly and unintuitive.  Their unreliable ‘safety’ applications and paper-based forms were both time consuming and often inaccurate due to inconsistency of data recording (and data loss).  This created a compelling need for Ausgrid to implement a single, accessible and user-friendly solution which would empower users to easily and effectively capture safety data regarding each worksite, whilst prompting a safety discussion to further promote safety awareness.

There were three main challenges that Ausgrid faced with their existing set-up, the first being that the existing applications did not provide an acceptable user experience, resulting in poor user adoption. This in turn resulted in essential safety data not being captured at the required time (prior to work commencing), which made the exercise of safety awareness void. Additionally, since it was noted that the exercise of capturing information was cumbersome and slow, resulting in a large amount of time wasted prior to work commencing.  Since the incumbent systems were distributed across multiple providers and software solutions, it was increasingly difficult and costly to maintain and almost impossible to improve.  Having no consistency in how data is collated, recorded and reported meant that Ausgrid were unable to get a holistic view of the data collected. Due to the the risk of data loss, duplication and siloed data there was a significant mistrust of the solutions, often driving users to supply the bare minimum of information simply to complete the task as a formality

The Ausgrid and Bluleader collaboration led to the evaluation and ultimate adoption of the Microsoft Power Platform, which delivered the Critical Safety Applications to Ausgrid by way of employing rapid application development cycles.  Beyond fulfilling the key requirements, some significant advantages were gained, in that the custom apps were now available on any mobile device using a single corporate login. This allowed frontline workers to easily log in to record all incident, inspection & interaction information from any geography, fundamentally allowing a better data capture experience and greater trust in the recorded data.  A built-in feedback loop empowered users to recommend improvements and enhancements to the application, ensuring a continually improved user experience.

Bluleader were also instrumental in connecting the App to the back-office SAP systems, which proved to be a great advantage as Ausgid platforms were able to be integrated thereby reducing the need for large amounts of data re-entry.  This led to much greater efficiency and accuracy in the data capture process.

Another advantage evidenced throughout this project was that the team leaders and managers were now able to access deep, meaningful and real-time analytics, that in turn empowered them to employ better health and safety improvement strategies across the business.

The measurable impact for the implementation of the Microsoft Power Platform has been rapid user adoption, which significantly exceeded previous peak data capture volumes.  This provided Ausgrid with far greater knowledge through more meaningful information being captured which in turn also led to more detailed safety discussions and consequent enhanced safety of their workplace environments.

Ausgrid can now rely on trusted and instantaneous reporting which therefore ensures rapid knowledge of critical events as they happen, as well as being able to manage and avoid potential workplace incidents and injuries. The fact that standards of data capture requirements were now clear, uniform and enforced meant that Ausgrid could be assured of improved quality and reliability of their data. Notably, managers and team leaders were empowered with essential information, enabling them to affect health and safety improvements, ultimately increasing their safety profile.

Finally, Ausgrid were able to leverage their existing Microsoft license subscriptionsto to provide cost-effective solutions by replacing the expensive legacy software costs without incurring large licensing overheads.

The future for Ausgrid from a technology standpoint looks bright.  Introducing the Microsoft Power Platform has enabled further improvements to the applications and the resulting powerful insights which have already started to lead to improved health and safety strategies for the organisation.  This result is a far richer functionality of the application, in turn providing Ausgrid with the ability to continually improve their safety standards

The success of this solution has led to the onboarding of other paper-based and digital forms to a single platformwhich has enabled the realisation of Ausgrid’s vision of having a single, full enterprise solution. Additionally, by automating workflow, approvals and alerts, Ausgrid has been able to significantly drive increased efficiency across the business via the new platform.

Bluleader continue to partner with Ausgrid and through diligent thought-leadership and strong technical and delivery capability, intend to drive further success to Ausgrid and its customers.