When I’m asked why I’m passionate about the Business Management System (BMS), my answer is simple … every day we try to ‘Find a better way’ and ‘Do the right thing’.
We often make things too complicated for ourselves and our people, usually by being unclear on what’s important; or because our policies and procedures slow us down as they are too complex, no longer add value or constrain us from delivering. Through the BMS we have the opportunity to drive change rather than merely respond to it.
The BMS Standards were developed to provide clear guidance on what is most important to our business and what is expected of each of us, focusing on the areas of greatest value and/or highest risk. They empower each one of us to improve the way we deliver for our customers. They are the guiderails that allow us to be clearer on what’s important and to challenge the things that get in the way.
We are making good progress
Taking a pragmatic approach, we have set ourselves the challenge of meeting the Standards by April 2020. Each area of the business is now working towards achieving this challenge. And we are making good progress, seeing the value.
Through the implementation of the Procurement BMS, the UK Gas and Electricity Transmission businesses have significantly reduced the volume of non-compliant single-source requests throughout their supply chain. This ensures we are undertaking appropriate competitive tendering, which supports achieving best value from our contracts.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Revenue and Non-Utility Billing (NUB) team in the US identified a data issue when implementing the Data Management BMS. This has resulted in reducing the error rate by 14% on filings and bills being sent to Transmission customers.
The Standards are making it clear what we expect and are being used to drive capability, efficiency and consistency across the global business.
It is your responsibility to make sure your business area is meeting the Standards and to use them to question whether related policies and procedures add value – for example, are they up to date, simple to understand and easy to find? Where this is not the case, we all have a responsibility to address this.
Simplifying our business
We recently took a further step on our path to simplifying our business, with the launch of an updated version of the National Grid Book. This update incorporates the following six Group policies into the BMS Standards, enabling 70% of Group policies that overlap with BMS Standards to be removed: Corporate Risk; Requirement for Written Code of Ethics for Employees; Group Security; Environmental; Safety & Wellbeing; and, Process Safety.
While the performance requirements within the Standards remain the same, there have been some minor changes to the front pages of the Standards, along with enhancements to further improve consistency and user experience. This is an important milestone in helping to clarify what is expected of everyone who works at National Grid.
I encourage you all to take the time to read the National Grid Book* and make sure you know if your business area is compliant with the Standards and how you can support the ongoing removal of blockers, as well as seeking opportunities to simplify the documents and processes in your business area.
Group BMS Lead
Want to know more?
* You must be connected to the National Grid network to access this link.