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Question

National Simplicity Day is Approaching: How are you ensuring your internal systems for employees are kept as simple as they can be?

Matt Chester's picture
Energy Analyst Chester Energy and Policy

Official Energy Central Community Manager of Generation and Energy Management Networks. Matt is an energy analyst in Orlando FL (by way of Washington DC) working as an independent energy...

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  • Jul 8, 2021 12:45 pm GMT
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For utility employees, complex HR processes can end up being more of a burden than a help if they don't know what systems they're supposed to be using, if they take more time to use than they end up saving, or if they end up pushing employees away from using them properly.

As such, simplicity can be the best friend of an HR professional. In recognition of July 12 being National Simplicity Day, how are you keeping your systems as simple as possible? 

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Matt, excellent question!
If you allow me, I would like to extend your question to the customer... how do utilities make their relationship with the customer more simplified... and how do employees care about simplicity when meeting customer demands?

Hi Matt,

Question is how to simplify the HR subsystem in a utility. Simple answer is : 

(1) clear road maps for the assigned tasks , fixed start and finish dates with as little as 1% tolerance.

(2) unique standards for accomplish and achievements.

(3) equal treatments for all participants in the tasks, no gender discriminations. 

(4) hailing team work spirits .

(5) clear criteria for promotions as well as hiring and firing.

Somehow I missed this one, Matt, and because simplicity is such an important goal in energy - for efficiency, to reduce consumption and carbon emissions, I'm re-posting the tips from your link here - a few days late, but nonetheless relevant.

 

"HOW TO OBSERVE NationalSimplicityDay

Tips to Simplifying Life

Identify what’s important to you. This list will include things, goals, and activities. While we don’t all have the ultimate goal of reaching Mars, don’t dismiss the small achievements. Those don’t necessarily equate to clutter. They’re stepping stones. However, if they aren’t a part of the bigger picture, consider slashing them.

When it comes to things, you have to admit, we hold on to some things for sentimental reasons. On the other hand, we buy too much junk for all the wrong reasons. Identify the ones that are the most important and get rid of the rest.

Put a ban on impulse buying. Make a list before any shopping trip. If it’s not on the list, it can’t be bought (unless it’s toilet paper, that’s the one exception). Otherwise, you will get by until the next trip. You will also see an improvement in your bank account.

When it comes to activities, consider the ones that are time wasters and have no value. Again, which ones are important to you? Do they bring you joy? Do they improve you or the world around you? If the answer is no to any of these questions, why is this activity still in your life?"

 

In my experience as an energy consultant for industrial, commercial and institutional energy users, most of the times there are issues to be resolved with the utility companies. 

Most utilities are organized by "departments" not by "clients". It means that utility employees are driven by department rules. 

My suggestion is changing the approach. Drive utilities per clients. If all employees have to primarily understand the clients' needs and wants everything else will be a lot easier. And simpler as well.

Bottom line: it is about understanding what's really at stake from the clients' prospective. This is simplicity!

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