With a decade of experience working in the energy sector, Robin McLaughlin has been at the forefront of the NI Energy industry. As Neueda’s Principal Consultant for Energy and Utilities, we caught up with Robin to find out more about the role Neueda has played in changing the face of energy regulation in Northern Ireland.

Robin, can you tell us about your role at Neueda?

I’m primarily responsible for supporting the engagements with Neueda’s Utilities customers. As part of this role, I am the Market Entry Coordinator within the retail energy market in NI working alongside NIE Networks. This role seeks to provide assurance around new electricity supplier entrants, as well as annual reassurance services that apply to all retail market participants in maintaining their certification status.

Tell us more about the annual reassurance services.

In 2015, we applied our wealth of industry knowledge to develop a process where we could monitor the accuracy of the transactions of NI electricity market participants. A year later, we automated this process using QlikView guided analytics software. We took our designed process to all NI Energy market participants and the NI Utility Regulator who approved its use and agreed performance targets.

What’s been the result?

The scorecard Neueda proposed to benchmark market communications was implemented and is used to provide comfort in the market and also to pinpoint specific process issues either with an individual market participant or indeed the market as a whole. We are also able to use projections to quantify what these issues are costing businesses.

We report to the NI Utility Regulator and the individual market participants in the sector every six months. Since its introduction in 2015, it has led to a reduced swing movement in errors of around 40% across the sector. Given the volume of transactions in the market, this equates to a huge saving in both time and money.

What has this meant for Neueda clients and the industry as a whole?

It means we’re able to educate market participants on the errors that their staff or indeed the industry is making, and pinpoint how they can improve their processes. However, the benefits go way beyond individual companies; it makes the wider NI electricity market more efficient, which is something we’re particularly proud of.

Stay tuned to the Neueda Knowledge blog series for more insights into the work we do and the impact it’s having beyond our business.