Our customers count on us for a flawless energy supply. To switch on the lights, turn on the heating, charge their phone, shop online and drive safely. At any time, and wherever they are. And our customers who generate or feed in energy also expect a good infrastructure and service.
This chapter is about what we do for our customers. They identified the following subjects as the most important to read about in the annual report: reliability of supply, innovation, role of energy generation, smart networks and data technology, regulation and tariffs, safe infrastructure and customer satisfaction. All these subjects are covered in this section of the annual report.
Objectives and results related to customers
Electricity outage duration
Realisation of smart meter deadline
Cable numbers with > 5 interruptions
Top risk-mitigating projects
Energy must be available at all times, and be accessible to everyone on equal terms. This is what we stand for. Alliander has over three million customers and ensures they can light and heat their homes at all times. Companies also count on us. We can only live up to these expectations if we align our services to the demands and needs of our customers. And if we excel in reliability and convenience.
Economic growth is fuelling customer demand
The Dutch economy is booming. In 2017, this sparked a sharp surge in demand for traditional connections to our network. Moreover, the energy transition is expected to spur a strong rise in total local generation capacity in the coming years. Many projects have been scheduled for the next five years, greatly expanding the energy supply from wind farms and solar parks in particular. These developments drove our company into action as well. We took steps to reduce the outage duration, accelerate the roll-out of the smart meter and play a facilitating role in the energy transition. However, connecting customers on time is a challenge and customer convenience is not improving rapidly enough. It is therefore imperative for us to increase our operational effectiveness. This means: being clear about who does what, simplifying processes and improving our internal and external collaboration to achieve the desired results. Better cooperation with local parties, in particular, is vital.
Technical skills shortage is an operational bottleneck
Despite our initiatives to enhance our planning efficiency and recruit additional staff, we are still unable to get the work done within the targeted timelines. That is a major concern to us, and we are therefore energetically in search of new colleagues who want to contribute to the energy supply of today and tomorrow. The shortage of technical skills in the labour market makes this a big challenge and poses a threat to the progress of the energy transition. Accordingly, we are also putting in place smart measures to raise our production to a structurally higher level.
Our strategy is aimed at ensuring the energy supply of today and tomorrow. We are seeking to create value for our customers through a four-pillar approach. This part of the annual report explains these pillars in more detail.