Strategic spares sorted

Powerco’s electricity network is designed and maintained to ensure a reliable power supply to our customers.

If there’s a critical equipment failure though, we need ‘strategic spares’ on hand so the network can be repaired, and power restored quickly and safely.

While our fault contractors have the likes of power poles, cables and fuses in stock, strategic spares, such as power transformers, high-capacity underground cables, ring main units, and critical protection and control equipment, aren’t easily sourced – with lead-in times of many months.

So, during 2020-21, we carried out a review of the different types of equipment on our electricity network, including the required repair times and the risk to supply for specific equipment failures.

The result? We now have more than $3 million of network equipment in stock to continue to ensure a reliable power supply to our customers.

A key element of the project is the use of our SAP business software, which gives us the ability to see what spares we’ve got, where they are and when we purchased them.

“It allows us to effectively manage the materials, where previously we never had that level of control or visibility,” Electricity Commercial and Contracts Manager Kieran O’Neill says.

“In the past, someone would buy spares and they would go into a box, or they would go into the warehouse, and it was hard to know or see what was available when needed. Because they don’t get used every day, there was the risk of them being forgotten or lost. Not anymore.”

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