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The digitisation of Britain’s utility sector is unavoidable. Done well it will play a crucial role in achieving net zero and providing better outcomes for our customers. Done badly, costs will spiral, and critical national infrastructure will fail.

The question is therefore, how do we digitise the utility sector quickly, safely, and economically? By drawing on experience from other regulated sectors, one answer is to increase the use of proven technology accelerators.

Technology accelerators are ready to use software modules which serve a specific business function. Each software module has been used in multiple digital solutions and is therefore proven to be secure and to function correctly. And, just like Lego bricks, by combining different software modules, different digital solutions can be created quickly and efficiently. However, unlike Lego bricks, technology accelerators are freely available, meaning they can be used IPR-free and without vendor lock-in.

If this sounds very different to how your business currently manages technology, or perhaps even too good to be true, various examples of how accelerators are used, and how successfully, are readily available. One such example, is the technology accelerators which were used to build the Covid Pass application, because the national mood was for a reopened society, where businesses got back on track. By using accelerators, the initial digital solution was built and commissioned in weeks. Aviation is another highly regulated industry, and technology accelerators were used to create the Airhart platform. This digital, data-driven platform, currently used by Copenhagen Airport, ensures the efficient and profitable operation of the airport, happier passengers, and reduced CO2.

In a highly regulated and justifiably risk adverse sector, such as utilities, where change to critical national infrastructure needs to work first time, the applicable use-cases for technology accelerators are wide-ranging. From unlocking energy flexibility, to enabling smart grids, to enhanced AI powered predictive maintenance, to providing open data to customers, to improving cybersecurity, the list is truly extensive.

So, whilst digitisation undoubtably has a critical role to play in ensuring security of supply and achieving net zero, technology accelerators offer a safe and efficient way for the utility sector to modernise without costing the earth.

If you have any questions about digitising the utility sector or want to learn more about technology accelerators, feel free to email Ben Scott at

Ben Scott is a Principal at Netcompany, specialising in digital transformation within the Energy and Utilities sector. With a proven track record of delivering large-scale projects, he brings broad technical expertise gained from working with world-class businesses and private equity firms. Ben’s extensive experience includes pivotal roles in a global start-up and delivering mission-critical technology programs for airlines in Asia and the Middle East. He joined Netcompany in 2016, where he leads their efforts in driving digital transformation within the Energy and Utilities industry.

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