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Hitachi Energy: a 3-year partnership turning strategy into action

We’ve partnered with Hitachi Energy over the past 3 years, working together on several critical initiatives during this time. From strategic topics, like helping define the operating model, through to operational delivery, such as building the team, defining, and running the operational processes, we’ve supported our client in building out new capabilities across the organisation.

  • Outcome 1: Built and deployed a team of 11 technical resources across the globe
  • Outcome 2: Mitigated 400 instances of local IT issues

The Challenge

Following Hitachi Energy’s divestment from ABB, it was clear that there were a significant number of IT systems that were not supported by Hitachi’s new IT systems. This was due to being owned and managed locally by Hitachi Energy’s manufacturing sites, rather than by the global IT function.

Reliant on external services, these systems would stop functioning if left alone and disconnected. This would potentially result in factory issues, production stops and even revenue loss.

And that’s where our partnership began.

Hitachi Energy engaged our teams to partner in solving the problem. We helped them identify the instances of locally managed IT, understand which of these had a reliance on the external connection, and remove this, ultimately enabling business continuity. This was a significant challenge to solve, as Hitachi Energy has around 100 major manufacturing sites across 26 different countries, all of which had limited documentation on locally managed IT.

The Approach

Initially, our team worked to design the operating model and establish the core workstream components such as governance structure, key documentation, budgets, and an approach to sourcing and scaling the team. This project was known as Business IT Environments (BITE). Our team then continued to work with Hitachi Energy to support, scale and run BITE.

Broadly, our approach was split into four core stages:

Identification and agreement of scope; Which factories are in scope, what services should we offer, how should we solve this?

Discovery and analysis of findings; Identification of local IT systems with external reliance

Identification of mitigations; Assigning mitigations to the discovery findings

Deployment of mitigations; Deploying the mitigations globally to solve the issues

Due to the timeline constraints, we adopted a lean approach of failing fast, iterating and improving to build BITE over time. As a result, the approach was governed by reality, rather than our teams forcing a theoretical approach onto what we saw in the field, allowing us to realise value quickly.

Our approach, particularly in the discovery phase, needed to be hands-on. We did this through building and deploying a team of 11 technical resources across the globe to perform physical visits to the global factories. These resources identified all relevant instances and compiled this primary research into formalised reports. The report findings were then aggregated globally into a single repository, which produced a list of a total of 402 IT problems to solve.

To solve these problems, BITE then worked collaboratively with other teams in the business, from solution architecture through to information security and compliance, to identify mitigations for the findings. The mitigations were then deployed into the factories through a combination of the main IT program, working with local IT teams, and re-visiting the factories where needed.

The Impact

The BITE workstream mitigated around 400 instances of local IT issues and prevented significant potential production losses. The value delivered led our partnership to evolve, and we continued to support Hitachi across other areas of the business.

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Rory Farquharson

Rory Farquharson