Recently, I’ve been involved in a ground-breaking project looking at the impact of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the energy management sector. Having worked in the industry for 12 years, leading many groups of energy professionals, I approached the project with some degree of nervousness.
AI is ‘intelligence demonstrated by machines rather than us human beings’, often called synthetic intelligence and sparks memories of the Terminator movie franchise. Am I creating Skynet and the eventual doom for my energy management colleagues?
Data paralysis and insightful intelligence
My projects focus is on exploiting energy data better. Having been an Energy Manager managing 100’s of meter points, the need to manage the data flows has been a constant burden. Too much time is invested in data analysis over utilising the information gained. Even when you have the information, it’s often hard to transpose unto simple clear actions for the end user. Many energy monitoring systems reply to this by delving deeper into the energy data or seeking more data (meter) feeds resulting in more exception reports but minimal insight improvements.
AI brings in a new contributor in the data process – the End User. The End User acts as a validator of insight, helping the AI system to learn and recall every time an action is created and implemented. AI’s a huge memory bank of historic data feeds aligned with a simple process to generate actions and get feedback. AI releases the Energy Manager to focus on instigating actions breaking away from the drudgery of data analysis. AI is limited and controlled, sorry Arnie you can’t think for yourself, but is intelligent through using its vast memory bank of previous actions.
Energy Managements dead – Long live Energy Leaders
The Luddite Fallacy suggests that technology does not lead to higher overall unemployment. New technology does not destroy jobs but does change the composition of the economy. So, if you’re an Energy Manager or better described as Data Manager, set in your ways to focus on analysis and data then watch your back. For those keen to survive and thrive its time to exploit your better valued talents and skills.
Energy Leaders are crucial to sustain the low carbon message within your organisation engaging the leadership and setting the strategy. Energy Leaders focus on the bigger picture over the smaller details. This change may feel uncomfortable but to quote Nagavara Murthy ‘Growth is painful, change is painful, but nothing is as painful as staying stuck where you do not belong’.
The question you need to ask yourself is – ‘Are you adapting or set for Termination?’
For more information contact Haydn through his LinkedIn account.
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