Power Grid Corporation of India Limited: 2023 BEST Award Winner, #17
Founded almost 33 years ago, Power Grid Corporation of India continues to find ways to evolve and diversify its revenue streams to get the most out of its employees. Most recently, that has come in the form of a partnership with the International Institute of Information Technology Bangalore (IIITB) to roll out a customized, 15-month certification program on data science, artificial intelligence, and machine learning.
The new program trains 50 executives annually and helps promote an agile work culture and intelligent business decision making. Power Grid, tasked with transmitting bulk power across different states of India, estimates saving approximately $3.5 million because the company won't have to outsource to external vendors anymore.
"It is a proven fact that, in the digital age, if you outsource a critical core competency around any business, you may not only be vulnerable to cyber threats/attacks but also your vendors may outrun you in the long run," explains Pardeep Dalal, assistant manager of HR. "Therefore, Power Grid, in its business, prefers to groom in-house talent."
With an eye on the future, L&D has also identified and engaged 79 high performers and potential successors at the senior level as part of the Leadership and Succession Development program. Professors mentor employees on key themes, including what the organization will look like in 2030 and 2047, strategies for digital transformation, and opportunities for increasing nontransmission revenue.
"In the context of strengthening the core, the company focuses on skill building in critical areas like operating digital substations, remote asset management, apps on a smart metering network, real-time live data analytics on grid operations, and cybersecurity," says Dalal.
Many of the L&D initiatives center on enabling a future-ready workforce and increasing productivity. It's proven a highly rewarding endeavor for the organization, as evidenced by maintaining its network availability of 99.8 percent with a negligible rate of major equipment failures, a worldwide benchmark, Power Grid reports. Likewise, the company has reduced its average assembling time of a tower from five days to three, decreased its average bidding time from more than 12 weeks to less than 10 weeks, and cut its average bill-processing time for vendors from more than two weeks to less than a week through upgraded bill factory applications.
Another organization-wide solution involved L&D partnering with the company's information security department to design in-house e-certification courses on cybersecurity for all employees. The need comes from the increased likelihood that many companies face a cybersecurity attack, particularly because of Power Grid's potential vulnerability; the company operates all its HVAC substations remotely from one control station.
Due to L&D's diligence, the company now has every station certified on ISO 27001, the international standard for information security.
"I am confident that our L&D team, in partnership with other business verticals, shall continue to find many solutions to existing and future business challenges in order to give the company a sustainable market leadership globally," says V.K. Singh, director of personnel.
View the entire list of 2023 BEST Award winners.