In a move that may bring about transparency in its operations, plug in pilferages and even improve the speed of decision-making, the UP Power Corporation Limited (UPPCL) has decided to adopt the hi-tech enterprise resource planning (ERP) system.
The National Thermal Power Corporation Limited (NTPC), which has already introduced ERP at all its locations, power plants and sub-stations with excellent results, will help the UPPCL put the new system in place.
The NTPC gave its nod after UPPCL officials had a meeting with its management in New Delhi a few days ago.
“The NTPC has agreed to provide consultancy to the UPPCL. We would soon float tenders inviting private companies to install their ERP software,” said a senior UPPCL official, who did not wish to be identified.
ERP is a software package that helps in establishing better control over a host of business activities such as productivity, sales, inventory management and quality management across the organisational structure.
Once the ERP is implemented, all UPPCL functions would be computerised and automated, minimising manual operations, including placing purchase and procurement orders, maintaining stocks of transformers and other electricity goods, making payments to suppliers and contractors and also giving increment to employees.
“Besides, consumers would be able to pay their bills, book new power connection and lodge complaints online,” the official claimed.
The ERP is expected to help UPPCL achieve improved exchange of information, productivity and reduction of costs, better data consistency, knowledge sharing and unification of planning and budgeting processes.
“Real-time tracking of key project activities, reduction in time to procure material, centralised commercial billing functions and real time visibility into cash inflows from customers, are some of the benefits that the ERP will come with,” he pointed out.
The ERP, he added, would also provide greater satisfaction to employees because they would be able to track the movement of files related to their service matters.
“The system would curtail corruption in a big way because officials and clerks would no longer be able to sit on files for their vested interest. The payment to suppliers and contractors would automatically get transferred to their bank accounts eliminating the scope of exchange of commissions,” he said.
The ERP will later be integrated with the ongoing Revised Accelerated Power Development and Reform Programme (R-APDRP), part one of which seeks to create a strong IT backbone in the power sector in the targeted cities.
UPPCL PLANS CUSTOMER MEETS
The UPPCL management is also planning to hold customer meets in various districts to have a direct interface with power consumers and get feedback from them. “We are going to issue orders asking superintending engineers to hold regular customer meets at least once a week,” a senior official told Hindustan Times.