In today’s world, it’s hard to operate a power plant without the benefit of information technology (IT) systems. Staff tasked with managing these systems can take a beating when the tools don’t work as advertised. Here’s how one IT department focused on building and sustaining cross-functional relationships, culminating in a win-win for the department and the company as a whole.
The South Texas Project Electric Generating Station (STP), located about 90 miles southwest of Houston, Texas, is one of the nation’s largest nuclear generating facilities. STP, however, is not immune to depressed power market conditions. Low natural gas prices, renewable power sources, and increased regulation, among other market constraints, continue to challenge baseload generation in Texas and across the nation.
To help address these challenges, STP’s Information Technology (IT) department has contributed innovative strategies, which have netted positive results for the company. Over the past three years, the IT department has been successful in reducing its operating budget by more than 10% while delivering value to the company through innovative solutions and improved employee morale.
Good Information Technology Requires Teamwork
IT team members feel as though they are a part of something much larger than themselves. A key portion of the department’s mission statement says it all: “a common purpose is shared with the station and positive, lasting relationships are fostered.” This may not seem like the typical IT mission, but building and maintaining relationships with people is at the heart of what STP’s IT department does. No matter how good the technological rollout, no matter how innovative, the team believes that if it does not maintain solid relationships with internal and external customers and stakeholders, it will fail.