Big data has been a buzzword for several years now, but data analytics has real opportunities in the energy industry. For someone looking to make an impact in the job market, data analytics skills can really be what employers are looking for to bring more efficiency and better decision making to plants across the country.
Putting data to use
The energy industry has been collecting vast amounts of data (big data) for years now, but not every plant has been able to put that information to good use. Data analytics can have a vast impact on the efficiency of a power plant, including how power is generated, how utilities are managed, and how the energy is valued. The regular processing of energy trends and information produced on a minute by minute basis across the country is standard practice. However, this data cannot be analyzed and understood with the simple standard database software programs. It requires more innovative techniques, and of course skilled professionals who can sift through the information provided by supervisory control and data acquisition systems (known as SCADA systems), then translate that information into actionable insights.
Data is currently being used to enhance the customer experience, to maximize profits, and improve efficiencies. Smart meters, synchrophasors , and real-time weather information systems are all helpful in gathering data, making decisions, and improving reliability. Big data also allows investors to understand the impact of weather, customer response, fuel price volatility, capital investment cycles, and other factors to influence investment decisions. The true value of big data is frankly too big to fully understand because as more and more data becomes available, it will be those businesses and industries who are capable of harnessing that information and making sense of it who will reap the benefits and inevitably come out ahead of the competition.
Overall, data analytics empower people to better use resources and time to solve the root causes of problems. Every business is operating with limited resources and time-sensitive goals. That’s why decision making needs to be driven by actual data with the future in mind. Data analytics provides the right people with information that can be used for creative problem solving, rather than collecting information manually or relying on anecdotal and tribal knowledge. Employers in the energy industry are actively seeking the right people in the job market to help them fill that gap.
Big Data and You
As a candidate in the energy industry, some basic knowledge of how big data is used and valued in the field will take you a long way toward a more successful career. From a basic understanding of the value of big data and its uses, to an in-depth knowledge of its working processes and programs, you can only benefit from an education in big data within the energy field. Considering that the market trend will continue toward further development of this tool, it’s a great idea to familiarize yourself with the various programs and utilizations of big data in the energy market.