By Matthew Lampe, CIO, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power
Challenges in technology to meet needs of the utility industry
A continuing challenge is the ability to adapt the applications to the increased demands for secure collaboration in a mobile world. Mobility demands to provide more and better information in the hands of employees and customers alike are increasing, and adapting applications to the variety of device types and operating environments is a difficult challenge. Increased use and support for HTML5 and adoption of portal frameworks to support application delivery to mobile platforms will help the enterprise.
The areas in the utility sector would've made job easier
Security is a constant challenge, both for the infrastructure and especially for applications. While tools continue to evolve to address the "last" challenge, building an enterprise security program sufficient to address the continually evolving threats and the myriad of vulnerabilities will remain a key source of anxiety.
A second area is analytics and the amount of data that is being generated for analysis. The promise of data analytics within the organization requires a combination of advances from the application providers, to help extract key data sets for analytics, and development of expertise in the data analytics toolset for realization of value.
Technology trends impacting the utility sector
One is the extent to which virtualization has extended to many technology areas, servers, storage, java machines, networking, etc. These advances continue to bring options to reduce cost, and improve performance and the efficiency of IT services. However, the complexity of virtual worlds talking to each other makes troubleshooting far more complicated.
A second trend, that is positive, is the continuing advances in the ability to monitor IT systems, including applications, and the integration between applications, to assist IT to observe, diagnose, and resolve issues in our increasingly complex web of applications that support business processes.