Infrastructure to Process Innovation: How EKEDC is Building a World-Class Utility Company

Building a world-class utility company could be a herculean task, demanding a consistent commitment to sustained optimal performance. This is more so when dealing with an operating environment and industry fraught with multiple challenges. The Eko Electricity Distribution Company (EKEDC) is defying the odds, systematically creating a multi-pronged model of growth that is both sustainable and replicable.

Through its strategic growth model of simultaneous development of hard and soft infrastructure, EKEDC has continued to plot an upward mobility trajectory in Nigeria’s energy sector. Its multi-faceted growth model includes timely acquisition and delivery of hard infrastructure, process innovation, technology integration, top-tier talent acquisition and retention, strategic customer and community engagement, agile change management, and structured social intervention.

Over the past one year, EKEDC has recorded unprecedented levels of success across its performance metrics, a development that followed the appointment of Dr Tinuade Sanda as its MD/CEO, the first female to hold the top position in the company’s history. The focus of her leadership on people-centred resilient growth has led to remarkable changes.

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As a firm believer in the people as the engine of growth, EKEDC has prioritized staff welfare, providing competitive remuneration and a conducive working environment. The following staff-incentivization efforts were made over the past one year:

● 25%increase in staff salary across board to account for Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA)
● 437 new lines workers hired to ease district work, 602 staff hired in total so far
● Conclusion of 2020 and 2021 Performance Appraisal Process leading to: 629 staff promoted; 246 staff receiving step increase; 24 staff receiving step alignment; 280 staff receiving one-off bonus; 60 staff placed on PIP


EKEDC staff

● Introduction of Monthly Incentives for improved Commercial & Technical Performance to boost morale and encourage increased productivity
● Approving the acquisition of 160 new vehicles to ease operations and improve productivity and efficiency
● 100% drop in staff fatality and 20% drop in staff Injuries. Target is 0 cases for next year
● PPEs made available for kitting of technical staff (2,049 Boots; 1,698 Coveralls and 1,475 Gloves; 1,333 Hard Hats)
● Acquisition of 497 Ladders (347 LT ladders and 150 HT ladders)
● Facilitated the Elevator (Lift – 4nos) recertification by Lagos State Safety Commission
● Executive Management Tour of all Districts to gain first-hand experience on challenges being faced and plans to resolve them
● Launch of the first-ever staff awards ceremony— ACE Awards— to reward staff for their performance over the course of the year
● Launch of the first-ever staff town hall to get direct and unfiltered feedback and insights from staff.

These internal capacity development efforts have also been matched by external capacity development efforts. The provision of hard infrastructure to enhance service delivery has also been a defining feature of EKEDC’s growth. Some notable achievements in this regard are as follows:

● Procurement of 150 Distribution transformers
● Replacement of 53 failed distribution transformers
● Commissioning of Abraham Adesanya 11kV feeder to relieve overloaded Ogombo 11kV feeder
● Commissioning of 3No new 11kV feeders
● Commissioning of 1No new 33kV feeders
● Rehabilitation of 34No 11kV feeders for reliability
● Rehabilitation of 3No 33kV feeders for reliability
● Complete rearrangement of switchgears at Maroko injection substation and diversion of Lekki-Oniru 33kV feeder to Lekki injection substation
● Rehabilitation of 226No submerged distribution substations
● Construction of Akangba-NRC dual overhead lines for power stability to Ebute-Metta and Yaba axes
● Commissioning of 25No 500kVA 11/0.415kV and 29No 500kVA 33/0.415kV relief distribution substations
● Procurement of 40No 11kV SF6 RMUs (Ring Main Units) for replacement of obsolete ones in the network
● Replacement of 12 sets of 11kV panels across 7 injection substations
● Procurement of meters seals and test terminal blocks

It has been projects after projects, installation after installation, commissioning after commissioning; and the results have been pouring in. Over the past one year alone, EKEDC has been able to achieve the following:

● Reduce reportable safety incidents by 50% (July – September 2021(67) vs July – September 2022 (25))
● Lowest-ever ATC&C loss of 15.69% for the month of July, 2022
● Initiation of round-the-clock technical shifts for Island and Lekki Districts
● Commencement of evacuation of 100MW from NDPHC through bilateral arrangement with effect from 1st August 2022, improving reliability of power supply to customers
● Achievement of 24hr fault-clearing turnaround time
● Successful relaunch of the Meter Asset Provider (MAP) Scheme at Festac district, and subsequently across the network. Customers can now apply and get their meters installed within 72 hours
● Successful recertification of ISO-OHM & MS45001:2018
● Monitoring of all existing Feeders through Statistical Meters.

It has not all been about staff performance, contractual service delivery and commercial gains. As a socially responsible company, EKEDC has been consistently impacting society through its 5-pillar CSR plan: Environment & Safety, Health & Wellness, Education & Capacity Building, Technology, Sports & Entrepreneurship.

Under these pillars, projects have been implemented which have impacted individuals, institutions and communities. Schools and school children have received learning resources, health centres and the health-challenged have received treatment support, organizers of sporting events and sporting teams have received support, while safety, environment and technology-advancing initiatives have been launched or backed. EKEDC has been much more than profit; it has been a model of social responsibility.

Speaking on its journey so far and its ambitions going forward, Dr. Sanda summed it up this way: “We have braved great odds on our way here, demonstrating our relentless commitment to success. We are opposed to failure in all its forms. We are opposed to mediocrity. We are opposed to complacency. This disposition is our launchpad into a future of sustainable success as a world-class utility company”.

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