Companies, which trade energy and commodities, spend large sums of money on software systems and other technology services to support their trading and risk management – as well as the myriad personnel whose primary job is to look after these systems and services. Some of these organizations believe that all this technology gives them a competitive advantage. However, the great majority of them see it as a necessary evil – just the cost of doing business, but nothing that will give you an edge over their competition.
At a conference we attended couple of years ago (pre-pandemic, in person!), there was a panel on ETRM and one of the panelists was head of technology for a major European energy business. When asked if ETRM provides a competitive advantage, he answered: “Not really: an ETRM cannot give you a competitive advantage. But, certainly a bad one can cause you to go out of business.”
One obvious reason behind this very grim outlook is that most of the ETRM/CTRM software systems are very old. The vast majority of energy/commodity firms are using systems that are built on 15- to 30-year-old technology. Just as a point of reference, that means your ETRM/CTRM was likely built sometime between Netscape Navigator’s introduction and when Blackberry was the leading “smartphone” in the market.
Even if we could go back in time to resurrect these companies and products, we cannot think of anyone who would be a happy and satisfied user of either of these. They were very good products at that point in time, but technology evolves rapidly and user expectations move in lockstep with that pace.
A related and an even more important reason why ETRM/CTRM systems get a bad reputation is that there is big delay between a change in the energy and commodity markets and when you can have something in your ETRM/CTRM which addresses that change. First you have to wait for your ETRM vendor to build the capability in the next version of their software and when that version is released, you have to embark on an expensive, time consuming and risky upgrade project.
Energy and commodity markets are changing constantly. Hence, energy and commodity businesses need to constantly adapt. They can only do this if their technology allows them the required flexibility and agility.
The CTRM-as-a-Service platform utilizes a microservices based architecture to enable modular deployment for point solutions, ready to scale with your business requirements. At the same time, it has the breadth and depth of the functionality and the robustness required to serve as an enterprise-wide, end-to-end CTRM solution for large, global companies with complex business problems.
CTRMCloud offers CTRM as a service, allowing for data to be collected, analyzed and reported in near real time from all areas of the business. Contact us to learn more.