March 16, 2020

Compliance & COVID-19: Where To Draw The Line

by PowerHub Editor

The first case of the novel coronavirus was reported on December 31st, 2019. Since then, most of us have been going about our daily routines as usual – manage, manage, contract & comply (along with multiple, 15-second hand washing routines…).

However, the recent World Health Organization (WHO) declaration of COVID- 19 as a global pandemic made our dear asset managers drop everything and make a mad dash for that pile of hefty renewable energy compliance contracts.

We feel you. One look at the latest Google Trends and you’ll see some of the most searched questions for Coronavirus – how to prepare for it, taking top spot. For asset managers, however; this preparation is way more than simply stocking up on Kleenex, Purell, family-favorite snacks and calling dibs on the most comfortable nook to work from home.

For asset managers, this declaration may mean a complete overhaul of asset maintenance schedules, unplanned disruptions, compliance obstructions, and a long list of difficult questions. After all, nobody ever wrote a playbook on managing obligations through a pandemic, right?  

What Does Compliance Look Like In A Pandemic?

But here’s the thing. As a manager, a communicator and the leader of the pack, it is your duty to look out for your assets and your people. Meaning, you must find the right balance between compliance management and making sure your teams are not exposed to undue danger.

Point being, now is the time to use your soft skills. Get in touch with officials in the localities where your renewable energy assets are located. Find out if any cases have been reported. Contact your maintenance staff; have they experienced any symptoms? Do they feel comfortable carrying out the scheduled repairs onsite or would they prefer to delay these visits?

Next, take a closer look at asset performance and classify maintenance by priority or urgency. If a visit cannot be delayed, do your due diligence to take preventive measures as much as possible. Perhaps, group your people into teams instead of sending them out all at once, you know the old-school divide and conquer?

Nonetheless, despite all this planning – as responsible members of the society – you must be prepared to mitigate through missed timelines. It may cost you time. It may means missed opportunity in the short run. But erring on the side of caution, following official guidelines and taking a roll-up-your-sleeves approach will be a crucial step in containing this global pandemic.

Most of all? Let’s take this time to make a commitment to evolve and learn. Instances such as these are great at pointing out inefficiencies in our processes, and the solutions that may help streamline them better. Perhaps, a leap towards digitization? Reviewing your compliance management? Or simply thinking about investing in renewable asset insurance.

Whatever it may be, lets learn and make a commitment to come out better and stronger for life’s next curveball – after all, isn’t that what a commitment to renewables truly stands for?

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