Without the State of Emergency provoked by the pandemic “it would have taken one generation to bring this many people to this technological level and it would have implied a massive investment in training” stated José Ferrari Careto, Director of Digital Global Unit of EDP. Careto refers to the adaptation by million of people to smart-working in record time and the multiple technological tools for video-conferences or remote education.
That is why Ferrari Careto believes that we “must look at the positive elements brought by the phase we are going through, besides all the negative aspects that this pandemic is bringing to the life of people and to the economy”. In the first place, he points out “some of the tabus regarding smart-working where broken, being now clear that smart-working can work and that what before was seen as an exception, now it’s the new normal, meaning that the tabu was surpassed”.
On the other hand, “there is a large part of the population that did a total immersion in technology, in an accelerated regime of training that will leave a very positive mark for the future of students, workers and teachers”
EDP anticipated the transition
A reality that the EDP Group anticipated a few years when it activated its program of digital transformation between November 2017 and May 2018, culminating in a new area inside the group that connects information technologies (IT) to the digital transition. “Far before this covid-19 crisis video-conferences where common between the group and we invested in training” explaines Ferrari Careto. “Now, the rhythm was accelerated, for obvious reasons, but its now new to us”.
The advantages of using this type of technological tools are easy to understand in a group with about 12 thousand collaborators that acts in 14 different places. And already worked to save in transferring teams inside and outside the country.
Therefore, and answering the challenge of the first session of the Portugal Mobi Summit, “is the new mobility digital?”, Ferrari Careto doesn’t hesitate in agreeing, in that “mobility is now virtualized through the digital”.
About EDP in particular, he guarantees that, in this moment, the company “it’s strongly digital, in technology, in processes and in people”. But, according the evaluation of IDC and the Catholic University, the company finds itself in the forefront compared with its European counterparts.
And that can be measured in productivity. Even if more than 70% of the company employees are in a smart-working mode, and taking into account its advantages and disadvantages, Ferrari Careto doesn’t hesitate in identifying increase in productivity in some areas, referring, for example that “meetings through video-conference are now much more focused, without delays, or extended by secondary conversations”.
Also for clients, the digitalization was already happening, with electronic invoices, smart electricity meters, communication of readings, verifying that in these last months, customers started using more the tools that where already available.
In the forefront of electric mobility clients, the advances in digitalization where also noted, for example in the EVX app, created to simulate the experience of driving an electric vehicle, registering possible savings in terms of gas, CO2 emissions and autonomy indicators. Or also in the personalized solutions for electric vehicle charging in private condos, that have been developing inside the group.