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Aligning ENGIE’s Business Units with its Analytics Vision: Thierry Grima

Thierry Grima, Group Chief Analytics Officer at ENGIE, reveals how he’s driving engagement with the company’s analytics strategy on the Business of Data podcast

Global electricity utility company ENGIE is transforming in more ways than one. Not only is it transitioning toward an operating model built on renewable energy sources, it’s reimagining its business practices for the age of data and analytics.

In this week’s Business of Data podcast episode, ENGIE Group Chief Analytics Officer Thierry Grima shares his experiences of leading the company on this journey and galvanizing staff around his analytics vision.

“We established a CDO community with 30+ members and we help them to provide data sources,” he says. “What we are here for, for me, is really to bring the ‘glue’ that will help people to connect together and see value in those connections to IT.”

For Grima, building awareness of what ENGIE is doing with data and how staff can use it to drive value for their own business units is an integral part of a Chief Analytics Officer’s role.

Driving Change with Gamification and eLearning

“Data is the new ‘sexy’, and it’s really important for us to ensure that our people know that, and they can actually play their role,” says Grima. “They all have to play a role.”

One of the most attention-grabbing ways ENGIE is driving awareness of its analytics strategy is through the creation of a ‘data game’.

The company created a mobile app that allowed people to challenge their colleagues to ‘duels’ where they answered questions about the company’s data and analytics initiatives. Winners were awarded points and competed for prizes on a company-wide leaderboard.

“Over three weeks we played something like 200,000 games,” Grima recalls. “It was really interesting to see how people were playing and gain some understanding of what ENGIE does with its data and how it helps to bring value to reduce cost, to find new revenue streams.”

Alongside the ‘data game’ the company is also delivering online training courses for staff across the organization to improve their data literacy levels. Grima says engagement with these courses has been particularly good throughout the pandemic.

Creating a Repository for Analytics Use Cases

Alongside working to raise awareness of what ENGIE’s staff can do with data, Grima’s team has created a ‘data marketplace’ to act as a central repository for the company’s analytics use cases.

“What you can find there is quite simple,” he says. “You find the definition of the program itself. So, what do we do? Why are we here? And what are the different parts that we cover from a strategy and organization standpoint, but also from a technology or data science standpoint?”

“We also gather all the use cases depending on their state in the lifecycle; so, the development state they are in,” he adds. “At the moment we have more than 300 use cases in this repository.”

“We share the use cases so that everyone knows exactly what other [staff are doing],” he continues. “But also, if they want to understand something, they [will] know exactly where it’s been developed already or anything that comes a bit close to what they want to build.”

Through breaking down the silos between ENGIE’s different business units in this way, Grima hopes to catalyze greater analytics innovation across the organization. His strategy is to couple this will his team’s broader data literacy and awareness initiatives to drive analytics adoption across the group.

Key Takeaways

  • Analytics leadership is about communication. Data-focused executives must inspire their colleagues to embrace change
  • Gamifying data literacy can drive awareness. Look for ways to get staff members engaging with your analytics strategy
  • Create a central repository for analytics project. Make it as easy as possible for staff to innovate with data and analytics