Innovation Workstream Lead 26 views

Job Expired
Position Innovation Workstream Lead – Technical
Reporting to Innovation Project Lead
Function Innovation Team – Strategy and Regulation
Location Newington House (London)
Reference Number 56426
Employment Period Fixed Term Contract (18 – 24 months)
Contract Type Personal Contract
CiP Level / Bonus 5%
Starting Salary   £40,466 – Plus benefits and bonus
Closing Date 26/02/2021



All applications will be reviewed after the closing date


We also offer :

Annual leave 25 days

Personal Pension Plan – Personal contribution rates of 4% or 5% (UK Power Networks will make a corresponding contribution of 8% or 10%)

Tenancy Loan Deposit scheme

Tax efficient benefits: cycle to work scheme

Season ticket loan

Occupational Health support

Switched On – scheme providing discount on hundreds of retailers products.

Supplier discounts, such as O2, EE, Vauxhall cars, Universal tyres

Discounted access to sports and social clubs

Employee Assistance Programme.

Job Purpose:


UK Power Networks is proud to be the most reliable, most innovative and lowest price electricity distribution group. We have been successful in winning around £90m of innovation funding over the last 8 years, with more bids in the pipeline.


The purpose of this role involves scoping, launching and running innovation projects and trials, or delivering major parts of our existing projects, and driving them through to implementation. You will be involved in cutting edge innovation, mainly funded by the Network Innovation Allowance (NIA) and Network Innovation Competition (NIC). This role will focus on the technical power system aspects of innovation projects.


Working within our dedicated and diverse team of 30 innovators, you will help UK Power Networks prepare for the transition to a low carbon future and a smart flexible energy system, maintain a reliable and cost effective electricity network and reduce the cost of connecting new customers.

Our current portfolio of innovation projects includes, just to name a few:

  • Constellation – a transformation project aiming to enable DNOs to revolutionise the existing management and control models of traditional electricity distribution;
  • Active Response – a revolutionary way of managing spare electricity network capacity by testing a responsive, automated electricity network that reconfigures itself constantly, moving spare capacity to where the demand is;
  • Powerful CB – first in the world demonstration of a fault current limiting circuit breaker that enables the connection of more distributed generation to electricity distribution networks; and
  • Optimise Prime – the world biggest commercial EV trial investigating how networks, technology providers, fleet and private hire vehicle operators can work together to accelerate the electrification of commercial vehicles.



Nature and Scope:

The energy industry is undergoing unprecedented change. We are moving away from a simple but carbon-intensive model of delivering electricity generated by large coal and gas-fired power stations, to a much more dynamic and complex network with large volumes of distributed energy resources (DERs) connected at distribution level. We are seeing the advent of producer/consumers (or ‘prosumers’) and local energy markets. The rise of electric vehicles (EVs), renewable energy, storage and, in time, decarbonisation of heating are all contributing to the low carbon and better air quality agendas being promoted by government at all levels.

These fundamental changes are challenging both how we maintain and operate our network today, as well as creating opportunities for us to do so more efficiently in the future. We are committed to playing a key facilitation role in the UK’s low carbon economy and in order to support the transition to a decarbonised and more de-centralised electricity system, our role has to evolve.

Innovation is at the forefront of this revolution. By developing new ideas, fresh approaches and better processes using the network as a living testbed, Innovation is playing a crucial role not only in making our network safer, more reliable and more efficient, but also in developing technical and commercial solutions that support the uptake of EVs and low carbon technologies and address the needs of tomorrow’s customers.


The role of Workstream Leads is to contribute to the development and delivery of a diverse innovation project portfolio which aligns with UK Power Networks’ Innovation strategy and prepares the network for the low carbon transition. Though they will mainly be attached to one of our NIC flagship projects and lead the delivery of the associated technical workstreams.


They also take a weight of responsibility to ensure that the business is prepared to implement the necessary changes to adopt successful innovation. They therefore need to demonstrate a track record in recognising and tackling both technical and non-technical issues associated with the acceptance of new technology. They will work closely with colleagues in order to establish new standards, engineering instructions, training materials etc. necessary to provide the solution as a ‘finished package’ to the business.


Workstream Leads require project management skills appropriate to managing small sub-contracted studies through to significant trials involving staff safety, new product approval, design approval, procurement and scheduling issues. The role can accommodate individuals who are seeking to make technical project management their career, as well as those for whom becoming a recognised subject matter expert is their goal.




  • Deliver major parts of large flagship projects reporting to the Innovation Project Lead and/or deliver innovation projects as a project manager with a portfolio reaching up to £5m per annum;
  • Manage technology providers to ensure software is delivered to time, scope and cost;
  • Responsible for detailing functional and non-functional requirements based on workshops with senior stakeholder across UK Power Networks;
  • Support in creating business impact assessments for new software solutions;
  • Ensure innovation software design aligns with wider UK Power Networks software strategy;
  • Create, agree and oversee defect management frameworks with suppliers;
  • Responsible for defining software testing and use training strategies;
  • Responsible for detailing the strategies that allow trial innovation projects to transition to business as usual;
  • Understand and articulate robust challenges to existing solutions and support the development of innovative processes to improve problem-solving capabilities. Jointly accountable for achievement of collaborative efficiency targets across relevant programmes and projects, ensuring that a lower cost design and installation approach is developed;
  • Represent the department within external working groups, meetings, events and conferences;
  • Ensure that all appropriate regulatory, statutory and company standards are met;
  • Coach junior staff;
  • Responsible for safety of staff by ensuring necessary training has been undertaken and use of staff with company-approved competencies.



Knowledge, Skills, Qualifications and Experience:




  • Batchelor’s degree or equivalent, ideally computer science, engineering or project management
  • A strong understanding of software development life cycles;
  • Experience in managing software suppliers throughout a project lifecycle;
  • A quick learner who can understand complex ideas and convey these to non-technical audiences in a clear and concise manner;




  • Track record in project management within well-defined and structured frameworks;
  • Understanding of operational infrastructure environments, including enterprise architecture requirements for smart grids;
  • Experience in delivering cloud computing solutions;
  • Project management qualification;
  • Basic understanding of electrical power systems and control systems;
  • Basic understanding of network operator SCADA/DMS/OMS/DERMS systems;
  • Strong interpersonal skills and an ability to communicate clearly and confidently with internal and external stakeholders at all levels of seniority;
  • Excellent written communication skills, with an evidenced ability to write clearly, concisely, and effectively for both technical and non-technical audiences;
  • Resilient personality, enthusiastic, and able to work well as part of a highly-focused team; and
  • Excellent self-organisation and self-motivation skills; able to work on own initiative with minimal supervision, under pressure and to hard deadlines, with a focus on delivering outputs.
  • Familiarity with cost-benefit analysis;
  • Experience in delivery of projects with adherence to technical specifications and standards;
  • Familiarity with contractual issues (both monitoring adherence to an existing contract and managing issues at project inception through contract);
  • Experience of change control/management and implementing new ways of working;
  • Strong allegiance to R&D and innovation.


Key Competencies:


  • Ability to pro-actively manage workload;
  • Strong interpersonal skills and ability to communicate clearly and confidently at all levels of the organisation and with external customers (both in oral or written form);
  • Self-directed in their personal development;
  • Goal-orientated;
  • Ability to make correct business decisions, influence and persuade others as required;
  • Information Seeking;
  • Planning, organisation and time management.


Health & Safety Responsibilities

Managers and supervisors carry both legal and company responsibilities for ensuring the health and safety of their employees, those under their control and those who might be affected by the work undertaken, i.e. public, visitors and employees of other organisations. This includes briefing individuals working for them and ensuring there is the necessary understanding, competence and application of requirements to work safely and without harming the environment.

Employees will ensure they fully understand the health and safety risks involved in their work activities and their responsibility to apply the controls needed to manage those risks to acceptable levels. Similarly where work activities can have an adverse impact upon the environment, and particularly where there are legal requirements, employees will understand those impacts and the controls they must ensure are applied.

Employees need to be aware that for some craft and operational roles that work at height, or use fall arrest devices, there is an upper weight limit of 116Kg due to maximum safe working load of the safety equipment that is used.

If in doubt ask!


We are committed to equal employment opportunity regardless of race, color, ancestry, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, age, citizenship, marital status, disability, gender, gender identity or expression, or veteran status. We are proud to be an equal opportunity workplace.

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