Frazer-Nash prototype software tool helping Cadent Gas safeguard vulnerable customers

Frazer-Nash has developed a prototype interactive software tool to help Cadent Gas safeguard its customers during gas outages.

Client: Cadent Gas

The Challenge

Interruptions to customer gas supplies are often unavoidable and can sometimes be life threatening. During these interruptions, gas networks have a responsibility to safeguard customers, especially those with vulnerabilities. First-call operatives visit customers with vulnerabilities during outages, providing temporary welfare products that are best suited to their needs.

Operator of the largest natural gas distribution network in the UK, Cadent Gas, is seeking to transform its current safeguarding process, which relies on manual interventions, and to provide its engineers with an informed, evidence-based digital solution. Frazer-Nash has developed a prototype interactive software tool to help Cadent Gas safeguard its customers during gas outages.

The solution

The software application uses integrated data and modelling to produce a bespoke informed list of recommended safeguarding products and services for customers whose gas supply is disrupted. With an intuitive and easy to use interface, the user can swiftly navigate the app, view and update the customer’s information, and understand why each recommendation is being made to address an individual customer’s specific needs.

Cloud-hosted, the app will be accessible to front-line engineers through a handheld device, and will be available for use on a wide-scale by 2,000 engineers simultaneously. The tool has also been created to allow for further capability developments, enabling Cadent to add welfare products and services to the model as they are established. This will support Cadent in its strategy to personalise its welfare offering to ensure safeguarding for mental health and social care needs, as well as physical health.

Security and data protection was of the highest priority throughout the tool’s development. Frazer-Nash worked with Cadent to ensure that sensitive data was handled in accordance with GDPR and other security standards, and the application’s cyber security has been assessed to ensure that it is safe for the storage and use of secure customer information.

The outcome

Frazer-Nash used an Agile project management process in the development of this application, including continuous engagement from Cadent stakeholders to maximise collaboration time. Frazer-Nash also worked with Cadent to conduct a month-long field trial, to further ensure that the digital safeguarding solution that Cadent wanted was the solution that we delivered.

The solution has been highly praised by the client: both by its business innovation teams, and by the first-call operatives in the field. Future phases to develop the software’s safeguarding capability further and to integrate the app into Cadent’s ‘business-as-usual’ toolset are already being discussed.
The application will support on-call engineers, helping them to provide a valuable community service by safeguarding vulnerable customers.