Stakeholder Feedback Drove Several Improvements Last Year

PJM listened, learned and, more importantly, took action in 2016 on stakeholder feedback based on the last survey. PJM reported the year-end results of the action plans at the Members Committee Webinar on Monday.

“We’re very proud of the accomplishments that were completed on these plans throughout last year,” said Rebecca Carroll, manager of the Knowledge Management Center. “We plan to build on these improvements as we look for more ways to provide value to our members.”

Carroll said some of the enhancements will continue in 2017, while a newly revamped member survey is being developed for use this summer. The new survey is being designed to stimulate greater stakeholder response.  Among the improvements PJM is working on is reducing the number of questions and the amount of time to complete the survey. PJM will share more information about the survey changes in the upcoming months.

The 2016 Survey Action plans looked at improvements to how PJM regards the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s Order 1000, developed a Tech Change Forum to improve coordination of information technology changes, implemented transmission outage communication timeline changes, improved the ease of use of PJM’s website and manuals, evolved the stakeholder process training and enhanced member support.

Here are some of the highlights of last year’s progress:

FERC Order 1000

Feedback from the survey indicated that there were several process gaps as part of the FERC Order 1000 project. To address these gaps, PJM implemented a voltage threshold for the proposal window process, incorporated a construction phase into the process and developed market efficiency guidelines. PJM also conducted several lessons learned sessions where PJM and stakeholders vetted decisional process language for market efficiency projects. Language was developed to exclude substation equipment from Order 1000. PJM also created an initial draft version of Manual 14F and began coordination of the new manual development with PJM stakeholders; this will continue in 2017.

Transmission Outage Communications Timeliness

PJM’s goal was to address feedback about providing more transparency and rules/guidelines regarding transmission outages, specifically when outages are canceled, delayed or extended. PJM developed and implemented new outage return-time metrics as well as new language for Manual 3: Transmission Operations, which became effective Dec. 1, 2016.

Ease of Doing Business

Improving the navigation on and making the Manuals more user-friendly have been two big areas of focus to make it easier to do business with PJM. PJM implemented the Library section on to replace Documents and continues to introduce improvements to enhance the user experience.

Stakeholder Process

Stakeholders indicated at the Stakeholder Process Forum that the stakeholder process could be improved by bolstering the discussion facilitation to drive toward consensus-building. PJM developed a three-module Advanced Facilitation program with this feedback in mind and trained its first cohort of PJM facilitators last year. More training for PJM facilitators will be offered in 2017.

Member Support

PJM focused on improving the quality, accuracy and timeliness of responses to members’ questions and issues. PJM established guidelines and best practices to respond to member questions, consolidated inbound email groups and hotlines to streamline contacting PJM and expanded the functionality available in the Member Community. In addition, PJM developed 140 new knowledge articles for a total of 362 altogether, addressing frequently asked questions or emerging issues raised by stakeholders.

Ease of Use of PJM Tools

PJM set out to improve stakeholders’ satisfaction with PJM tools and examine methods to gain more input from members on tool development. The Tech Change Forum launched last year as a way to address these concerns.  On a monthly basis, the Tech Change Forum meets to increase transparency into PJM’s long-term IT project plans, engage stakeholders and communicate tool-related changes prior to PJM implementing them.