Performance Enhancement

A commodity trading firm wanted to maximize the efficiency of its gas trading operations. However, ensuring seamless coordination between Payment Date adjustments and nomination volumes, while avoiding disruptions like exposure drop-offs, presents a complex operational challenge. This necessitates innovative solutions to streamline processes, enhance accuracy, and align financial settlement with operational realities for sustained success in gas trading.

On Value Creed’s suggestion the company successfully implemented gas trading solution, integrating Physical and Financial Legs, to manage long-term gas supply contracts effectively in Endur. The solution addresses Payment Date dynamics, influencing both financial settlement and Physical Leg operations.

KEY RESULTS

90%

Efficiency Improvement from reduced manual efforts

~$1.5 million

Minimized Exposure Drop offs  for a month

90%

Timely Decision-Making with reduced discrepancies

90%

Operational efficiency and reduced disruptions

A Systematic Approach to Project Success

To address crucial transformation requirements, Value Creed implemented the following strategic solutions:

Implement Endur AutoMatch Reconciliation: Introducing an automated reconciliation process to validate deals post-nomination efficiently.

Enhance Validity Filtering: Utilizing advanced algorithms to filter valid scenarios and prevent unnecessary flags for 0 volume nominations.

Enable Multi-Step Validation: Leveraging Endur modules we incorporate multiple validation steps to identify and address discrepancies promptly.

Initiate Contract Amendments: Swiftly amending contracts to synchronize Payment Dates with Delivery Dates, mitigating the risk of premature Physical Leg drop-offs.

Facilitate Ongoing Monitoring: Encouraging proactive monitoring by Operators and the Risk Team to assess and mitigate risks associated with exposure dropoffs.

Value Creed Services Mobilized:

Expertise on Demand

Unlock operational effectiveness and elevate the efficiency and reliability of your database through Value Creed’s services. Optimize performance with fast and accurate data extraction, reconciliation, calculation, and reporting.

Key Takeaways

With a comprehensive approach, Value Creed tackles gas trading challenges by assessing and implementing solutions. By harnessing Endur tools like AutoMatch reconciliation and advanced algorithms, we drive measurable improvements, ensuring operational efficiency, minimizing risks, and delivering reliable results. Opting for Value Creed guarantees a strategic approach to optimizing gas trading operations.

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Performance Enhancement

A North American midstream producer sought to enhance the performance of their Endur ETRM system. Their primary goal was to streamline the Order to Cash Process, reducing turnaround times, and ensuring efficient operations across deal lifecycle stages, scheduling, and accounting interfaces.

While the client’s Endur ETRM landscape exhibited robust functionality, there were opportunities for improvement, particularly during peak periods like month ends and times of high utilization with numerous user logins. Moreover, the system experienced some challenges in managing increased interfacing throughput, which affected overall operational effectiveness. To address these opportunities, Value Creed proposed leveraging performance engineering principles to systematically optimize the application-level performance metrics of the Endur ETRM system, aligning it more closely with the client’s evolving needs.

KEY RESULTS

~90%

Production Outage Reduction

3 Months

Month-End Stability Achievement

~60%

Database Peak Load Reduction

~70%

Remediation of Month-End Critical Path

A Systematic Approach to Project Success

Operational Impacts: Client business teams encountered Database deadlocks and system slowness during peak usage, including high user logins, led to severe delays in the Order to Cash Process, potentially impacting revenue by $1.5 million monthly.

Two-Phased Approach: Value Creed’s Performance Engineering program for the client followed a two-phased approach: Assessment and Implementation.

Assessment Phase: Workshops were conducted with business teams and SMEs for a comprehensive understanding of processes, pain points, and technical challenges. Critical paths were identified, and Product Backlogs (PBIs) were created to address performance issues and outline strategic improvements.

Implementation Phase: Prioritized PBIs were based on criticality and business value, emphasizing two types: Enabler PBIs for implementing instrumentation with Azure Application Insights, and Performance fix PBIs addressing critical paths within the system.

Azure Application Insights: Facilitated performance tracking with application dashboards, availability view, alerts, logs, and user/session/event tracking.

Performance Enhancements: included code and SQL optimizations, business process improvements, and technical changes.

Post-implementation: Improvements were measured using Azure Dashboards against application logs, ensuring tangible performance gains.

Value Creed Services Mobilized:

Expertise on Demand

Unlock operational effectiveness and elevate the efficiency and reliability of your database through Value Creed’s services. Optimize performance with fast and accurate data extraction, reconciliation, calculation, and reporting.

DevOps

Value Creed helps organizations integrate DevOps across CTRM and manage the cultural shift that perpetually feeds on itself to deliver continuous improvement and proactive identification and creation of desirable product features.

Key Takeaways

Value Creed ensures a holistic approach to performance challenges with meticulous assessment and implementation phases. By leveraging cutting-edge technologies like Azure Application Insights, Value Creed delivers measurable enhancements, yielding tangible results, ensuring seamless operations, and maximizing revenue potential. Choosing Value Creed guarantees a comprehensive strategy addressing performance hurdles in Endur ETRM systems.

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Revolutionize Your Business Operations: Introducing Our Integrated and Automated Invoice Document Generation System

Revolutionize your business with our integrated and automated invoice document generation system, transcending the inefficiencies of manual processes. The current method may pose a few challenges with operational efficiency, leading to escalated labor costs, delayed payments, and increased risk of customer dissatisfaction. Our solution tackles these challenges head-on, transforming the creation of 500 invoices from a monthly 5-8 hour ordeal to a swift 5-8 minute task.

Beyond time savings, our system elevates the Back Office, Accounting, and Finance teams’ capabilities. Through automated validation and document creation, we slash the risk of manual errors, accelerating the entire invoicing cycle. Our customizable file-naming feature ensures systematic organization and easy document retrieval, streamlining data management and bolstering tracking capabilities. Experience a more streamlined, productive invoicing process that eradicates operational bottlenecks and fortifies accuracy.

A Comprehensive Overview of Manual Invoice Document Generation Challenges

The manual invoice document generation process may further add challenges related to human errors and compliance violations. This jeopardizes the company’s financial health and reputation. Implementing an automated system is crucial to mitigating these risks and fostering positive business outcomes.

The current process involves several steps for the creation of invoice documents within a business environment:

Create and Validate Invoice Details

This initial phase requires entering transaction specifics such as amounts and dates. Validation follows to ensure accuracy. Subsequently, an authorization step checks for compliance with company policies and financial regulations, aligning the invoice with established standards.

Generate Invoice Document

Upon approval, users select the invoice row and prompt the system to create the document. This involves the generation of a final file, commonly in PDF or other relevant formats.

Document Naming Convention

The generated invoice document follows a standardized naming convention, typically in the format 'Doc Collaboration No.-Surrogate No.' (e.g., Doc1920628-358697.pdf).

An Integrated and Automated Solution for Precise, Efficient, and Compliant Invoice Document Generation

Our suggested solution to streamline the current process and address the challenges is implementing an integrated and automated invoice document generation process. 

To streamline the generation of invoice documents, we initiate a grid job. This job fetches a compilation of invoices that necessitate document generation, utilizing either the Account date or invoice date as parameters within the grid job. The document creation process leverages the Horizon/Allegro Core Webservice (CreateDocument). The linkage between invoices and their respective documents is subsequently established through this collaboration.

Furthermore, our solution empowers users to customize the invoice document file name by incorporating critical details like Invoice Type, Invoice Number, Counterparty Name, and Flow Year and Month. This not only ensures precision in documentation but also provides a tailored and efficient solution to the invoicing process.

The key results from implementing the solution include:

Achieve Efficiency and Accountability with Value Creed's Tailored Solutions

Tackle the challenges posed by manual processes with Value Creed’s tailored solutions and cultivate a streamlined organizational approach. Prioritizing accuracy mitigates risks linked to payment delays, averting disruptions in business partnerships. The suggested solution’s adept data management capabilities establish a transparent financial ecosystem, instilling confidence among stakeholders and underscoring the company’s dedication to governance and accountability.

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Unleashing User-Friendly Precision for Trading Efficiency

Do the users in your trading shop encounter the challenging task of daily manual price comparisons or attempting to identify missing prices? 

The current ‘Price Calculator’ feature in Allegro Horizon may serve as an alternative, proving complex to configure and yet failing to provide the desired user-friendly, informative output, thereby negatively impacting the business decision-making and occasionally leading to errors due to incomplete or inaccurate data.

Our solution features a user-friendly, efficient, and precise extension to significantly reduce the need for human intervention. It aims to streamline processes, improve speed, and minimize the potential for errors. An additional feature, the Ad hoc Price Comparison, is entirely customizable to individual user preferences, offering flexibility without external interference. The system also includes automated alerts to keep users updated, reducing the need for frequent manual involvement. Its high accuracy ensures minimal errors in operations.

Addressing Operational Challenges in Price Comparison Processes

To optimize trading strategies and maximize profitability, Front and Middle office users usually seek automated methods to compare prices in Allegro Horizon against external pricing records. These users require a user-friendly tool for comparing price variations based on market specifics and configured price indexes in Allegro Horizon, crucial for day-to-day business decisions.

The current Allegro Horizon operational process can be enhanced for improved user satisfaction and operational efficiency by refining the “Price Calculation” view. Addressing intricacies and enhancing user-friendliness will empower users, fostering well-informed decision-making and enabling more effective hedging strategies. Optimizing the “Price Calculation” view will enhance operational efficiency, data accuracy, and the overall quality of decision-making, ultimately contributing to the business’s success and effectiveness.

Optimizing Price Comparison Processes

Our proposed solution aims to improve the efficiency of the current process. This involves creating two distinct configuration views and two comparison views, while also integrating message events to alert the Middle Office and Admin users about missing prices or instances where prices exceeded predefined thresholds.

The Price Compare Config view plays a crucial role by allowing users to configure vital parameters such as indices, index types, products, and dates for price comparisons. Users can also set threshold values in both dollar and percentage terms to analyze day-on-day price changes. This view incorporates a ‘DefaultDates’ function in its ribbon, streamlining date configuration by automatically setting dates to the ‘prior day’ and ‘prior day-1’. Moreover, the system automates date rolling to accommodate weekends and holidays, aligning with diverse holiday calendars associated with various products. 

The Price Comparison view utilizes the configurations established in the Price Compare Config view to offer a thorough analysis of day-on-day price variations. This view presents users with essential information such as Price Index, Product, Previous Price, Previous Delivery Dates, Compared Price Dates, Compared Delivery Dates, Previous and Current Prices, Price Differences, and Percentage Differences. Notably, if the dollar or percentage change between Price Index dates or Delivery Dates exceeds the predetermined threshold, the system automatically sends an alert to the Middle Office via email. This simplifies the identification and resolution of issues.

Furthermore, we implemented the “Adhoc Price Compare Config” and Adhoc Price Comparison” views, providing customized configurations for users who need tailored settings. This personalized approach guarantees that any modifications made within these views are visible exclusively to the specific user in Horizon.

Elevating Efficiency: Key Features in Price Comparison Solution

Our solution significantly enhances the efficiency of the current process through various key features:

Streamlined Configuration

The "Price Compare Config" view allows users to easily configure crucial parameters, such as indices, index types, products, comparison dates, and thresholds for price changes. This simplifies setup, enabling quicker and more accurate configuration.

Automated Default Dates

The "DefaultDates" function in the Price Compare Config ribbon provides a one-click solution to set default comparison dates, saving time and ensuring consistency across all records. Automatic date rolling, accounting for weekends and holidays, reduces manual adjustments and increases efficiency.

Holistic Price Comparison

The "Price Comparison" view presents a comprehensive summary of day-on-day price changes, eliminating the need for manual calculations and cross-referencing. This streamlines the identification of discrepancies and enhances data integrity assessment.

Alerts for Threshold Exceedance

Our solution triggers alerts when the price change surpasses defined thresholds, minimizing manual intervention. Proactive alerting ensures prompt issue identification and communication to the Middle Office via email, reducing response times.

User-Specific Ad hoc Configuration

The "Adhoc Price Compare Config" and "Adhoc Price Comparison" views cater to individual user preferences for ad-hoc needs, offering similar functionality as their counterparts.

Our solution also caters to simplified client tasks, precise data and calculated outcomes, time efficiency, accuracy and completeness of pricing data, and informed decision-making and risk management. This results in streamlined processes, reduced manual errors, and improved responsiveness in the trading and financial environment.

Elevate Trading Strategies with Value Creed

Our solution stands out due to its multifaceted approach to price comparison and analysis, setting it apart from other available alternatives. Beyond providing a comprehensive report-type feature for price comparisons, our tool calculates and displays price differences and percentage variances, enhancing analytical capabilities crucial for decision-making. By automating complex tasks, improving data accuracy, and ensuring a user-friendly experience, our solution optimizes and simplifies the process. This comprehensive enhancement in day-to-day operations for the Middle Office and ETRM Admin users ultimately facilitates better decision-making while significantly reducing manual efforts.

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Optimizing Natural Gas Scheduling Challenges

Navigating the intricacies of Natural Gas Scheduling involves addressing complexities in buying, selling, inventory management, and trading. Businesses employing CTRM tools for tasks like nomination creation, transportation, and inventory monitoring often find themselves limited to data collection. However, these tools offer limited insights into critical challenges such as supply-demand balance, load projection, imbalance monitoring, inventory movements, service fees, loss computations, mileage-based scheduling, and swift report generation for Scheduler groups to make informed decisions.

Value Creed presents a robust suite of Scheduling Reports that streamlines decision-making, empowering trading entities to assess Natural Gas transactions based on Strategy, Portfolios, Market Volatility, and Risk. These reports are pivotal for efficient inventory management, cost control, accurate forecasting, and heightened reliability, ensuring success in Natural Gas Scheduling and trading.

Value Creed's Strategic Approach and Robust Reporting Suite

In the past, businesses faced challenges managing data from multiple sources, causing data fragmentation and inefficiencies. Once the scheduling data is integrated into the CTRMs like Allegro, our Scheduling reports offer a suite of powerful reports to drive data-driven decisions and optimize your operations.

This ensures clear insights into portfolio optimization, streamlined load management, and accurate demand forecasting. Clients benefit from precise daily transaction insights, fostering robust risk management and strategic hedging. The streamlined inventory management, coupled with periodic and on-demand reports, enhances overall business performance significantly.

Value Creed presents a tailored solution with Scheduling Report Suites for Allegro Horizon, meticulously crafted to enhance Natural Gas trading operations. This suite streamlines complex decision-making, allowing comprehensive analysis of Natural Gas transactions. The suite comprises key reports:

Daily Gas Summary Report

Quickly grasp trading activities with categorized insights into Tradebook, Contracts, and Counterparty.

Gas Storage Management

Efficiently manage storage and inventory movements, streamlining operations for both Pipelines and Storage Contracts.

Capacity Release Reports

Features insights for understanding capacity usage and release strategies.

Daily - Dispatch Reporting

Fine-tune strategies with categorized insights into Tradebook, Strategies, Seasons, and Market Area.

Ending Inventory Report

Snapshot of gas inventory at different market areas, aiding future decision-making

Plan Vs. Forecast Volume Report

Facilitate precise predictions by comparing plans with actual volumes.

Toggle Deals Reporting

Track and analyze toggle deals, offering insights on risk management and decision-making.

Empowering Success in Natural Gas Trading: Value Creed's Comprehensive Solution

Value Creed’s solution delivers tangible results, empowering businesses to thrive in the challenging landscape of Natural Gas trading. The implementation of Value Creed’s solution in the Natural Gas trading industry yields significant outcomes:

Our Scheduling Reports drive a 25% increase in operational efficiency by providing clear, data-driven guidance, eliminating inefficiencies tied to fragmented data.

Businesses, guided by our comprehensive tool, swiftly adapt to market fluctuations, making timely and informed decisions for maximizing profitability.

Tailoring portfolios to market areas, trade books, and strategies, our solution enables data-driven adjustments aligned with trading goals, facilitating active load management and demand forecasting.

Equipping businesses to protect scheduling operations and investments in the dynamic Natural Gas trading landscape, our solution anticipates and mitigates risks such as conflicts, disruptions, price fluctuations, and logistical challenges, ensuring efficient and secure scheduling.

Using our reports streamlines inventory management, minimizing wastage, optimizing resource allocation, and responding effectively to demand fluctuations, thereby reducing costs and enhancing operational efficiency.

Our reports provide a transparent breakdown of all fees, including precise calculations for Pipeline charges and associated fees.

Businesses benefit from generating both periodic and ad-hoc requests for reports, providing valuable insights into operations and facilitating strategic decision-making.

Understanding the uniqueness of each business, we tailor our suite to meet distinct requirements and goals.

Our reports address critical factors such as strategy, portfolio management, market volatility, regional insights, and risk assessment, serving as a valuable resource for energy companies to make informed, data-driven decisions impacting scheduling and transportation activities.

Going beyond being a set of reports, our comprehensive strategy seamlessly integrates with customers’ operations, resulting in streamlined and more efficient business processes. This enables businesses to make informed decisions swiftly, adapt to market fluctuations, optimize portfolios, manage risk proactively, and operate inventory efficiently.

Revolutionizing Natural Gas Scheduling with Value Creed

The upgraded scheduling report solution marks a significant advancement in addressing external operational challenges in natural gas scheduling. Leveraging established Allegro and Horizon data tables, these reports continuously evolve to meet dynamic business requirements and industry trends. The introduction of new processes within the ETRM system has transformed schedulers’ operations, offering flexibility and efficiency.

The results signify the solution’s success, showcasing increased ETRM system utilization, reduced scheduling time, cost savings, enhanced data accuracy, streamlined data management, boosted profitability in trades, heightened user satisfaction, and improved operational throughput. These outcomes not only align with evolving industry needs but also position our solution as a pivotal contributor to the success of natural gas scheduling, providing valuable insights and support for informed decision-making.

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Empowering Energy Traders with Advance Solutions

Timely pricing data empowers traders with informed decision-making. The seamless integration of pricing interfaces is pivotal for accurate business operations and provides crucial insights for effective risk management, given the direct impact of prices on energy trading profitability. Our solution not only automates price imports into RightAngle from diverse sources but also introduces advanced accelerators to boost the efficiency of existing interfaces. Furthermore, it offers invaluable support to clients in the Northern region, where extreme cold conditions require meticulous consideration of temperature correction factors in trading dynamics.

The Imperative for Automation in Risk Management and Financial Operations

Currently, users engage in a manual and error-prone process for price corrections, manually verifying prices against alternative sources and leading to inaccuracies in trade confirmations and settlements. This approach lacks automation, particularly for critical factors like temperature corrections, requiring additional manual intervention and diminishing pricing accuracy.

The absence of prices distorts risk assessments, compromising effective portfolio valuations and exposing assets to unforeseen risks. Manual reconciliation processes are both time-consuming and error-prone, resulting in increased operational costs. Additionally, oversights in temperature correction and resource-intensive maintenance contribute to inefficiencies, placing the business at a competitive disadvantage in a technology-driven market. Swift adoption of advanced solutions is imperative for streamlining risk management and financial processes.

Comprehensive Solutions for Enhanced Data Management and Reporting Efficiency

We’ve developed a comprehensive solution to address identified issues. Our system effortlessly imports real-time prices, rectifies missing or incorrect data, and issues real-time alerts for proactive problem-solving. Prioritizing data integrity, centralized management, transparency, and compliance; it significantly improves business performance and guarantees accurate valuations.

Custom Interface Tasks

This solution revolves around customized jobs with diverse functions such as importing price files into RightAngle, promptly notifying the business team of pricing discrepancies (missing, duplicated, or incorrect prices), and rectifying prices in instances of discrepancies related to temperature correction factors.

Archiving process

The solution also features a robust archiving process to prevent file and data duplication, ensuring data integrity.

Staging Reports

Provides sophisticated reporting through staging and historical reports, acting as a centralized information repository. It facilitates clear audit trails, fostering enhanced data transparency and accountability.

Benefits of the Proposed Solution

Step into the future of energy trading with our advanced solution. Real-time alerts, proactive issue resolution, and enhanced portfolio management streamline risk management. Our system ensures data integrity, efficiency, and regulatory compliance, empowering decision-makers for strategic success in a dynamic market.

The customized task promptly informs the business team of pricing problems like missing, duplicated, or incorrect price files, ensuring quick attention and action to minimize the impact on trading and risk management activities.

Timely notifications empower proactive risk management, allowing risk analysts to swiftly take corrective actions, such as delaying the end-of-day (EOD) process. This proactive approach prevents potential financial losses and mitigates risks before they escalate.

Alerts facilitate efficient portfolio management, enabling risk analysts to make timely adjustments to allocation and rebalancing strategies. This optimization enhances the overall performance of the portfolio.

Our solution’s archiving process crucially prevents data duplicity by systematically ensuring the uniqueness of each archived file, reducing the likelihood of errors and discrepancies in the system.

Staging and historical reports establish a centralized repository for pricing data, streamlining data management processes, and acting as a comprehensive reference for audits, reporting, and future decision-making.

The utilization of a staging table creates a transparent audit trail for all pricing data, enhancing organizational accountability. Users can trace the history of pricing data, simplifying the identification and correction of discrepancies.

 

Efficient alerts reduce manual efforts and resource allocation. Streamlining the resolution process enables risk analysts to allocate their time and resources efficiently, directing their focus toward strategic risk management activities.

Our solution ensures pricing data integrity, empowering decision-makers with reliable information for better-informed strategies and overall improved decision-making.

Addressing temperature corrections is crucial in mitigating risks associated with extreme cold. Traders assess impacts on commodity quality, quantity, and transportation, making informed decisions to counter weather-induced variations.

 

Our solution’s documentation and audit trails ensure regulatory compliance in the energy trading sector, meeting reporting requirements and averting penalties.

 

Precise Pricing and Strategic Solutions with Value Creed

Our expert team provides a suite of essential services for this solution. This includes in-depth business analysis, solution design detailing customized operations, development aligned with client specs, comprehensive testing, and deployment within RightAngle with ongoing support.

Our proposed solution revolutionizes pricing data management, ensuring precise risk assessments, accurate portfolio valuations, and minimized financial risks. By optimizing hedging strategies and mitigating operational and financial risks, it fosters efficiency, cost savings, and a competitive edge in dynamic markets.

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