The Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution (PHED) Plc has unveiled a new business structure to constantly meet the increasing electricity needs of her valued customers and the challenging dynamics in the business operating environment as it strives to become the number one electricity distribution company in Nigeria.
This strategic drive to take her services to new frontiers have ushered in a new regional structure to replace the existing zonal structure for quick wins and produce smart goals in an evolving business environment.
The MD/CEO, Dr Henry Ajagbawa disclosed this business decision to the executives of both the Senior Staff Association of Electricity and Allied Companies (SSAEAC) and the National Union of Electricity Employee (NUEE) during its maiden meeting with them this year, at PHED Corporate Headquarters on Monday, February 7, 2022.
Dr Ajagbawa who has strong ties with both unions, informed members of the unions that the new structure is intended to quickly drive performance and monitor the company’s operations at product levels.
He listed the three product categories as, maximum demand (MD), non-maximum demand post-paid customers (PP) and pre-paid metered customers (PPM). According to him, this model will be delivered on a six-region structure, three product managers and commercial officers supported by several linesmen.
Dr Ajagbawa commended the zonal/feeder management structure that existed and noted that it had made giant strides in improving the company’s revenue. However, the company is still struggling and has introduced this new model to help further achieve the company’s objectives.
The MD/CEO spoke extensively on the challenges of the company, as it is industry wide, but with peculiar scenarios in the Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution (PHED) Plc, ranging from inability to collect revenue from a large percentage of our customers, restiveness, staff assault, deductions from source by authorities, inability to meet contractual agreements, paying TCN for energy not sold to a segment of consumers, etc.
He therefore sought the support and understanding of the labour leaders on the modalities of implementation of the new business model and revealed that additional lines workers will be hired to bridge operational gaps.
Dr Ajagbawa also mentioned that the existing crop of Marketers and Feeder Managers may not have active roles like before based on the new structure.
Responding, the labour leaders commended the idea and agreed that through internal advertisement, the vacancies could be announced with marketers and feeder managers given the first opportunity to apply, and those who are successful could be trained and converted to Linesmen. However, the MD/CEO reminded them that Linesmen are technical people unlike the marketers who do not possess the required technical skills.
The labour leaders sought to know why the company does not pay exit package to her disengaged staff, and the MD/CEO explained that the company pays as often as she could noting that the financial health of the company as they have seen has made it difficult for PHED to be up to date with the payment. He explained that the payments are staggered, and the same thing applies to the payment of other monthly remittances. He explained that the essence is to keep the company in operations and ensure that every staff ultimately gets its due. He debunked the rumour of favouritism and compulsory Saturday work at PHED.
Dr Ajagbawa appealed to the Union Leaders to assist in sensitizing their members on the objectives of the company and what their members are required to do to help the new business model succeed. The Union leaders agreed to assist in sensitizing their members, noting that they have successfully done so in other places in the past.