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Why work in: Demand Forecasting

30/11 2017Posted by: npower Resourcing Team Subscribe to this blog


Demand Forecasting is just one of npower’s dynamic and interesting business areas, and one which offers a variety of challenging roles for forecasters. While the work may typically be thought of as being highly analytical and numerical, it is also ideal for those who have technical skills and the communication nous required to manage stakeholders and respond to change. Here’s what you need to know to become part of the team:

What we do

In essence, our function is all about forecasting how much electricity and gas customers are going to use in the future. We do this for a number of reasons: To know how much energy we need to buy from the wholesale market to meet our customer requirements, to ensure we get the price right and so that we know we’re not buying too much or too little, both of which can cost us significantly.

Why join us?

The nature of energy forecasting is that feedback and results can come more rapidly than in other forecasting roles, particularly for short-term energy forecasts. It’s incredibly satisfying to predict how much energy will be used over the next week and then have almost immediate feedback on the accuracy of your forecast. This regularity means that forecasters can tweak and refine their models and approaches on an ongoing basis, with transparency as to how they’re performing. What’s more, the work we do in Demand Forecasting has a significant impact on the overall business. The impact of inaccurate forecast can run into the millions of pounds, which makes for work that can be both challenging and exciting.

The rapid evolution of the energy industry means it’s an exciting time to be working in this field, and we must balance this with our responsibility to ensure the energy supply is secure, sustainable and affordable. We work with cutting-edge technology that adapts as the market does, for example having to react to the rapid increase and breadth of renewable generation technologies.

More generally, npower promotes a brilliant company culture where the structure is very open and team members are encouraged to share ideas at every level. The company has a strong focus on development, and those who work hard and are interested in progressing will be given the tools to do so. The training is extensive and we offer plenty of internal learning and development options. It’s also a fun environment to work in. The Solihull location combined with the social opportunities and mix of people on-site ensures our team enjoy coming in to work.

For more information on how forecasting fits into the energy industry, take a look at this video.

Opportunities available

With a team of around 20, there’s plenty of opportunities within the Demand Forecasting team. One of the ways you can move into this part of the business is by taking part in npower’s Forecasting Challenge, which gives students the chance to secure a summer internship programme within the retail energy management business area. It gives students a taste of energy forecasting and helps to create a pipeline of future talent for this part of the business. The size of the team and progression opportunities available at the company mean there are many horizontal and vertical movements available within the team.

Skills you need

People from a mathematical or statistics background, or indeed anything numerical, can find plenty to enjoy in Demand Forecasting. Experience within the energy sector isn’t necessary, and indeed many of our team members don’t come from a strict stats or energy background. A lot of our work involves stakeholder management and change, so we need people who have a balance of mathematical and communication skills. Forecasters need to be able to look at short-term and long term predictions and use the data at hand accordingly – sometimes data sets won’t be full or forecasts don’t go the way you’d planned for, so you need to be resilient, a quick decision maker and able to adapt to change.

Join us

If you’re interested in joining the Demand Forecasting team, take a look at our latest roles here. For more on what it’s like to work at npower, check out our blogs.
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