"When it comes to the ETRM field, it’s not your strongest, but your weakest link that matters,” states Heather Leverett, Partner at Optimus. The statement by the industry veteran does hold true as when it comes to ETRM, no one appreciates when things are going well, but if the things go wrong, everyone is quick to assign blame, making it imperative for CIOs to work on their organization’s weakest links. And why shouldn’t they? ETRM projects are complex and expensive and a project that goes wrong can create a significant loss for the company. By working with the key stakeholders of its ETRM clients, Optimus assists them in better aligning expectations across the business and developing effective relationships with their business peers. “No ETRM project is an IT project. They are all business projects with IT as a delivery partner. The CIO, CRO, Head of Trading, CFO/CAO must all have equal accountability in order for an ETRM implementation to be successful. The leadership and accountability structure must be in place,” says Michelle Bruce, Partner at Optimus. “Optimus highlights issues early if the structure for project success is not well defined. We will work relentlessly to ensure the proper communication, change management and accountability frameworks are in place for success. And, we celebrate collective success with our clients.”
With its focus on nimble market response, successful client delivery, and deployment of knowledgeable and dedicated teams, Optimus has today become the go-to-partner that can understand the needs and opportunities and deliver human capital solutions that drive prosperity in the ETRM space. Shelley Wright, Partner at Optimus, informs, “Our project successes continue to reinforce our belief in providing fit for purpose teams.” Optimus’s model eliminates any conscious or unconscious prioritization of resources based on margin or utilization.
Optimus, through its unique resourcing model combines the best resources for each specific project and provides the “fit for purpose” resources the client needs, reinforcing the strength of the collective team by understanding the capabilities of both internal and third party team members. Michelle goes on to orchestrate a success story where Optimus was approached by a newly formed midstream organization that was looking to build out their infrastructure to position themselves for planned growth over the next several years.
“The ask was to facilitate the purchase and implementation of a system to cover both midstream and marketing activities but the client soon changed directions and asked us to focus on reviewing an in-house system of their parent as a solution,” she states. Through its diligent and focussed process, Optimus proposed that they could facilitate getting that system quickly implemented for the marketing business to remove the immediate spreadsheet risk for the business and quickly add controls. “We also began the search for a midstream system to run their core business. It became apparent that the client was growing rapidly and needed to build out processes and procedures,” explains Michelle. To this end, Optimus proposed an implementation that would work through end-to-end process identification and documentation, while also being in budget.
Through numerous success stories over the years and its relentless pursuit toward delivering to the clients’ needs, Optimus has indeed carved a unique niche for itself in the ETRM landscape. “The traditional consulting models frustrates the client who is already under pressure to both execute on their day job and concurrently work on software and process changes to improve the business operations. We prefer more experienced consultants who can speak the same language as the client speaks. This expedites delivery timeframes and reduces risk due to lack of business and technology understanding,” informs Heather. “We listen to the needs of our clients and the market in order to determine how best to organize our team and plan for growth. We will not set targets that impact the quality of delivery to clients. Our commitments and resulting demonstrated success have been the reason we have continued to grow over the past 15 years and we will not jeopardize our reputation or relationships.”