Digitalization has become a driving force in the power sector, revolutionizing the way companies operate and innovate. The power industry is witnessing a surge in investment and innovation, particularly in digitalization, evident through patents like low-power vehicle detection and increased strategic deals. Simultaneously, job postings for digitalization-related roles are steadily rising, reflecting the sector’s evolving focus on talent acquisition in this domain. The impact of digitalization extends beyond the power sector, influencing various industries. GlobalData’s “Utilities 2.0: how digitization and decentralization are unlocking new possibilities in power” report offers an in-depth analysis of sector-specific top themes, innovation maps, insights, and vendor lists, unveiling the transformative impact of emerging technologies on the sector’s evolution. Buy the report here.

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This article presents a quarterly round-up of the latest trends in the power industry regarding digitalization. It provides an overview of recent developments in digitalization-related deals, talent acquisition, and patent filings within the power industry.

Diverse applications of digitalization in power industry

Power companies are leveraging digitalization technologies to innovate and improve their businesses, as evidenced by the latest patents in the field. One patent titled "Low-power vehicle detection" by IPS Group, Inc. introduces a parking meter that detects objects in proximity and stores data on their presence. Another patent by Explication Automation, LLC titled "System of privacy oriented automated electric vehicle miles traveled usage fee assessment and settlement using utility smart grid communication network" focuses on assessing fees for electric vehicle usage on roadways. Peak Power Inc's patent "Building load modification responsive to utility grid events using robotic process automation" enables the modification of electrical loads in response to grid events. Lastly, Strong Force Iot Portfolio 2016, LLC's patent "Methods and systems for a data marketplace in a fluid conveyance device environment" introduces a self-organizing data marketplace for fluid conveyance devices. These patents highlight the potential benefits of digitalization technologies in terms of improving efficiency, data collection, and automation for power companies.

The industry experienced a 44% decline in the number of digitalization-related patent applications in Q3 2023 compared with the previous quarter. On an annual basis, the number of digitalization-related patent applications in the power industry witnessed a drop of 33% compared with Q3 2022.

Strategic deal trends in digitalization in power industry

Power companies are not only focusing on innovation to enhance their patent portfolios but are also making strategic investments in digitalization. These investments aim to secure lucrative deals with partners and position themselves at the forefront of industry advancements. Some of the recent deals underscore the importance of digitalization in the power industry.

In Q3 2023, the number of digitalization-related deals in the power industry declined by 63% compared with Q3 2022. On a quarterly basis, there was 71% drop in the number of deals in Q3 2023 compared with the previous quarter.

Impact on hiring

In terms of new job posting, in Q3 2023, the power industry experienced a 20% drop compared with the previous quarter. On an annual basis, job postings also grew by 14%. Notably, management occupations, with a share of 15%, emerged as the top digitalization-related job roles within the power industry in Q3 2023, with new job postings drop by 15% quarter-on-quarter. Computer and mathematical occupations came in second with a share of 15% in Q3 2023, with new job postings dropping by 31% over the previous quarter. The other prominent digitalization roles include architecture and engineering occupations with an 8% share in Q3 2023, and business and financial operations occupations with a 6% share of new job postings.

Siemens, Schneider Electric, Siemens Energy, Engie, and AES are among the top companies leading in digitalization hiring within the power industry.

Countries driving adoption of digitalization in power industry

China is the leading country in digitalization adoption within the power industry, boasting the highest number of digitalization-related patents, jobs, and deals. Meanwhile, the US, the UK, Germany and Canada also maintain significant positions in digitalization adoption within the power industry.

In conclusion, the power industry experienced a temporary decline in digitalization-related patent applications but a significant annual increase. Strategic deals in digitalization surged, highlighting its growing importance. Job postings showed stability with modest quarterly decline but substantial annual growth, led by computer and mathematical occupations. Key players in digitalization hiring included Siemens, Schneider Electric, Siemens Energy, Amentum Services, and Iberdrola. The US led in digitalization adoption in the power industry, with China, the UK, France, and Germany also playing significant roles.

To further understand GlobalData's analysis on digitalization in the power industry, buy the report here.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData patent analytics tracks patent filings and grants across companies and themes. Proprietary databases on deals and job analytics are used to respectively monitor global deal activity and uncover insights from daily job postings to identify trends, company activities, and industry dynamics across different sectors globally.