Certrec Client’s 20-Minute NERC Audit Experience Results in Significant Savings

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Certrec’s Office of NERC Compliance offers a cost-effective solution that can help entities meet their compliance goals.

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Certrec, a leading regulatory compliance and licensing service provider that supports NERC and NRC compliance, announced today that a registered entity client had a successful NERC audit that lasted all of 20 minutes.

Certrec’s Client States “The audit experience far exceeded our best case scenario expectations.”

Background - The registered entity was well prepared for their audit. Certrec was selected when the entity realized very early that they lacked sufficient human resources to handle their entire NERC compliance program. Providing the necessary expertise to perform thorough self-assessments, engineering analyses, and IT evaluations helped ensure compliance. Certrec helped the registered entity achieve their compliance goal. “The auditor described our program as ‘robust and compliant,” stated the client’s NERC compliance manager.

Significant savings - Many registered entities, as well as regional entities, invest significant resources in audit preparation. Initially, the registered entity organizes and reviews procedures, policies, and evidence. RSAWs are developed. Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) are identified and prepared for their role in the audit. Mock audits are held to prepare the team for a successful audit with their regional entity. During these activities, the regional entity is preparing for the audit: reviewing previous audits with the registered entity, deciding how many and what standards will be included in the audit, staffing, etc.

When all aspects are considered, the registered entity and the regional entity, each have invested thousands of dollars in resources to prepare for an audit. Some estimates range from $75,000 to $100,000 for each entity.

Determine current state of regulatory program - Many registered entities may find audit preparation challenging due to the dynamic, and, sometimes, complex technical nature of the associated regulations. Often these regulations can be misunderstood, and, in some cases, may go unnoticed by the registered entity. A proven regulatory program can provide significant savings. NERC pays close attention to entities that historically experience challenges in compliance, adding more frequent audits, increased audit scope, and, possibly, fines.

With Certrec your NERC work is done once and done right.

Founded in 1988, Certrec is an engineering and technology based organization providing regulatory support services in the electric power industry. With over 1,200 cumulative years of direct industry experience (including nuclear, fossil, and renewables), Certrec has developed exceptional capabilities to support regulatory activities emanating from regulatory entities such as the North American Electric Reliability Corporation and Regional Entities (NERC), the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and other regulatory agencies. Certrec's Office of NERC Compliance (ONC), Office of Licensing and Compliance (OLC), Office of Assessment and Recovery (OAR), and Office of New Plant (ONP) services are used by utilities and entities across the United States to help manage the regulatory process.

Certrec offers support from highly skilled and experienced industry professionals including personnel with degrees in a variety of engineering disciplines (Civil, Electrical, Mechanical, and Nuclear). Additionally, Certrec's staff has multiple degreed personnel in physics, communications, a variety of MBAs, and information technology. This highly skilled team of personnel has direct working experience in all regulatory areas of licensing, compliance, and engineering including nuclear, fossil, and renewable generation and transmission.

For over 28 years, Certrec has been utilizing its hundreds of years of industry experience to help clients develop and manage solutions to complex regulatory issues. Combining this direct industry experience with Certrec's Information Technology assets has led to development of technology-based solutions and tools directly targeted to the electric power industry and specifically focused on helping clients manage regulatory issues.

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Michelle Thomas