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Spinning reserve (SR) is an important resource, which can protect power systems without involuntary load shedding. The SR requirement needs to be assigned appropriately. In this study, a probabilistic method is used to optimise the SR requirement. The SR amount is determined by simultaneously optimising the operating cost, reserve cost and the expected interruption cost. Tremendous computational requirements introduced by the expected-energy-not-supplied (EENS) calculation make the major impediment to the optimisation solutions. In this study, a multi-step method is proposed to overcome the computation intractability of the EENS problem. The EENS of each optimisation period is analytically formulated as a piecewise linear function of system spinning reserve of that period. The parameters of the piecewise linear function are derived from the capacity outage probability table, which is established based on the exogenous unit schedule. The efficiency and validity of the proposed method is verified using the IEEE-RTS system.