Water

The water utility sector is probably the one that we know the best. This is where we have developed a lot of our workforce management expertise; we’ve led game-changing transformation initiatives and helped to implement innovations that have set new benchmarks. But that doesn’t mean we are complacent about the ways in which we can support the industry, or its unique challenges.

Your challenges

Water utilities are subject to ongoing and evolving change. Private ownership, business drivers of profit and return on investment, shareholder demands, OFWAT and other regulatory bodies, customer expectations, changes in communication media, and a prominence on the political agenda provide a heady mix. Most recently service incentive mechanism (SIM) scores, the TOTEX approach, and the drive towards retail / wholesale separation continue to ensure the sector never stands still.

And it’s all too easy to forget that behind each running tap and working drain, is an infrastructure of towers, reservoirs, boreholes, pumping stations, and treatment works, as well as miles and miles of pipework and connections to households and business, all of which require continual replacement, refurbishment, routine maintenance and, on occasion, reactive repair.

In short, field-based operations, and their supporting functions, are all-important in the water industry.

Issues we typically encounter:

  • Below-expectation customer service
  • Job backlogs
  • Failing and at-risk assets
  • Priority work not being done, including maintenance work on critical assets
  • The mix of planned and reactive work, and the cost of reactive work
  • An absence of planning
  • Ineffective work schedules manifesting in idle time for engineers, excessive travel and environmental impacts
  • Reactive and unplanned use of contractor resources
  • Employee disengagement
  • Conflict between the back office and the field
  • Lack of real-time or forward looking performance metrics

How we can help

Our prime focus is on job and workforce management; for water companies, we help ensure that service provision, asset serviceability, regulatory compliance, environmental responsibility and other business drivers are all met. And we do this with a deep understanding of the business processes that deliver field-based operations in the water industry:

  • Asset management
  • Job management
  • Resource management, including insourcing / outsourcing decisions
  • Customer management
  • Planning
  • Logistics
  • Scheduling and deployment
  • Mobile
  • Information, including performance dashboards

We are often asked to:

  • Develop a workforce management strategy
  • Transform planning and scheduling functions
  • Implement new IT (back office and field)
  • Provide programme assurance around delivery
  • Manage change

We genuinely love working with water companies; there’s a willingness to innovate, a desire to do things better and a collaborative culture that fits exactly with how we do things. And it’s great to know the work we’re doing will have benefits for us all as consumers.

Our Water Experience

We understand how field operations work in water companies. In recent years we have, for example:

  • Supported Anglian Water through 3 major transformation programmes covering Customer Management, Planning, Contractor Management, Scheduling and Mobile
  • Played a leadership role in implementing / embedding the use of Click Schedule at Thames Water
  • Worked with Scottish Water to deliver a Mobile Strategy
  • Supported Severn Trent Water in developing a transformation approach for Field Based Operations

Speak to our industry specialist

Mark Thompson

Mark has a depth of water industry experience that won’t be found in many other consultancies. He has worked with Anglian Water for a number of years in roles which have helped to transform their operations, including improvements to planning and despatch functions, information management and scheduling processes. Mark has recently worked at South West Water to help review and shape their vision for future fieldforce operations.

The water utility sector is probably the one that we know the best. See how we can help your team.

Talk to one of our team today