Water UK EventsLeakage Conference 2013

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Water UK held its 14th Annual Leakage Conference in Birmingham last October. The event was chaired by Roger Harrington, Managing Director, Sembcorp Bournemouth Water and attended by over 130 delegates from across the industry including water companies, supply chain and regulators.

In the run up to submission of business plans, it was an interesting time to be discussing changes and latest developments taking place within the industry. PR14 has provided an opportunity for companies to rethink their approach and to benefit from the enhanced customer engagement associated with the development of plans.

Nicci Russell, Director of Parliamentary and Public Affairs, Ofwat said that customers have an increased awareness of leakage issues and are more concerned about these issues than ever before. Research carried out by CCWater explored customer perceptions of leakage. Deryck Hall, Head of Policy and Research at CCWater presented the findings which showed that customers believe water companies should be devoting more resources but the majority of customers are not willing to pay more for leakage to be reduced.

There is a need for the industry to communicate effectively to ensure that accurate and positive messaging informs and involves the consumer about the valuable work the industry is doing to invest over the long-term. With companies such as Scottish Water listening to the increased customer demand for further leakage reductions, it was agreed that innovation is required to deliver on customer expectations. The question is how can this be executed effectively?

Complementing the morning session's focus on customer engagement was the afternoon session which looked at training, development and performance of staff and contractors. This aspect is key to improving informed communications with customers and meeting expectations. Finally, operational and technical perspectives highlighted the continued improvement in technology and explored the need for real-time data.

Delegate pack can be accessed here.

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