Environment

Our business is intrinsically linked to the environment as we rely on it for our raw product, water. For this reason we do all we can to ensure there is a clean, resilient and sustainable supply available for current and future water customers whilst ensuring there is enough water available to support the needs of the environment too. Click 'Discover More' to hear from our Head of Environment, Emma Goddard.

People

Our people are dedicated to providing you with the best service possible, whether they’re out in the field searching for leaks, managing our operational sites, testing the quality of your water or answering your queries. Each and every person within the business is dedicated to delivering you the safe reliable tap water supply you expect. Click 'Discover more' to hear from our Head of HR, Sian Jenkins.

Last updated 08-07-21

We are constantly surveying customers to make sure we’re delivering the service you expect.

Each year we contact 2,400 customers at random to understand, from your point of view, what we’re doing well and where we can improve, reacting to comments made on a variety of subjects.

To gain a better understanding of our customers’ views we have separated them into various attitudinal customer segments. This means we go beyond understanding what the average customer thinks of us to having far greater insight into the varying views and priorities.

Segmented satisfaction of household customers (scroll down for results)

Each year we survey customers for each of our six customer attitudinal segments below to understand whether they consider the:

  • Appearance of their tap water to be acceptable
  • Taste and odour of their water to be acceptable
  • Level of leakage to be acceptable
  • Direct interaction they’ve had with us to be positive
  • Water supply they receive has sufficient pressure
  • Frequency and duration of supply interruptions to be acceptable
  • Frequency of water use restrictions to be acceptable

Surveying our customers in this way is an innovative new approach for us and the industry too and one where we have also set ourselves stretching targets.

Although this is a new measure, we have surveyed customer segments previously and the targets across all these measures were set following our performance between July 2017 and March 2018, from that position we have built into the targets improvement across all measures.

How have we performed?

The results of each of the six segments are shown below.

Having tracked our key questions on which the attitudinal segment scoring is based, we recognised there was very little upward movement in score despite the improvements we felt we were making in performance. This was mirrored in our work with the Institute of Customer Service, UK Customer Service Index where, across all sectors, customer satisfaction has declined over the previous five years. Despite this landscape we still set ourselves high ambitions to focus on lifting customer scores in all these areas to ensure we continued to focus on delivery improvements.

While we have only hit our target in one segment (Just me and mine) we are taking the learnings forward into 2021/22 where our overarching performance, marketing and communications plans will focus on promoting work we are doing in key areas across the business to work towards improving the scores within all segments.

One of the key business areas where customer satisfaction is lower across the segments is leakage. To improve this we will focus on providing more information to customers, stakeholders and the community to increase awareness of the work we’re doing in this area. Reducing leaks on our pipes is an area where we are high industry performers and continue to strive to improve further. Customers may not be aware of how we’re doing in this area and so it’s important for us to share these messages of success and to hopefully change perceptions.

This is our first year of monitoring groups by segment types having monitored key questions across unsegmented customers in the period 2015-2020.

The impact of Covid-19

There has been no notable impact of Covid-19 on these targets.

Mindful Optimists

Within the Mindful Optimists segment we have a target score of 4.2 out of five.

At the end of the year we scored 4.1 out of five, slightly below our target.

This customer segment dropped by 0.1 over the year with small drops in each of the seven driving questions, acceptably of leakage forming the largest drop in score for this group.

Mindful optimists

Global Advocates

Within the Global Advocates segment, we had a target score of 4.4 out of five.

Our end of year performance score achieved was 4.2 out of five.

This customer segment maintained this overall score throughout the year. While scores for this segment are generally much higher than the overall average for segments, reflecting their support for the work that we are doing, their lowest score remains around the work that we are doing in leakage showing the high expectation of this customer group.

Global advocates

Careful neighbours

Within the Careful Neighbours segment, we had a target score of 4.3 out of five.

At the end of the year our performance hit the target of 4.3 out of five.

Scores for ‘water being a sufficient pressure’ were significantly higher than any other segment being +0.3 above the nearest segment.

Careful neighbours

Just me and mine

Within the Just Me and Mine segment, we had a target score of 4.3 out of five.

At the end of the year, we scored 4.1 out of five.

This segment saw the sharpest drop in scores between the start and the end of the reporting period. Like other segments, the question relating to the acceptability of leakage levels is their lowest at -0.4 below the annual average for that question. The segment has slightly lower scores across all other questions when compared to other segments.

Just me and mine

Busy juggler

Within the Busy Juggler segment, we had a target score of 4.4 out of five.

At the end of the year our performance was 4.3 out of five.

This segment has seen a small increase over the year with even leakage scores being the highest of all customer segments.  Despite this, scores have not moved sufficiently to achieve the improvement desired.

Busy juggler

Living for today

Within the Living for Today segment, we had a target score of 4.3 out of five.

At the end of the year, we scored 4.0 out of five, being below our target by 0.3 for this segment. This segment more than any other, evidenced scores below average in all questions except level of leakage.

Living for today

Case Studies

Groundwater

Driving environmental innovation

In February 2021, we submitted two lead company applications into Ofwat’s £200 million Water in Innovation Challenge.

Nine Mile Ride engineering scheme

Keeping customers satisfied during major engineering works

A £1.4 million investment into revamping the water network for thousands of residents in Berkshire saw more than 60 per cent of customers claim they were satisfied with our communication strategy.

Key worker

The challenges and consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic

The global Covid-19 pandemic presented many challenges but also a unique opportunity to adapt, change and modify practices across the business.

Supporting customers

Helping customers with extra debt support

We’re here to help our customers and while we truly believe that we deliver top quality drinking water for great value, we also recognise that on occasion some of our customers may have difficulties paying their bills.

My account

Putting customers in full control

We place our customers’ priorities at the heart of what we do and this is why we’re constantly looking at ways to make accessing and managing bills and payment plans easier for them.