Start now - advice to utilities on retail competition
Utilities planning to engage with the £2.3B English retail market in water when it is introduced in 2017 should €œstart now€, says Business Stream chief executive Mark Powles.
Speaking exclusively to WWTonline, he said: “For incumbents, it might feel like it’s three-and-a-half years away, but start now. Start thinking about data, start cleaning data. That’s been a massive challenge for us.”
Drawing on his experience of building the one of the world’s first separated retail businesses for the Scottish market from 2007, he also urged the water companies to think about customers as individuals “with different personalities and different needs. Start thinking about the systems you’re going to need to be customer-focused, rather than property-focused”.
For those utilities not planning to enter the acquisitive retail market, he said, they too should take action.
“You still need to be a competent wholesaler. A lot of the services I deliver to customers, [wholesalers] deliver to me… If they’re not good at facing up to a different set of customers, the new entrants, then the market won’t work and customers won’t benefit.”
- Water industry supports WaterSafe register for plumbers The water companies have given their support to WaterSafe, the UK's first ever all industry national plumbing assurance... Read More >
- PR19 plans may define future of industry - CCWater CEO Plans submitted to Ofwat this week "could define the future of the water industry in England and Wales", Consumer Council... Read More >
- Resilience tops government wishes for water sector Building resilience and protecting vulnerable customers are the government's top two priorities for the water sector,... Read More >
- A data-led approach to clearing FOG Water utilities have a major challenge working with local food businesses to prevent fats, oils and grease entering the... Read More >
- The robots aren't coming... they’re already here Stantec lead design engineer Dan Causley looks at advances in technology and their role in boosting productivity in the... Read More >
- Opinion: A smarter way to read the water network Smart metering technology could be the key to closing water companies' knowledge gaps about usage in their network -... Read More >
- Smart thinking: The digital asset management revolution With many of the pieces now in place for a digital asset management revolution, AI and machine learning solutions are set... Read More >
- Networking skills: MUS helps Leeds to smarten up Morrison Utility Services has delivered a groundbreaking smart water network project in Leeds on behalf of Yorkshire Water Read More >