We have a number of commercial and industrial customers that use large volumes of water, or who discharge non-standard waste to our sewer network. We call these businesses Major Customers and we have spoken to most of them to get their feedback on the key challenges they are facing in the years ahead, and what their expectations are around our services.

Members of our Executive Leadership Team carried out one on one interviews with these Major Customers, and the feedback received was summarised and provided to the Community Panel.

Lockdowns caused by the pandemic and staff shortages have increased the operational costs of our major customers and impacted their bottom line. Many of them are investing in onsite infrastructure to reduce their reliance and impact on our supply networks.

Global supply chain delays and increased prices have caused issues for businesses with lower profit margins. There is an acknowledgement that investment in our assets is needed to cope with the current levels of growth and climate change.

Intergenerational debt

They prefer smooth pricing as it helps them to plan for the future. They also prefer a user pays systems where the customers who experience the benefit of investment are the ones who pay for it.

Community contributions

They acknowledge that water efficient practices reduce demand on our networks and benefit their bottom line. Treating wastewater onsite reduces the demand on our sewer systems and allows businesses to reuse water. Efficient use of water is also beneficial to the environment.

Protecting against drought

They can use large volumes of water in their business processes. Another drought causing restricted access to water would be harmful to many businesses. Some are planning to become less reliant on our services but continue to need a secure water supply.

Supporting customers experiencing vulnerability

They agree that we should support customers experiencing vulnerability. They would like to see support for employers to maintain sustainable local jobs and suggested pricing should be shaped around social demographics.