Northumbrian Water Partnership

Client:
Northumbrian Water
Sector:
Water
Location:
Northumbria
Project size:
Circa £20m per annum

The Challenge

Through our delivery partner Fastflow, United Living delivers 37,000 individual jobs each year on our Northumbrian Water short cycle minor works contract. This includes many reactive repair and maintenance call outs alongside planned meter services and third party backfill and reinstatement support.

This diverse range of work activities and varied working environments, ranging from the public highway to customers’ private property, presented a unique set of challenges to the contract management team:

  • Getting a suitably skilled team to site quickly to assess the situation and commence work
  • Issuing job information to teams on the road, rather than them having to come back to the office between each job
  • Prompt transfer of information from site to the office, where it is processed and sent onto Northumbrian Water
  • Obtaining real-time updates from site to give our customers the information they need. 
We now work on over 250km of water mains per annum in the North East of England

The Solution

The Contract Administration and Management System, CAMS, was implemented on our Northumbrian Water contract in 2009. CAMS is an end-to-end works tracking system that is fully integrated with field mobile technology (PDAs).

The system is modular, with programmes for planning, job management and noticing, allowing us to tailor the system to best meet the needs of each client and contract. A key factor in choosing CAMS was its capability to interface with client IT systems, providing seamless data transfer and real-time updates.

Further benefits of the system are its ability to provide asset condition and location data, improved customer experience and faster response times to site. Our DG3 Supply Interruptions performance will be better managed using the real-time information and status tracker on CAMS.

Health and safety audits can be carried out using the PDAs, meaning that audit results can be transferred immediately from site to our office where they are collated and analysed. Time taken to reporting the audit results is much faster than the previous paper-based system and the electronic records can be stored and processed more easily.

The Impact

Since the implementation of CAMS we have seen a range of benefits for our clients and customers:

  • Improved customer response times for reactive workstreams
  • 95% reduction in the time taken to transfer meter installation information from site to the Northumbrian Water billing team from 21 days to one day
  • Direct access to works management information such as planned dates, job status, site photographs. This gives the customer service team up to date information to give to customers at the first point of contact and to proactively update the customer during ongoing enquiries
  • Pre-site, during works and post-completion photographs generate increased accountability leading to improved quality of workmanship.

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