SOUTH STAFFORDSHIRE PLC NEWS ARTICLE
28/08/14 - South Staffs Water top of customer services league
Industry regulator Ofwat awards top marks to South Staffs Water for a second year running.
The Group is delighted that South Staffs Water is once again the top-performing company in the customer service league table published by Ofwat, achieving the highest SIM score of 89 out of 100.
When averaged out, this latest score places the water company at the head of the league table over the three years since the SIM was introduced in 2011. The ranking is especially important as it acknowledges South Staffs Water as delivering the best customer service out of the 18 companies that make up the UK water industry, while having one of the lowest bills.
Ofwat's service incentive mechanism (SIM) is designed to improve the level of service companies provide. Since its introduction three years ago, South Staffs Water has continually outperformed other water and wastewater companies during a period when the spotlight has remained firmly on customer service and value for money. Talking of its success, Rachel Barber, South Staffs Water's Customer Service Director said; "We have taken time to listen to our customers and reviewed the way we work across all areas of our business. We've embedded an ethos that puts our customers first. Coming top in customer service is testament to our commitment and the support of our staff and supply chain partners."
Customers have been quick to acknowledge the water company's achievement.
Colin Walton, Senior Engineer at Marstons Brewery in Burton upon Trent, said: "As our local water company, South Staffs provides a great service at a great price. Both are vital for our continuing success as a Midlands-based brewery."
With the wider utilities sector challenged with delivering good customer service at affordable prices to the consumer, South Staffs Water is clearly paving the way; a position it intends to fiercely defend over the next AMP period (Ofwat's five year Asset Management Plan period).
Commenting on its vision for future customer service, South Staffs Water's Managing Director, Phil Newland says; "It's not been an easy journey, especially as we remain committed to our affordability agenda and keeping our bills amongst the lowest in the country, but we are confident that our approach is right. We understand that we cannot allow service to falter and welcome our Regulator's encouragement to continually improve service whilst delivering value for money."