Corporate Responsibility

Measuring our service.

Last reviewed:
Most of our 15 million customers never need to contact us about the service they receive every day. However, when customers do contact us, we’ll respond promptly, make every effort to understand what they need, and work out how we can help so that they only need to contact us once.

Service Incentive Mechanism.

The Service Incentive Mechanism (SIM) is used by Ofwat to measure the level of service we provide to our household customers who have contacted us. Our SIM performance has continued to improve with our best ever performance this year of 78.43 points, compared to 77.26 out of 100 in 2016/17. We know we need to go much further so we have set ourselves another challenging target for 2018/19 which reflects our commitment to provide quality service our customers expect when they contact us.

Getting it right.

We have seen improvements in all elements of the SIM metric despite some very challenging circumstances caused by the cold weather in early 2018. Total household written complaints are 4 per cent lower than last year. While we aim to eliminate the need for customers to contact us about our service, we have continued to emphasise the resolution of complaints promptly and without customers having to contact us again. We have made further improvements in household complaint resolution with 95.2% of complaints being resolved after the first contact, second stage complaints 19% lower than in the previous year and no customer complaints needed to be investigated by the Consumer Council for Water. We recognise there’s still more to do, and we’re confident we will continue to build on this success.

SIM performance 2016/17 2017/18
Total written complaints 17,809 17,039
Second stage written complaints only 1,007 818
Complaints accepted by the Consumer Council for Water 1 0
Unwanted telephone contacts 511,792 509,964
Customer satisfaction score 4.12 4.17
Total SIM points 77.26 78.43

Improving customer satisfaction.

Our overall performance in the SIM quarterly customer satisfaction survey has improved to 4.17 out of five in 2017/18 from 4.12 in 2016/17.

We have continued to see a steady improvement with customer satisfaction in our wastewater services to 4.22 in 2017/18 from 4.16 in 2016/17 as our Customer Solution Centre has been fully embedded.

Although satisfaction with our water services improved to 3.89 in 2017/18 from 3.81 in 2016/17, our performance in this category is not at the level where we would like it to be and will continue to be a focus point for us.

Customer satisfaction with regard to our revenue services has increased to 4.29 in 2017/18 from 4.26 the previous year which included our best ever performance in this category of 4.51 in the second quarter. While we’re pleased with the progress we’ve made in some areas of the business, we know we need to do much more.

Key performance indicators.

We have developed another suite of measures alongside SIM to demonstrate our intentions and measure the services we provide for our customers. These key performance indicators include:

  • Additional customer satisfaction measures
  • How quickly we resolve complaints at the first stage
  • The number of metered bills we send out based on actual meter readings
  • Providing new online account management facilities for our customers

To see the progress we've made so far, read our 2017/18 annual performance review here.