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About/Service levels and customer outcomes/Service Standards
Our service standards form part of our Customer Charter. They have been developed in consultation with customers and reflect what customers expect of us.
The service standards have been approved by the Essential Services Commission and cover the period from 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2023. The standards reflect our performance in recent years and the changing work environment resulting from population growth and climate change.
We report on our performance against these standards each year.
Unplanned water supply interruptions
Unplanned interruptions are leaks or bursts in the water supply network. They are categorised as Priority 1, 2 or 3 according to the following definitions. The priority level is determined by staff based on the information provided by the person who advised of the incident as well as what is found on site.
1Western Water experienced a major increase in the number of priority 2 incidents during the year due to automation of real time reporting and a review of incident definitions. This affected our average response times. We believe that we will be able to reduce response times significantly in the coming year through a range of improvements at our operations centre and in our incident management processes.
Planned water supply interruptions
Planned interruptions are those occasions when Western Water needs to turn off the water supply to undertake necessary maintenance or other activities.
2Planned water supply interruptions restored within 5 hours were not met at a 99% level because of the one water supply interruption incident that resulted in the payment of GSLs in FY19. This is considered an extraordinary event which we do not expect to recur in future years.
Western Water’s focus is on preventative maintenance for the sewerage system. Nonetheless, unplanned blockages and spills can occur. When they do, our service standards aim to minimise impacts to customers and the environment.
3Sewer incidents were more frequent and took longer to rectify than expected as around half were in areas not yet reviewed through our sewer CCTV inspection program. These areas will be included in the program over the next few years. In addition, we are increasing our sewer maintenance program to bring results back in line with standards.
While there are many customer service performance targets for Western Water staff, two standards are highlighted in our Customer Charter relating to complaints and how quickly we respond to phone calls.
*This standard was only acceptable to customers if emergency calls were answered within 30 seconds.
4The higher than expected number of complaints to EWOV will be addressed by increasing training for new employees in customer-facing roles to better deal with customer queries and understand EWOV's role.
5Actions are in place to improve telephone call response times to ensure we meet this standard (and that 100% of emergency calls are answered within 30 seconds). Improvements will also be realised once the online customer portal is available in late 2019.