Reviewing water research with Voeu

Voeu is at the cutting edge of industry research, finding unique opportunities to support the water sector through digitisation and FoS.

Voeu is at the cutting edge of industry research, finding unique opportunities to support the water sector.

The water industry faces many challenges, from rising costs and resource scarcity to climate change to population growth. To meet these challenges, the industry must embrace innovation and new working methods.

Research is essential to developing new technologies and solutions to the water industry’s problems. A robust delivery framework is needed to implement these technologies and solutions effectively and efficiently. Digitisation is transforming the water industry, enabling new ways to collect and analyse data, improve efficiency, and provide better customer service.

The big question is who can advise water utilities, local councils, and delivery providers to maximise the outcomes from research, a delivery framework, and digitisation of networks.

This is where Voeu steps in

Voeu is a specialist water sector commercial advisory consulting practice. Its cutting-edge industry research has unveiled interesting insights across the water sector.

Its investments in water industry research have strengthened its position as a provider of specialist services for this market. This investment is aligned with Voeu’s core areas of expertise: commercial consulting, industry research, and board advisory.

One of Voeu’s key research projects is the Five Streams Project. It sets out to analyse and profile assets across the water sector. This research aims to deliver insights for organisational benchmarking and decision-making. It can also be used as a foundation for investment in innovation, technology, and resources to drive the growth of the water sector.

The research focuses on asset identification, operational performance, and financial indicators. The industry research will be divided into five streams: wastewater, potable water, recycled water, stormwater, and drainage ditches.

The goal is to provide a holistic perspective on the industry. It uses new information to complement existing data from government agencies, regulatory bodies, and industry associations.

Customer service blooms

A flower may not seem like the obvious metaphor for project service delivery. However, Voeu believes that the flowers of service could transform the model for customer service project delivery.

The traditional service delivery concept is evolving, and infrastructure project delivery is no exception. By adopting a customer-centric approach, delivery contractors can significantly enhance the perceived value of their services. A holistic perspective can lead to improved customer satisfaction and better project outcomes.

The Flower of Service concept was initially introduced by Lovelock and Wright. It offers a valuable framework for expanding the notion of service delivery. It likens the core service to the bud of a flower, with the petals representing additional elements that enhance the overall customer experience.

Voeu Managing Director Jason Marshall believes that service offerings, and in particular project delivery, need to look beyond the physical assets and the core services being provided.

“The Flowers of Service concept also considers the relationships and experiences built around the project,” Marshall said. “Applying this approach to infrastructure project delivery gives a comprehensive view of the entire value chain. It emphasises the importance of the relationships between service providers and recipients.”

Adopting a flower-of-service approach to customer service delivery

Delivery contractors can revolutionise infrastructure project delivery by adopting the flower of service concept and reengineering their service offerings. This transformation can be achieved without significantly impacting costs, resulting in a remarkable improvement in the customer experience and delivered value.

By focusing on improving, facilitating, and enhancing services, contractors can redefine what constitutes project success. This approach transcends the mere delivery of physical assets and embraces true customer-centricity.

Embracing the flower of service concept allows infrastructure delivery contractors to differentiate themselves in the market, cultivate strong customer relationships, and ultimately enhance their reputation and foster business growth.

Unleashing project value through digitisation

Organisations face impacts from rising costs and resource scarcity in infrastructure. Through project delivery, digitisation can help navigate cost, risk, and productivity challenges. Voeu has thoughts on how digitisation can unlock value.

Project delivery follows a natural value cycle. It includes cost management, price estimation, project control, and reporting. This cycle works best when visible real-time data is combined with integration between the process steps, enabling a seamless flow of information to enhance effective project delivery.

To achieve organisational best practices, it is essential to establish an integrated system that incorporates all steps into a homogeneous enterprise-wide system. This system should require minimal or no intervention for its operation. Such a system can be realised when systems are based on the same data framework and are automatically shared across functions. This eliminates repetition and reduces reworking costs.

Improving project outcomes through digitisation

All the elements of digitisation can unlock value by improving project outcomes through improved efficiency, accurate data collection, enhanced collaboration, real-time monitoring, and reduced administrative burden. By leveraging digital tools, project managers can achieve better project outcomes and ensure their projects align with project goals.

Less than 20 per cent of organisations have an effective system to unlock a project’s maximum value. This usually results in inefficiencies and cost overruns.

A basic example of digitisation involves replacing paper timesheets with electronic forms. This can help to reduce the time and errors associated with manual data entry, leading to more accurate project tracking.

The benefits of digitisation

The benefits of adopting digital tools in project delivery are clear. Digitisation can improve efficiency, accuracy, collaboration, and real-time monitoring, leading to better project outcomes that align with project goals.

Digitisation presents an opportunity to streamline the project delivery process along the value continuum. Although the water sector is advanced in product and engineering technologies, there is still room for improvement in utilising digitisation to enhance the management of project costs, risks, and productivity management.

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