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  • by Karma Loveday

Ofwat issues eight customer support tips

Ofwat has called on water companies to consider eight changes to better support customers and to build meaningful, trusted relationships with them, in the final report of its #ListenCareShare campaign to understand Covid year experiences.

Its recommendations were:

  • increase visibility of support – customer awareness of  the support available from water companies is low.  Support needs to be clearly promoted and well signposted across different channels;

  • be proactive – look for those who are struggling, for example those who have missed payments. Contacting customers early is a way to avoid debt building up;

  • communicate in a way that people understand and that is empathetic – make  messaging consistent and simple, by using plain English and avoiding jargon;

  • accessing support – keep it simple and easy for those struggling with mental health issues who can find it difficult to ask for support with bills. Reducing practical hurdles, including the need to print out forms, is vital;

  • customer journey – tailor interactions, by asking customers receiving support how often they want to hear from the company ad check in with customers before support comes to an end;

  • form partnerships – work with others to provide support , including by directing customers to agencies who can help them manage their finances;

  • make better use of data – review data that is collected and use it to understand more about those who are receiving or missing out on support; and

  • share – tell others about what works, so all customers benefit.


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