Yarra Valley Water (YVW) is the largest of Melbourne’s three water retailers that provides water supply and sanitation services to over 1.7 million people and over 50,000 businesses in the northern and eastern suburbs of Melbourne. Bulk water is supplied by Melbourne Water harvested from protected mountain catchments and most of the sewage is transferred to Melbourne Water's Eastern or Western treatment plants. The balance is treated at YVW’s nine regional plants, several of which produce recycled water for use in new homes or for the irrigation of sports fields or open space. YVW covers about 4,000 square kilometres, maintaining over 9,000 kms of water mains and over 9,000 kms of sewer mains. Mitcham-based YVW, which employs around 550 people, is overseen by an independent Board of Directors appointed by the State Government of Victoria.
Australia has one of the highest uptakes of digital communication channels in the world, with the adoption of the Web and mobile devices as a common and ever expected method of communication between customers and their service suppliers.
Surveys have shown that for most enquiries and actions related to their services, customers preferred using Mobile or Web-based channels over phone or face-to-face interaction, with only the most critical issues requiring a direct connection with their supplier.
Water authorities in Australia have realized that customer expectations have changed and to improve customer experience, communication channels have to be available at all times and via the most convenient method. Customers expect to be able to use the Internet and mobile devices to get information and make transactions.
The customer self-service project evolved from a need to modernize and improve the customer service experience.
YVW initiated the project to improve its customer services by providing a fleexible, accessible, convenient portal that would work with mobile and desktop devices. One of the key goals was to allow customers to manage their own information, pay their bills, arrange to move in/out of properties and self serve many other functions from wherever they were, at their convenience.
The need was to provide customers better access to information, ensure ease of use, convenience and fast response
YVW needed to:
- implement self-service capabilities with straight through processing to reduce manual input of data
- Improve customer experience by providing a real-time and “always open” self-serve channel
- Offer self service for the most common tasks to provide a more convenient and efficient service channel for customers
Wipro was chosen as the lead partner for delivering this major digital strategy initiative.
Wipro leveraged its vast functional expertise and understanding of self-service processes to deliver a solution that met all of YVW’s requirements.
The delivered solution consisted of:
- A self-service portal that caters to desktop, mobile and tablet devices across multiple browsers.
- More than 20 key YVW business functions made available directly to customers (including payments, applying extensions, concessions, submitting meter reading and moving requests etc.)
Wipro was awarded this program against stiff competition from multinationals and local competitors. Among the reasons for Wipro’s success were:
Wipro’s unique proposal to provide a bespoke solution that exactly matched YVW’s vision for the system
- Understanding of client’s requirements and providing clear mapping between requirements and proposed solution
- Demonstrable excellence in the areas of portal, security and Oracle fusion integration services
- Robust and proven program and change management approach
The entire journey happened over 13 months from requirements elicitation to product launch.