How are we tracking?

Indicator: Average rating of the overall quality of service delivered, measured through customer surveys

We surveyed over 1,000 customers to find out how they would rate the overall quality of service we deliver. Customers rated us on a scale of zero (extremely poor) to 10 (excellent). The results showed that customers have a positive view of the overall quality of our service, with an average satisfaction rating of 7.5. This result reflects our commitment to maintaining quality services.

Table 6 – Average customer rating of overall service quality* 2008–12

Image of Table 6 – Average customer rating of overall service quality

*Data collected as part of the Customer Relationship Study.

Indicator: Total number of customer complaints

During 2011–12, our Contact Centre received more than 752,000 calls. Of these, 6,825 (or less than one per cent) were complaints.

Under our Operating Licence 2010–15, we define a complaint as ‘an expression of dissatisfaction made to Sydney Water, related to its products or services, or the complaints-handling process itself, where a response or resolution is explicitly or implicitly expected’.

The total number of complaints includes those made to the Energy and Water Ombudsman of NSW (EWON). In 2011–12, EWON received 702 complaints about us. If a customer is dissatisfied with our proposed solution or the action we take to resolve a complaint, they may contact EWON (, to independently review the complaint.

Table 7 – Total number of complaints (including to EWON) 2007–08 to 2011–12^

Image of Table 7 – Total number of complaints (including to EWON)

^All contacts regarding odours are now included as complaints as per the 2011–12 National Performance Framework: urban performance reporting indicators and definitions handbook. For comparative purposes, we have adjusted results reported from 2007–08 to 2010–11 using the same definition.

Indicator: Billing and account complaints (per 1,000 properties)

During 2011–12, we received 3,701 billing complaints (54% of total complaints), which equals two complaints for each 1,000 properties. This is a 14% increase from 2010–11.

Billing complaints generally relate to meter reading estimates or errors, payment details, water use and service charges.

About 80% of these complaints are because customers request us to revise their bill after they have done their own meter reading. This high percentage reflects improved recording of these complaints over the past 12 months, rather than meter-reading performance.

The number of changes we make to accounts because of incorrect reads is less than 0.06% of the 5.2 million reads we make each year.

Table 8 – Number of billing complaints per 1,000 properties 2007–08 to 2011–12

Image of Table 8 – Number of billing complaints per 1,000 properties