How are we improving our business?

Achieving efficiencies

In 2011–12, we looked at how we could operate more efficiently to help keep prices below inflation.

IPART has set us an efficiency target of $173 million in operating efficiencies over the next four years. We also have a target of $143 million in capital efficiencies.

We will achieve these efficiencies through better planning, procurement, delivery and business improvement projects.

Some improvements we have already made include:

  • working with the private sector to develop new contracts which will save us about $7 million a year

  • focusing on more routine infrastructure renewal work

  • establishing a pool of money from existing efficiency savings for new projects that deliver future efficiencies and improvements

  • renegotiating our electricity supply contract so we can buy energy when prices are low

  • working our assets much harder and longer to get the best use out of them before they are renewed

  • getting the private sector to provide mechanical and electrical services

  • introducing navigation systems in vehicles to reduce travel time and improve work scheduling

  • developing a new model in our operations and maintenance areas to balance the workload across the workforce.

Image of Sydney Water staff looking at plans

We will achieve $173 million in operating efficiencies over the next four years through better procurement, planning, delivery and business improvement projects.

Staff find efficiencies in daily work

Sydney Water staff are committed to finding ways to save money and operate as a commercial and competitive organisation.

At Rouse Hill Water Recycling Plant, we are saving about $66,000 a year, thanks to the work of Production Officer Sally Rewell.

‘We add a number of chemicals to different wastewater processes to meet our Environment Project Licence and the Recycled Water Guidelines,’ said Sally.

Sally thought that by reducing or eliminating one of these chemicals, sodium hydroxide, we could operate the plant more efficiently without any impacts.

‘In September 2011, we held a trial to see what would happen if we stopped using sodium hydroxide altogether. My theory was correct, so we have now stopped using this chemical without any impact to the plant and we have also saved a lot of money in the process,’ she said.

Image of a Sydney Water staff member in the laboratory

Production Officer Sally Rewell saves $66,000 a year by changing how we use chemicals during wastewater treatment.