Water companies face fines for poor customer service

Water companies can be fined up to 10% of their turnover for poor customer service, as new powers granted to Ofwat aim to improve industry standards and accountability

Water companies in England and Wales now face fines of up to 10% of their turnover for poor customer service, following new regulations by Ofwat.

The change aims to address declining customer satisfaction levels, as highlighted in Ofwat’s recent report.

Ofwat Chief Executive Officer David Black emphasised the importance of customer welfare and warned of penalties for non-compliance.

David Black said: “We expect this new licence condition to deliver real improvements in customer service across the sector. It is in the companies’ interests to put customers at the heart of their business and provide levels of service that increase customer satisfaction.”

Environment Secretary Steve Barclay supported the move, stating it was part of broader government efforts to enhance consumer protection.

The Consumer Council for Water (CCW) also welcomed the initiative, emphasising the need for improved service standards within the industry.

Mike Keil, Chief Executive of the CCW, said: “Every water company should provide excellent customer service but too often through our research and the complaints we handle we see people being badly let down, particularly by poor communication.

“A complete change in culture is needed in some companies if we’re to improve people’s experiences and repair fractured trust and the new customer licence condition can help to focus minds.”

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