Brisbane Water uses billing and customer care platforms to help manage water reform


Ian Mathieson, CEO
for Australia &
New Zealand, DST
Brisbane, Australia — (METERING.COM) — June 3, 2008 – Brisbane Water, one of the largest water utilities in Australia serving close to one million consumers, has completed a range of initiatives which have allowed it to enjoy productivity benefits, meet the demands of legislative and drought issues, and convert its customers from water wasters to water savers.

The utility used DST International’s (DSTi) HiAffinity solution, a flexible billing and customer care product. For Brisbane Water the use of HiAffinity has allowed it to more efficiently re-engineer its tariff structures and bill its large customer base, whilst also encouraging them to use less water.

HiAffinity was implemented to establish a tiered charging for water consumption. Households are now billed at three different rates depending on their water consumption. As water usage increases a higher rate can be charged according to the usage tier.

Better water management was also achieved via the introduction of a water advice to advise ratepayers on their water consumption with comparison graphs and ratings, and suggested solutions for more efficient water use.

Further, to reflect recent changes in legislation and provide valuable water information to the rental market, the utility also developed a tenant advice notification to provide water consumption details to approximately 80,000 customers identified by the system as renters.

All this has helped convert Brisbane Water customers from water wasters to water savers in just two years. Customers who had little understanding of what drought meant two years ago have embedded world’s best practice water-saving behaviors into their daily lives. Brisbane’s water usage statistics equate to a third of the daily rate of consumers in North America, and below that of people living in advanced countries facing water deprivation issues.

DSTi’s CEO for Australia and New Zealand, Ian Mathieson, explained that HiAffinity and its Business Rules Engine (BRE) provided Brisbane Water staff and customers with access to a highly functional system with minimal need for additional software development.

“HiAffinity’s capabilities, together with the flexibility provided by the BRE, have put the power to introduce business process improvements directly into the hands of customer service staff. They can quickly and cost effectively initiate improvements that can be authorised and implemented within a day, without needing to involve specialist IT staff.

“HiAffinity has proved more than a billing solution – it has become an indispensable business tool for Brisbane Water, delivering time, cost and productivity savings as impressive as the water savings.”