Furthering resilience 

Reliable water and wastewater services and the financial, corporate and operational systems that support them

Resilience matters because it matters to customers. And the resilience that matters is the one that customers want and need now and in the future. That means that for Ofwat, resilience is in the round.

Resilience in the round means having financial, corporate and operational resilience. It means having the right skills, the right leadership, the right structure and the right systems – as well as having the robust infrastructure in the right place. It means looking after what we already have, finding smart solutions to meet future needs, and being able to recover quickly when problems occur.

Resilience has always been important to us and to the companies we regulate 

Resilience has always been important to us and to the companies we regulate. For example, as a result of our decisions at the 2014 price review a number of infrastructure schemes are underway by companies which will provide more resilience and better outcomes for customers.

In the Water Act 2014 we were given a new primary duty to 'further the resilience objective'. We set up a Resilience Task and Finish Group in 2015 to consider several questions related to what resilience means for the wider water sector. Following the Group’s report we published ‘Towards resilience: how we will embed resilience in our work’.

We have built on this work in the past year. For example, through our monitoring financial resilience report, we have considered the level of companies’ financial resilience. And the resilience-related proposals in our consultation on the outcomes framework for PR19 are part of our comprehensive approach to embedding resilience in the next price review.

We want to encourage the sector to go further on resilience

Resilience is embedded across our programmes of work and informs our thinking in a wide range of areas.

Over the coming months, we will be focusing on challenging companies on their current approach to resilience and how they are improving their assessment of, and response to, the increasing risks on corporate, financial and operational resilience. We are holding a cross-sector event on resilience in May to bring together thinking from across the community.

Following on from this we will set out details of our expectations of companies' plans at the next price review in our methodology. On resilience, we will expect companies to consider resilience in the round, and create smart solutions that meet customers’ needs and provide the best value.

We will also be looking closely at companies’ current financial and service resilience once they have published their annual performance reports.

Better resilience will improve customers' experience

Better corporate, financial and operational resilience will mean the sector can

· withstand problems that would otherwise reduce the service customers receive

· respond to, and recover more quickly from, problems that occur

This will help improve customers' experience.

How you can get the latest information

You can get the latest information on our performance in our annual report and accounts.

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