Customer satisfaction reaches new high at nation's largest partnership
04/5/05 • Water
INDIANAPOLIS, April 5, 2005 - Satisfaction among Indianapolis Water customers now greatly exceeds the national average for U. S. utilities, according to an independent survey conducted for the City of Indianapolis' Department of Waterworks and Veolia Water Indianapolis LLC, operator of the nation's largest water partnership. With satisfaction levels increasing for two consecutive years, the survey found that 83 percent of all customers were either "totally satisfied" (35 percent) or "mostly satisfied" (48 percent) with service provided by Veolia Water Indianapolis, the operator of Indianapolis Water. The national average for utilities is 70 percent.
"This report is no accident," says Kathy Humphrey, Veolia Water Indianapolis vice president of customer and government relations. "The improvement in customer service has come through systematic review of processes and making changes that positively impact our customers. We've invested in technology and people, always reviewing our program through quality-assurance methodology."
Overall customer satisfaction was 73 percent in 2002, rose to 76 percent in 2003 and jumped to 83 percent in 2004. The improvement in "overall customer satisfaction" extended to satisfaction with different areas of performance - reliability and consistency of water supply and water service; the taste, odor and appearance of the tap water; the health and safety of the tap water; customer service and the information provided by the water company; and the value of the tap water for the price customers pay. Taste and odor complaints have dropped markedly since Veolia Water Indianapolis began managing the system, reducing complaints from 501 in 2001 (prior to company management) to just 26 in 2004.
"Over the past two years, we've made significant strides in tackling taste and odor issues, improving infrastructure and system reliability that resulted in more efficient production and fewer service interruptions, and automating a variety of customer and operational services," explains Tim Hewitt, president of Veolia Water Indianapolis. "We're very proud of this team effort and the report clearly reflects the work of every employee who contributed."
The customer satisfaction survey is conducted each year by an independent firm specializing in utility customer satisfaction. It is part of a larger, on-going program to measure and improve customer awareness and satisfaction. The survey consists of telephone interviews completed with random and representative sample of 749 residential customers. The results from the total sample are accurate within +/- 3.6 percentage points.
Veolia Water Indianapolis manages all operations, maintenance and customer service facets of the city's waterworks system. With a service area that encompasses parts of nine Central Indiana counties, Indianapolis Water serves approximately 800,000 people and employs more than 400 people. It includes four surface water treatment facilities with daily water production averaging 138 million gallons per day (MGD) and peak demand capacity in excess of 200 MGD. The city acquired the waterworks system from NiSource and Veolia Water Indianapolis, a subsidiary of Veolia Water North America, began managing the system on May 1, 2002.Company Information
Veolia Water North America is the leading provider of comprehensive water and wastewater services to municipal and industrial customers, providing services to approximately 14 million people in more than 600 communities. The company is part of Veolia Water, the No. 1 water company in the world serving more than 110 million customers. Veolia Water is the Water Division of Veolia Environment (NYSE:VE and Paris Bourse: VIE), the largest environmental services company in the world with more than 252,000 employees in more than 80 countries and annual revenues of more than $33.6 billion. Visit the North American web site at www.veoliawaterna.com
and the global web site at www.veoliawater.com
. Important Disclaimer
Veolia Environnement is a corporation listed on the NYSE and Euronext Paris. This press release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the provisions of the U. S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are based on management's current expectations or beliefs and are subject to a number of factors and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements. These factors and uncertainties include in particular risks related to the ability of Veolia Environnement to complete its divestiture transactions as a result of customary conditions precedent and closing adjustments, as well as the risks described in the documents Veolia Environnement has filed with the U. S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Veolia Environnement does not undertake, nor does it have, any obligation to provide updates or to revise any forward-looking statements. Investors and security holders may obtain a free copy of documents filed by Veolia Environnement with the U. S. Securities and Exchange Commission from Veolia Environnement.