Striving for Excellence
Firmly Committed to
Providing Customer-oriented Service
Water Supplies Department

Exemplary Services@Gov
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Enhancement of Water Quality and Conservation Tops Its Agenda

Facing the growing population and ever-increasing expectation of the public on the quality of water supply services, the Water Supplies Department (WSD) continues to provide customer-oriented services. Mr. MA Lee-tak, JP, Director of Water Supplies, said, "We engage our customers in a number of forums to understand how they perceive our performance and what they expect of us. We will do our best to enhance the quality of service through practical means."

Since the launching of the performance pledge scheme in 1993, the WSD has enhanced the targets 28 times and added 21 new items. Mr. David CHAU, Assistant Director, said, "It is our objective to satisfy the 7 million Hong Kong people's needs for the provision of water supply services, focusing on quality, quantity and customer services.

Water is Safe for Consumption

Mr. CHAU said, "The fresh water provided by the Water Supplies Department is safe for direct drinking." He pointed out that Hong Kong's water treatment technologies were comparable to those of advanced countries and the WSD's quality management system governing the provision of water supply services was ISO 9001:2000 certified. The quality of fresh water in Hong Kong fully complies with the World Health Organization's Guidelines for Drinking-water Quality. Water is therefore safe for direct drinking if the consumers' own buildings' plumbing systems are properly maintained. To ensure that consumers can enjoy good quality of water at the taps, the WSD launched the Quality Water Recognition Scheme for Buildings in July 2002 to encourage owners, owners' corporations and property management companies to regularly maintain the plumbing systems of their buildings. The scheme has been a huge success and so far more than one million registered consumers of the WSD have joined it.

Environmental Protection is an On-going Job

To achieve sustainable use of water resources, the WSD has formulated a Total Water Management (TWM) Strategy. A Water Efficiency Labelling Scheme (WELS) will be launched to help consumers choose water-saving devices. The voluntary WELS aims to reduce household water consumption and enhance public knowledge of water conservation. WSD staff are proactively exploring new water resources, including an important initiative of using the less costly recycled water for non-drinking purposes.

Quality Services are Duly Recognised

The WSD collects public views through various channels so as to formulate measures for enhancing the quality of service. After the launch of the Quality Water Recognition Scheme for Buildings, Replacement and Rehabilitation of Water Mains Programme and Replacement of Water Meters Programme, customers are much more satisfied with the fresh water quality and water supply services. Without additional manpower, the WSD has been able to deal with the increasing number of customers and increase the customer satisfaction rate. This is indeed a remarkable achievement.

Firmly Committed to Providing Customer-oriented Service
Putting Performance Pledges First

The Water Supplies Department (WSD) strives to fulfill its customer-oriented performance pledges. To make sure that quality water supply services are provided for the public, the WSD has established various channels of communication and conducts regular service quality reviews to translate the opinions expressed by customers and staff into targets for service enhancement.

The WSD collects opinions on its water supply strategies and services through the Advisory Committee on the Quality of Water Supplies, territory-wide customer surveys carried out every two to three years, regular Customer Liaison Group meetings, and 24-hour customer telephone enquiry hotlines, etc. The department also enhances public awareness of water conservation through publicity in media, school education and environmental competitions, resulting in continuous improvements in water quality and customer services.

Honouring the Pledge on "Customer-oriented" Service

Based on the public enquiries received by the telephone hotline centre, water mains bursts is the subject with which most people is concerned. The WSD has in response set up time targets for isolation of burst mains and water supply resumption. Working diligently to meet the demanding targets, WSD staff succeed in minimising the impact of mains bursts on road traffic and the inconvenience to affected customers. To ensure that customers can enjoy good quality water at the taps, the WSD launched the Quality Water Recognition Scheme for Buildings in July 2002 to encourage property owners, owners' corporations and building management agents to regularly maintain their fresh water plumbing systems.

Happy Staff, Satisfied Customers

The WSD won the Silver Award in the Community Relations category at the Eighth China Golden Awards for Excellence in Public Relations. The award speaks for itself the wide recognition of the quality services provided by the WSD. "We focus on doing the right things, not just finishing our work according to rules," stressed Mr. David CHAU, Assistant Director of the WSD. The WSD considers that staff efficiency is crucial, and the policy adopted should also be cost-effective. In view of the increasingly diversified demands for water supply services and the limited manpower available, the department has, on one hand, relieved the workload of staff through outsourcing, and has, on the other hand, made arrangements for its staff to receive training, obtain recognised qualifications, and join overseas study visits to help increase efficiency of work. To boost staff morale, a Staff Suggestion Scheme and a Best Service Award based on customers' ratings have been put in place. Apart from cash awards, the winners are commended in the departmental publication "Droplet" as they live up to the department's motto of "happy staff, satisfied customers".

Mr. MA Lee-tak, JP, Director of Water Supplies, emphasises the importance of engaging the customers and that the WSD enhances the service quality through practical means.
The WSD management not only practises the concept of providing customer-oriented services, but also actively boosts the staff's morale. From left to right: Mr. SUEN Kwok-keung, Senior Engineer, Mr. Roger LAM, Chief Engineer, Mr. David CHAU, Assistant Director.
The WSD has adopted the most advanced and reliable water treatment technologies and the water quality fully complies with the World Health Organization's Guidelines for Drinking-water Quality.
A territory-wide Replacement and Rehabilitation of Water Mains Programme has been launched to resolve the problem of aged water mains.
Members of the public are able to enquire at the WSD's Customer Enquiry Centre. Staff at the centre provide prompt responses and collect public views for use in future reviews.
The WSD inspects water mains regularly to ensure that fresh water quality is up to standard.
Mr. David CHAU, Assistant Director of the WSD, stresses that staff are trained to maintain a high level of efficiency and standard.
The WSD's service values are: customer satisfaction, reliability, environmental awareness, dedication, improvement and teamwork.