KMT Water Case Study
Embracing Technology For Improved Water Service Delivery In Kenya
To transform the water service delivery into a functional, efficient, and effective market, KMT has been working with eight urban water companies and five rural water utilities to enhance better operational efficiency through product and process innovation; deepen better and improved utility and sector governance; accelerate adoption and uptake of financing instruments; and promote professionalization of rural water services.
Through these efforts, 103,971 new households have access to clean and safe drinking water.
Water utilities in Kenya lack hard evidence and data systems of their operations for effective management and decision-making. This deficiency contradicts the reporting on the progressive realization of the right to water for millions of people living in Kenya. As a result, poor quality of water services is rendered to the population at a high cost, while making the water utilities less economically efficient and operationally unsustainable in service provision.
Information Management Information Systems (IMIS) and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) remains a weak area for many water utilities. The adoption of such technologies will ensure transparency in operational functions and compliance to set organizational systems.
Over the last eight years, Kenya Markets Trust (KMT) has facilitated water services transformation agenda in Kenya working with key sector institutions such as the Water Services Regulatory Board (WASREB), Water Sector Trust Fund (WSTF), Water Services Providers Association (WASPA), as well as individual water service providers (WSPs).
In 2018, KMT in partnership with SNV Netherlands Development Organisation, conducted an audit of non-revenue water (NRW) (through Atkins consultant 2018) in nine urban water utilities. This audit exposed glaring gaps that existed in customer engagement and operations sections of the utilities. It is worth noting that, NRW is one of the operational sustainability indicators for water service providers (WSPs). A higher NRW means a WSP’s commercial and financial viability is low, posing a threat to its future existence and continuity. A low NRW on the other hand, indicates a good credit rating, strengthened and improved efficiency of the given WSP.
Journey to digitalization
In the recent years, data and digitization have proven to be critical game changers in services delivery across various industries. In fact, to ensure effective, economic and efficient service provision, decision making must be data-driven. Collection and analysis of operational data can be accurately done using various technological systems.
Impact of the technologies on service provision
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