Welsh Water is implementing a geographic information system (GIS) to improve asset management, customer service, business performance and regulatory compliance.
A GIS typically enables the integration, storage, analysis and sharing of geographically-referenced information. Similar technology is being used by Sutton and East Surrey Water and Durham County Council to boost the efficiency of a range of transport services.
Welsh Water's geographic information system, which will be supplied by ESRI UK, forms part of the organisation's IT Enabled Change programme to create an integrated IT environment.
"ESRI was chosen as a market leader in GIS and as lead supplier of software and services to the UK utilities sector in a competitive tender process run by Capgemini," said Fraser Nairn, head of IT at Welsh Water.
The geographic information system will work within the water company's IT environment and help share information throughout the organisation and with third parties.
Nairn said the GIS will integrate with current systems using web services deployed in a service oriented architecture.
The GIS will help Welsh Water with maintenance scheduling under the Traffic Management Act and the Streetworks Acts, its Ofwat five year performance reporting period, and the Drinking Water Inspectorate's (DWI) risk assessment regulatory requirements.
Nairn said ESRI's ArcGIS Sever will enable GIS intelligence to be embedded into Welsh Water's business systems and deliver GIS services for all employees.
These services will include an internal geographic information system for company-wide access to information, including call centre operators, an external GIS for third-party access including a "dial before you dig" service for other partner utility companies, and a mobile GIS application for field data capture.