Asset Management 

This capacity development program, led by IAWD, was initiated in order to raise awareness for and improve the performance of asset management (AM) practices in the water supply and sanitation sector in Southeast Europe. The project was organized around a newly established asset management services regional hub located in Belgrade, Serbia. Activities started in March 2014 and finished in September 2015.

IAWD hired Hydro-Comp Enterprises from Cyprus to design and implement this project. Together, they selected a group of 17 interested water supply and sanitation utilities from Bosnia and Herzegovina, FYR Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia to participate in the project. These utilities ranged in size and complexity from 11,000 to 225,000 served persons.

The project team developed a work plan, conducted an initial analysis of the 17 utilities, launched the asset management hub at Belgrade Waterworks and Sewerage, procured requisite hardware and set up a WebGIS and CRM application to allow utilities fast and easy access to their network data, as well as to facilitate reporting and communication between them. Upon completion of these preparatory steps, the AM team gathered utility staff at an initial meeting held at the hub in April 2014.

Subsequently, the AM hub held four workshops between June 2014 and September 2015, bringing all participating utilities together for a sequence of activities. Hydro-Comp started by raising data for their utility assessment through a questionnaire, which touched upon issues such as network data availability, the existence of GIS or CAD systems, and operations in zoning, bulk metering and leakage control. Based on the status quo, the hub team classified the utilities into three groups for tailored further activities. For each utility, expected performance improvements resulting from activities to address technical and commercial issues were calculated. The hub team then presented the assessment reports to the utilities during on-site visits. Based on these assessments, GIS Data Evaluation Reports were developed for eight utilities, while existing data allowed the elaboration of more detailed Network Data Validation Reports for four utilities. Additionally, three of the most advanced utilities carried out a Commercial Data Evaluation (CDE) with the hub’s assistance. It proved impossible to report Non-Revenue/Unaccounted for Water (NRW/UFW) in participating utilities due to a lack of CDE and bulk metering. Results of the project were disseminated through a periodic newsletter and at several regional conferences.

Due to a lack of network data, existing efforts in leakage detection and control have very limited effect, and some of the participating utilities do not seem to appreciate sufficiently the importance of network zoning. Utilities that participated in the CDE effort reported that it had a strong positive influence on their future work, with good coordination within utilities being essential for collecting requisite data.