Performance monitoring and benchmarking enables utilities assess their performance, and helps compare themselves with previous performance and with similar utilities within the PWWA and around the World.
It is expected that transparent and accurate information will bring attention to the utilities and to their investment potential. Specifically, it is expected that this report will help:
- assess the performance of PWWA utility-members and benchmark their performance against each other;
- impart learning on the institutional structure and drivers of utility performance, and in determining how this affects the way the PWWA utilities and their authorities design and implement water and wastewater projects and policies;
- increase the monitoring and evaluation capacity in utilities using the available data and benchmarks for performance in the Pacific region; and
- encourage development of investment projects based on objective information by PWWA utilities, their authorities and donors.
The PWWA and its members consider performance assessment and benchmarking as a key instrument in development and sustainment of water and sanitation services in the Pacific Island states and territories. Since 2009, with the first baseline data collection exercise, the PWWA members were able to assess their performance and conduct their own performance assessment and reporting.
In 2011, PWWA adopted the tools and instruments of the International Benchmarking Network for Urban Water and Sanitation Utilities (IBNET) of the World Bank.
IBNET consists of three major tools. The first is the IBNET data collection toolkit, which can be downloaded from the IBNET website at www.ib-net.org and which is essentially an Excel spreadsheet with a set of data to be completed and instructions as to which precise data to enter. The second tool is a database of water and sewerage utilities’ performance that is continuously updated. This database provides utilities and other sector stakeholders the opportunity to search for data in different formats and also allows for simple benchmarking of utility data. The benchmarking tool enables the utility to compare itself to other utilities that share similar characteristics (e.g. size, factors related to location, and management structure). A third tool provides data on participating agencies that can help organizations, interested in measuring utility performance, contact neighboring utilities as well as other organizations, and as such build local networks for performance assessment and benchmarking.
IBNET data collectors enter required performance data into a standardized Excel spreadsheet under the categories General, Service Area, Water Service, Sewerage Service, Financial, and Tariffs. The spreadsheet can be downloaded easily from the IBNET website. Macros in the spreadsheet automatically calculate more than 27 groups of quantitative indicators that characterize the utility’s performance with respect to water and wastewater coverage and quality, water consumption and production, cost recovery, operations, finance, technical efficiency, billings and collections, and capital investment. Following completion of data entry and submission of the spreadsheet to the IBNET program, the World Bank’s Water and Sanitation Program performs quality control on submitted data and then enters them into the IBNET database.
As per the PWWA’s request and memorandum of understanding, a special website was developed for PWWA utilities and is now available at www.pwwa.ws and directly at pwwa2.ib-net.org.
Separate tariff database tariffs.ib-net.org presents information on domestic tariffs, payments and structure of charges for water for domestic users.
In 2015, PWWA decided to include Gender Mainstreaming indicators as part of benchmarking data collection to gauge the overall numbers of females working in each utility.