Water and Wastewater Utility Management

Executive discussion


Utility management challenges include workforce issues, infrastructure renewal and replacement demands, financial planning and asset management issues and regulations, to name a few. AWWA offers several programs and resources to help utilities meet the challenges.


Utility Performance Benchmarking

Benchmarking allows water and wastewater utilities to compare their performance with others to identify areas for improvement.
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Effective Utility Management

Effective Utility Management is a process for water and wastewater utilities to identify and address their management needs.
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State of the Water Industry

Since 2004 AWWA has conducted our annual State of the Water Industry survey to identify and track significant challenges facing the water industry and to provide data and analyses to support water professionals as they develop strategies to address these issues.
Check out the latest report

UTILITY Management Standards

AWWA volunteers have produced a series of Standards and Guidebooks for water utility operation and management.  These ANSI-approved Standards and their accompanying explanatory guidebooks provide staff members at utilities of all sizes a cost effective approach to document and improve their management and operations.  In addition to continuous improvement in these areas, following the AWWA Utility Management Standards can enhance communication with boards, customers, regulators, and community stakeholders. 

Explore the Utility Management Standards

Utility Management Standards Overview (PDF 1.7 MB)


Water and Wastewater Rates

AWWA produces the most comprehensive summary of water and wastewater rates in the industry. In addition, AWWA provides guidance for utilities to establish equitable rates, fees, and charges.
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Utility Compensation Survey

AWWA conducts an annual compensation survey that provides data and analysis of water utility salary ranges and compensation practices.
Access the free reports:
2015 AWWA Compensation Survey: Small and Medium-sized Water and Wastewater Utilities

Assessing Affordability

A joint issue brief from the US Conference of Mayors, the American Water Works Association and the Water Environment Federation offers several alternative metrics for better gauging the affordability of US Environmental Protection Agency mandates. A companion Affordability Assessment Tool for Federal Water Mandates helps communities consider the many factors impacting affordability and fully understand the implications of the federal water mandates they face.
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Assisting Low-Income Customers

A new edition of Thinking Oustide the Bill gives an overview of tools proven for utilities to use in identifying and assisting their low-income customers. This quick reference developed exclusively for AWWA Member Utilities introduces utilities to alternative approaches to affordability issues, updates vital demographic and programmatic information, and includes references and resources.
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Water Sector Competency Model

AWWA in collaboration with the USEPA and WEF identified the occupation specific competencies required for workers in the Water Sector.  The results of those efforts were formatted into a competency model using the framework provided by the Employment and Training Administration. The resulting model for the Water Sector, which depicts the core competencies required for field staff and operators, will be a resource for workforce developers and educators.

Water Research Foundation's Competency Model Development and Application to Meet Water Utility Workforce Needs (pdf, 2013)

O*NET Summary Report for Water/Wastewater Engineers


Partnership for Safe Water

Optimizing water system operation is the goal of the Partnership for Safe Water. Program participants perform self-assessments of their water treatment plant and distribution system using proven tools to determine their optimization status.
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Cybersecurity Guidance

Cybersecurity is the top threat facing business and critical infrastructure in the United States, according to reports and testimony from the National Intelligence Agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Department of Homeland Security. AWWA's Water Utility Council has developed cybersecurity resources designed to provide actionable information for utility owner/operators based on their use of process control systems.
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Hypochlorite Assessment Model

This predictive modeling tool, available exclusively to AWWA utility members, provides guidance on the expected levels of perchlorate and chlorate in stored bulk hypochlorite solutions.
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Communications Tools

Public communication is critically important for all water systems and service providers. It serves as a way to help build goodwill, credibility and knowledge within the larger community. 
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The Water Utility Insider

AWWA’s exclusive biweekly e-newsletter for utility members. Learn about the work AWWA is accomplishing behind the scenes in Washington, D.C. on your behalf.
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