5 Signs Your Water District Should Outsource Water Billing

Water billing tasks can be a major strain on resources for local water districts. Fortunately, there are third-party water billing providers that can help. In this article, we cover the signs that tell you it’s time to start looking for an outsourced water billing provider.

Sign #1: Water billing operations are inefficient.

Many small and rural water districts still run highly manual water billing processes. Manual billing can add up to hundreds of hours of added work for your team each month.

Water billing might sound straightforward, but it requires attention to detail. Processing hundreds or thousands of water bills manually can lead to mistakes, especially when you are pressed for time.

Unfortunately, these mistakes can lead to even more time spent problem-solving. This leads to the next sign that it may be time to outsource water billing.

Sign #2: Calls to customer service are increasing.

Manual billing processes lead to mistakes. Mistakes lead to inaccurate bills. Inaccurate bills lead to customer disputing the bill. To do that, they call your customer service line.

If you notice calls to your customer service line going up, it’s another sign that something is wrong with your water billing process. Billing disputes can take a lot of time to rectify. During that time, you won’t be receiving any form of payment, which leads to the next sign.

Sign #3: Water bill recovery rates are going down.

Nobody likes to a pay a bill, especially if it’s a bill the customer believes isn’t correct. When customers receive an inaccurate bill, they will dispute the bill with customer service. Then it takes time to rectify the issue and generate and send a corrected bill that the customer finally pays. That leads to recovery rates going down.

If your water district is struggling with cost recovery or delinquent water bills, it’s a sign that something is wrong with your water billing process.

Sign #4: You lack digital tools for residents and your team.

In today’s digital world, residents expect a simple and seamless experience. They expect to be able to access the tools and information they need as quickly and easily as possible.

If your water district is still sending bills by mail, you’re making water bills more frustrating and time-consuming to pay for your customers. That means they won’t pay on time. If you lack a digital presence, it’s time to start looking for an outsourced water billing provider that can help you get there.

Sign #5: Your team lacks time to focus on critical tasks.

Your team is responsible for sourcing, treating and distributing potable water to customers in your service area. Water billing tasks risk either taking time away from these critical functions or overworking your team.

The Benefits of Outsourcing Water Billing

If your water district is experiencing any of the problems above, partnering with an outsourced water billing provider can be a wise choice. Here are some benefits of outsourcing water billing tasks to the right provider.

  • Streamlined Operations: From system design to bill generation, the right water billing provider can help your water district optimize your billing system, modernize water billing processes and even take water billing tasks off your plate entirely.
  • Better Recovery Rates: The right water billing provider ensures all water bills are as easy to pay as possible. They ensure every bill is accurate and defensible, sent out at a predictable cadence and offered with plenty of payment options.
  • Access to Digital Tools: Working with an outsourced water billing provider will help you offer digital tools to your residents. This gives them control over viewing and paying their bill along with access to usage metrics and previous bills to better conserve water and budget accordingly.
  • Enhanced Analytics: The right provider will help your team access better utility analytics usually through an analytics dashboard. This gives your team an in-depth view into usage and billing metrics, and it also allows your outsourced provider to make recommendations on how your water district can recover even more costs.
  • More Time to Focus on Critical Tasks: Taking water billing tasks off your team’s plate gives them time back in their day to handle these critical tasks properly.

Conclusion: Outsource with the Right Utility Billing Provider

If your water district is looking to outsource water billing tasks, it’s important to note you won’t see all these benefits unless you work with the right kind of provider. It’s important to go beyond the traditional read, bill, collect firms, and work with true utility billing experts who can help you at every step of the billing process.

A firm like Synergy can handle all aspects of your water billing system. Our team can help your team save time and recover more costs from ensuring accurate meter reads to bill generation and collection.

Looking for an outsourced water billing provider? Get in touch with Synergy. We’re experts in water billing, and we’re here to help your district succeed.