Queensland Urban Utilities Business Integration

Designing, developing and implementing a new business model for the QUU Development Services Group


  • Queensland, Australia


  • Queensland Urban Utilities

Project Status

  • Completed in 2014

Establishing a New Business Model

With the introduction of new legislation, the responsibility for development assessment and management of new water and wastewater connections was transferred from five local governments to Queensland Urban Utilities (QUU). The change resulted in a dramatic increase in QUU’s development application volumes; increasing from 600 applications to between 6,000 and 8,000 applications each year. Responsibility for management of the entire end-to-end process also transferred to QUU - from assessment through to design, construction and maintenance stages for all water and wastewater connections. This resulted in a significant impact on the business.

WSP designed, developed and implemented a new business model for the Development Services group, across all operational and organizational elements, to prepare the new business to ‘go-live’ on July 1, 2014. The business model also required sufficient flexibility to respond to legislative uncertainty and continued legislative change up until a few weeks from the ‘go-live’ date.

Creating the Operational Framework

 Works involved the design and development of the operational requirements for the business, underpinned by strong change management, stakeholder engagement and a customer focussed approach. The business model included:

  • a two-streamed customer service delivery model

  • team objectives, vision and values

  • organizational structure and resourcing plan

  • clearly defined roles, responsibilities and delegations

  • key performance indicators, reporting framework and Information and communications technology (ICT) based reporting

  • business process design, documentation and ongoing performance improvement framework

  • online workflow-based ICT customer lodgement portal and backend ICT management system for all services

  • cost-recovery requirements, including services pricing

  • supporting tools and collateral

Our team delivered the following:

  • Organization Design

  • Process Design

  • KPI Framework

  • Stakeholder Assessment

  • Change Management Support

  • Training

Increased Efficiency

On the ‘go-live’ date of July 1, 2014, Development Services was ready for business:

  • ICT system was successfully designed, implemented, operational and managing the new workflows

  • team expanded from approximately 20 to 40 staff, with new roles designed and recruitment complete, and a new leadership team in place to guide their teams

  • over 30 new business processes designed and documented, with staff trained in how to deliver them

  • board approved suite of KPIs in place to drive performance culture

  • supporting tools developed and implemented to support delivery

Results within the first 2 months of operation:

  • limited negative feedback from customers and industry (practically none) – meeting

  • stakeholder’s key requirements of ‘no impact on industry’ 

  • KPI stretch targets achieved

  • almost double the previous year’s applications lodged, processed and assessed by the team within an 8-week period

  • online customer lodgement portal operational and delivering improved access and service to customers.

WSP’s collaborative approach to developing the new business model involves significant stakeholder engagement and consultation. This promotes ownership by the organization and minimizes risks around implementation.