Northgate to help Consumer Council for Water deliver on strategic aims

Northgate Information Solutions today announces a further success in the utilities sector with the signing of an agreement with the Consumer Council for Water (CCWater) to support the organisation in the effective management of ICT resources.

Launched in October 2005, CCWater is the statutory consumer body for water and sewerage services in England and Wales. Its aim is to become the leading consumer representation body through delivering an efficient and effective service.

In a contract worth £750,000 over three years, Northgate will provide CCWater with a fully-managed service that will see the company take ownership of, upgrade and support all CCWater’s ICT assets at a fixed cost.

CCWater will benefit from:

- the provision of a secure and stable infrastructure that enables employees across CCWater’s network of offices to access information when they need to;

- productivity gains through increased mobile working;

- a reduction in time spent on administration;

- expert support through a full helpdesk service;

- rapid implementation, enabling CCWater to operate independently of OFWAT’s ICT infrastructure by June 2006.

Andy Ross, Managing Director of Northgate Managed Services, said:

“We are delighted to be assisting the Consumer Council for Water at this important time in the organisation’s development. Ensuring that members of the public receive the best service from the water industry means enabling Council staff to spend less time on administration and paper-chasing and more time focusing on the consumer. This is our first substantial contract in the utilities sector in Britain, and we look forward to a successful partnership with CCWater going forwards.”

Tony Smith, CCWater Chief Executive, added:

“CCWater represents the interest of water consumers across England and Wales, and the way we manage our own resources is critical to the work that we do. The ability of users to connect remotely to systems from home or using mobile technology will address the constraints currently imposed on mobile workers and will help rebalance staff workloads. This is key to the strategic vision for CCWater’s future. This new partnership with Northgate will enable us to concentrate on our core role, safe in the knowledge that our current and future ICT needs are being met and with the certainty of a fixed cost.”

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For more information:

Fellows’ Associates:
Kathy Sutton 020 7849 3403 / 07966 890401
Naomi Stevenson 020 7849 3508 / 07966 890403

Notes to Editors:

1. Northgate Information Solutions is the leading provider of innovative software solutions and services designed to improve community well-being and promote community justice. Northgate’s task is to enhance public value through the intelligent use of people and technology, and to share in the economic and social benefits that this brings.

2. With divisional headquarters in Hemel Hempstead and Belfast, Northgate has 25 major offices across the UK and six international offices. Founded in 1969, the company has over 3,300 employees.

3. Northgate’s services to CCWater include: wide area network; local area network; desktop PCs and laptops; desktop printers; mobile computing; servers; anti-virus and security software; disaster recovery; internet access and email; office productivity software; and full helpdesk services providing maintenance and technical support.

4. Northgate is the number one provider of managed services to Northern Ireland Electricity, which is responsible for the distribution and supply of electricity to over three quarters of a million homes and businesses.

5. The Consumer Council for Water (CCWater) represents consumers in England and Wales, and took over from WaterVoice on 1 October 2005. CCWater is the statutory water consumer body, and operates as a non-departmental public body reporting to the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and the Welsh Assembly Government. At regional level, it is supported by nine regional committees in England and one for Wales.