American Water Works Association, APQC form alliance

The American Productivity & Quality Center (APQC) and the Denver-based American Water Works Association (AWWA) have teamed up to provide quality management tools and organizational improvement resources.

HOUSTON, Texas, Feb. 19, 2001— The American Productivity & Quality Center (APQC) and the Denver-based American Water Works Association (AWWA) have teamed up to provide quality management tools and organizational improvement resources to water and wastewater utilities throughout the United States.

This new alliance, which aims to bolster the benchmarking capabilities of more than 40 members of A WW A's QualServe Benchmarking Clearinghouse, will grant QualServe member organizations membership in APQC, a renowned leader in benchmarking. APQC membership offers access to publications, online reference libraries, training, conferences, best-practice research, and networking opportunities with organizations across numerous business sectors.

"AWW A is proud to provide water utilities the most comprehensive benchmarking program available," said AWW A Executive Director Jack Hoffbuhr. "Working with APQC ensures that water utilities can incorporate the best business practices the private sector has to offer."

Patrick Crotty, manager of quality program development at AWW A, and Faisal Amin, utility/oil and gas sector specialist at APQC, will lead efforts immediately to implement actions in accordance with the alliance, which was formally announced during the recent QualServe Benchmarking Workshop in Portland, Ore. QualServe members will be notified about newly available APQC services by March, and QualServe staff members will begin identifying specific opportunities for collaboration with APQC this month. Eventually QualServe members will be able to tap into a suite of services available electronically, workshops, training, benchmarking studies, and a database of performance indicators useful to all water and wastewater utilities.

"Together we are taking a significant step to help utilities and other water and wastewater organizations benefit from benchmarking and other quality improvement services that have proven successful in a variety of organizational settings," said APQC Chief Operating Officer Lisa Higgins.

Houston-based APQC boasts nearly 500 member organizations that include corporations in numerous industries, government agencies, education organizations, and some 40 electric and natural gas utilities. Spokespeople for the Louisvi1le Water Company, BHC Company, San Antonio Water System, and Irvine Ranch Water District-al1 APQC members-have voiced support for the AWWA/APQC alliance, and several individuals representing these organizations took part in alliance talks.

"Water utilities have been some of the best protectors of public health for years," said Hoffbuhr. "By incorporating effective techniques from other industries, water utilities can build upon their strong track record of public service."

American Productivity & Quality Center (APQC)
For more than 20 years APQC has helped business, government, and education organizations adapt to rapidly changing environments, build new and better ways to work and succeed in a competitive marketplace. APQC is a nonprofit organization and a recognized leader in benchmarking, knowledge management, and best-practice information. Learn more about APQC by visiting http://www.apqc.org or by calling 800-776-9676.

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