Customers and Providers



Too often we forget that the customer – the user, the client – is the beginning of the service cycle instead of the end point. Practitioners tend to be unfamiliar with customers and tend to be particularly unskilled when worked with community and individuals. With the vital, ever-growing emphasis on community involvement in decision-making, clearly the customers must take a central position and become the focus of efforts.

Each of the topics includes the Objectives, the suggested Actions, and the Tools that may be useful in addressing the issues.

Click on blue ball to access topics:

Knowing Your Customer
  What information does the practitioner need to know?
  How does the practitioner get this information?
Building Awareness
  What should the practitioner do?
Responding to Demand
  How to assess demand?
Assessing Satisfaction
  How to improve customer satisfaction?


Services may be provided through a variety of ways, ranging from formal, conventional city utility agencies to non-formal, unconventional alternative providers; from large-scale citywide provision to individual self-provision. All have a useful role, and each should be encouraged and supported to provide services in face of escalating demands.

Information on each of the providers includes a brief Description, their customary Tasks and Scope, and their Strengths and Weaknesses. Examples are included when available.

 Click on blue ball to access topics:

Main Service Provider - Municipalities
SSIPs - Small Scale Independent Providers
Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and
Community-Based Organizations (CBOs)
PSP - Private Sector Participation

Selling Water from bicycle
Informal water vending is a primary way of reaching unserved areas.


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