‘How To Drive Consumer Value’ – Suttons Tankers And Yorkshire Water

Suttons Tankers and Yorkshire Water recently hosted a webinar based on ‘How to Drive Consumer Value’. The webinar is available on demand via the Youtube link below with chapter dividers if you’d like to skip to a specific section

With contributions from industry experts from both businesses, the team discussed Yorkshire Water’s recent decision to outsource their sludge operation and the benefits this has brought. They cover off the various different stages of the implementation and the challenges they were faced with by having a contract go live during the midst of the global pandemic.


Chaired by Niki Roach, Co-Founder of AxiaOrigin and President of CIWEM, the webinar focuses on the real value that can be generated from working together as a partnership to achieve mutual benefits and increased efficiencies.


Structure of the webinar is as follows:


00:00 Introduction with Niki Roach, Tom Hall & Roger Parr

12:04 The commercial solution with Nigel Gilhooley

17:54 The TUPE transfer with Gavin Carlo

26:51 Safety as a core focus with Dave Ashton

34:32 Fleet investment with Mark Scott

39:56 Conclusion with Tom Hall & Roger Parr

45:58 Q&A


Both questions that were able to be answered live and those which have been answered after the webinar are listed below:


Q1) How difficult was it to implement the transfer Water contract – was it a complex process?


A1) It was complex but over recent years we have had plenty of experience. We have a multifunctional approach to implementation, and our cross functional team includes colleagues from operations, SSHEQ, technical/fleet engineering, HR, Fleet compliance and Systems. One of the keys to the success is those involved are responsible for their elements of their project from implementation into integration. This provides a vested interest for getting things right at the very beginning of the customer relationship.

The project team are involved in drafting the detail of the implementation plan using a bottom up approach and make a clear commitment at the start of the project in relation to their involvement, responsibility and an agreement of what success in their area (workstream) looks like. The team will meet regularly and discuss implementation status, challenges and risks.


Q2) You mentioned going live during the beginning of the COVID restrictions – how much did you need to amend your implementation plans?


A2) The Yorkshire Water project started in December 2019 so we had some months of preparation before COVID hit us. When COVID appeared in March we had to drastically consider and amend our approach to project management, operational and planning familiarisation and the engagement with transferring staff from Yorkshire Water. Project team meetings moved to virtual meetings, and we had to find creative ways to continue with developing our understanding of the Yorkshire Water operation. The biggest challenge was in relation to Yorkshire Water employee induction training. Usually this activity would be done face to face in small groups and take up to one day. The induction process is designed in a way to get the highest level of engagement and deliver a quality experience for transferring staff. The driver training team had to rethink the delivery of this training and instead use a combination of virtual and 1:1 training (with COVID measures in place). The other significant challenge was related to the on-boarding of the new planning team on the Yorkshire Water site. Due to COVID-19 half of the team was home based whilst the other half was office based. This was tremendously challenging for the team who consisted in most part of staff new to Suttons and Yorkshire Water.

The transition was certainly made more complex by COVID, but we learnt a lot, found new ways of doing things and actually some of that learning we will take forward, even out of a COVID world.



Q3) How does the contractual gain share mechanism work?


A3) The cost per cube (CM3) was negotiated contractually as part of the tender process. Suttons measure the actual cost compared to the contracted cost, and any savings are split between Yorkshire Water and Suttons. This runs for a full year and a statement showing the savings are circulated each period, and the benefits are paid at the end of each year.


Q4) How are you monitoring cradle to grave on carbon footprint for all aspects of the business YW and Suttons Particularly Vehicle old and new?


A4) Suttons Tankers are committed to using technology advancements to manage our environmental footprint. Our selection of new vehicles considers fuel consumption and emission levels, and we are actively investigating alternative fuel options for the future. Suttons is part of a Hydrogen fuel consortium and are feeding into a project to bring hydrogen powered HGVs to market quickly with an adequate infrastructure to support.


In terms of measurement, we currently use a CO2 factor and multiply this by the kilometres run by the fleet. The other measures we have on carbon footprint are percentage of loaded and empty miles, vehicle utilisation and on the Yorkshire Water contract this equates to trips per shift. Maximising these KPIs allows us to minimise the amount of trucks that need to be built for Suttons Tankers and reduces total miles run, and consequently emissions.


Q5) Is Bioremediation product of interest to Yorkshire Water and Suttons?


A5) Yes. It would be useful to see a summary of the product, as well as a proposition, to understand this in greater detail. Please send to bioresources@yorkshirewater.co.uk and then we can ensure the appropriate person can review and get in touch.

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