The lack of capacity, both financially and in the workforce, in municipal departments remains a challenge, according to strategy, consulting, digital, technology and oper-ations solutions provider Accenture resources MD Melusi Maposa, who says that the private sector should be allowed to take part in utility projects.
“I’d like to see an increased uptake of As-A-Service models, as this allows utilities to leverage private capital to achieve service delivery outcomes by allowing private players to share in the risks and rewards related to [these] projects,” he adds.
Maposa explains that projects such as metering for both water and electricity, and water net-work operations, including infra-structure refurbishment (such as reservoirs and treatment works), all lend themselves to private–public partnership contracting models. While these models can be complex to execute, he says that they offer a key opportunity to jumpstart service delivery.
“We are very excited about the work we are doing with munici-pal utilities to drive better insight and efficiencies around capital project executions. We have helped drive increased expendi-ture, with very clear correlation to service delivery outcomes.”
Maposa adds that better lever- aging of analytics and As-A-Service delivery models – where service providers execute pro-cesses on behalf of customers – offer opportunities to plug skills and funding gaps while aligning with the objectives of utilities and their partners.
Accenture is a platinum spon-sor at the sixteenth edition of the annual African Utility Week conference and exhibition that will take place in Cape Town from May 17 to 19. Some 6 000 engineers, stakeholders and solution providers from around the globe will gather at the event, which will feature exhibitions from 250 technology and service providers to the energy and water sector in Africa, as well as hands-on demonstrations and Continuing Professional Development-accredited technical workshops. The event will also feature technical site visits and an industry awards gala dinner.