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You are here : At Home > Retailers > Knowledge hub > Operational terms

 

Understanding operational terms 

As we all settle into the new water market, we thought it might be useful to explain each of the sections within the Operational Terms.

We have also included some completed wholesale forms in connection with each of the relevant Operational Terms, for your reference.

We have highlighted the areas where information must be given and this information is required to be complete and correct. If you don't complete these areas, your form will be rejected and sent back to you for completion and resubmission.

If you can't find what you need please contact us.

  • B - Metering
    Section Description
     

    Meter installation, upgrade, location change and survey charges

    For all metering activity (installation, upgrade or location change), our Wholesale Tariff Document sets out two charges which will be applicable to the job;

    • the cost for an initial technician survey (section XX) ; and

    • the cost of metering activity itself (section XX).

    There may be certain circumstances where we may be able to complete the work without the need for a separate survey and where we are able to do this you will not be charged separately for the survey itself. However, it is important you are aware that a survey fee may apply in addition to the cost of the metering activity itself, as set out below.

    Survey Charges

    • For installations of meters under 40mm (not upgrade or location change), we will do our best to fit the meter on the first visit, without the need for a separate chargeable survey. In cases where this is not possible a survey fee will be payable.

    • In ALL cases where we are being asked to install 40mm meter size or above we will carry out a chargeable survey initial visit.

    • In ALL cases where we are being asked to upgrade or move the location of an existing meter we will carry out a chargeable survey initial visit.

    Following completion of a job where a survey has not been required, your invoice will reflect the savings.

    B1

    Installation of a meter performed by the Wholesaler - Chargeable

    Please use this process when you wish to request us to meter an unmetered customer premises. This will often result in us conducting a survey prior to raising the work to be completed. The form provides guidance and you can find the associated charges within the Wholesale Tariff.

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. B/01 Form

    B3

    Meter accuracy test performed by the Wholesaler – Possibly Chargeable

    Please use this process when you wish us to test the accuracy of an existing meter. This will result in us replacing the existing meter onsite and sending the meter away for testing. Should we identify that there is no accuracy problem with that meter this may become a chargeable activity, and the cost of which is within the Wholesale Tariff Document. This includes the exchange of the existing meter in additional to the testing costs. If we have carried out a meter accuracy test on this meter within the last 3 months we will provide you with those findings. If you still wish us to carry out another test this will automatically be chargeable.

    Please see our Wholesale Tariff

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. B/01 Form

    B5

    Repair or replacement of a faulty meter performed by the Wholesaler – Possibly Chargeable

    If we identify that one of our meters is faulty, we will replace that meter. If you identify that a meter is faulty please use this process to inform us using the relevant form and we will arrange a survey visit and subsequent job should the meter need replacing. This will take place within 22 days of that initial contact.

    Please see our Wholesale Tariff

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. B/01 Form

    B7

    Retailer requested change to size, model or location of meter performed by the Wholesaler (other than a replacement following a fault) - Chargeable

    This process should be followed if you wish us to survey the possibility of changing the size, model or location of an existing meter. In most cases this would be a non standard job and therefore we would follow that initial visit with a quotation as per the Wholesale Tariff.

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. Form B/01

    B10

    Wholesaler requested installation of a meter or change to the size, model or location of meter performed by the Wholesaler (other than a replacement following a fault).

    Should we decide we want to make a change to our asset (a new meter or change to an existing meter or location) this process is followed to ensure we are providing you with prior notification of that work.

    B11

    Retailer request for Wholesaler to carry out a Meter Read for a Non-Market Meter (Sub-Meter) relating to a transfer or allocation of supply point

    This process is to be followed if you would like to arrange for us to attend site and carry out a meter reading of a non-market meter. For example, if a shop owner is moving out and his supply is shared with a flat above and that flat is on a sub meter, we would attend and read the sub meter to help you produce a final bill for the shop owner.

    Please see our Wholesale Tariff

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. B/03 Form

  • C - Confirmation and verification of supply arrangements
    Section Description
    C1

    Verification of meter details or meter supply arrangements - Chargeable

    Please follow this process when you want us to visit your customer’s premises to confirm the meter details and/or the supply arrangements. This is used often to identify joint or crossed supplies and/or confirm which premises existing meters serve.

    Please see our Wholesale Tariff

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. C/01 Form 

    C2

    Gap Sites identified by the Wholesaler

    When we identify or are informed of premises which are believed to be eligible to be in the NHH market, we would follow this process to attend site and verify the supply arrangements. We would then inform the customer in writing of the market status and that they now need to choose a Retailer. We would also inform the sewerage wholesaler.

    Should the NHH customer not choose it’s new Retailer within 22 business days, the Central Market Operator would allocate one to them.

    C3

    Application in respect of Gap Sites proposed by the retailer

    This process should be used when you come across and identify an eligible NHH customer who is not currently registered within the Central Market systems. Even if you do not wish to become that customer’s Retailer, we would ask that you still follow this process, please.

    Gap sites can be occupied or vacant.

    C4

    Missing Service Components identified by the Wholesaler or the Retailer

    Where we discover that a customer’s supply arrangement on site differs to what we hold on record, or you do, this is the process to follow. Examples would include additional or removed meters or connections. This may or may not result in us carrying out a survey visit at the customer premises to verify and update the Central Market systems.

    C5

    Deregistration of a Supply Point (including as a result of an error in registration or a change of circumstance) or removal of Service Components at the request of the Wholesaler

    This process applies where we identify that a supply point needs to be deregistered from the market. This is not relating to any physical disconnection, but more relating to a supply which has been incorrectly put into the market or the use of that supply has changed, or been demolished (i.e. from NHH to HH).

    C6

    Application in respect of Deregistration of a Supply Point (including as a result of an incorrect or erroneous Registration) or a change of circumstance) or removal of Service Component at the request of the Retailer

    This process applies where you identify that a supply point needs to be deregistered from the market. This is not relating to any physical disconnection, but more relating to a supply which has been incorrectly put into the market or the use of that supply has changed or been demolished (i.e. from NHH to HH). Please ensure that you provide evidence of the investigation you have carried out to validate the change in circumstances.

    C7

    Retailer requested amendment to VOA BA reference or UPRN at the Supply Point.

    This process relates to changes needed to third party references, mainly concerning a request to change an element of a supply address. Please always ensure that you have checked that the change appears on the land registry website and you have undertaken a full investigation yourselves before you request any formal change.

    Please provide all evidence of that investigation along with the relevant form.

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. C/04 Form

  • D - Planned activities and affected services
    Section Description
    D1

    Notification of capital works having an effect on Non-Household Customers – long-term planning

    We are planning to publish this information at least 3 months in advance of this work being initiated, via our website for you using the location postcode. This process covers a range of work types across our Water Service, including our capital works such as major new main laying schemes.

    Click the link to find details of our planned works.

    D2

    Short-term planned activities

    We are planning to publish this information at least 22 days in advance of this work being initiated, via our website for you using the location postcode. This process will be covering various planned work types such as but not limited to the laying of new mains, leak pipe replacement scheme, mains rehabilitation, maintenance work such as systematic flushing and cleaning and where an impact on your customer's supply cannot be avoided.

    Click the link to find details of our planned works.

    D3

    Reactive activities (planned in advance of commencement)

    We are planning to publish this information at least 48 hours in advance of this work being initiated, via our website for you using the location postcode. This process will be covering those work types that are reactive yet planned in advance, such as, but not limited to, the repair of leaks and bursts, and valve, ferrule or hydrant maintenance.

    Where we are able to identify individual properties likely to be impacted by our works, such as, meter installations, disconnections and communication pipe replacements, you will be informed via email, no less than 48 hours in advance.

    Click the link to find details of Work in Your Area.

  • E - Unplanned event and incidents
    Section Description
    E1

    Identification of Sensitive Customers

    Following the SEMD (Security and Emergency Measures Direction) we have published our table of sensitive customers on our website, which you can find here. We will follow the process as detailed within the Operational Terms

    E2

    Maintaining and implementing Wholesaler Public Health Related Site Specific Arrangements for managing events and incidents potentially affecting public health

    We will publish guidance on our website of any Public Health Related Site Specific Arrangements once we have some in operation and keep that information up to date, as per the market terms.

    E3

    Identifying and managing unplanned changes to the supply of Water Services and/or Sewerage Services.

    We will publish on our website details of any unplanned event which is impacting the supply of our Water Services 24 hours a day.  This information is updated every few hours (the confirmed time is noted on each update) during the course of the event.  You are also able to sign up here for text alerts, which follow the website updates provided by our Operational team.   This facility is available for unplanned events that affect a number of our household and non household properties.

    Where we are dealing with your customer directly in order to resolve a problem we may notify you directly. In many cases the problem will be resolved quickly and in these instances we will notify you at the earliest opportunity.
    Please do ensure you have read and understood Part E – Unplanned events and incidents of the Operational Terms.
    You are required as per that process to provide us with a 24 hour contact number to enable us to request your support in managing customer communications during an unplanned event.

    You are required to ensure that your NHH customers are made aware of our 24 hour Emergency Supply number, 0345 3572407, and the importance of reporting any interruptions or unplanned changes to their Water Supply. 

    E4

    Identifying and managing drinking water quality incidents

    We will publish on our website details of any unplanned event which is impacting the supply and/or quality of our Water Services 24 hours a day.  This information is updated every few hours (the confirmed time is noted on each update) during the course of the event.  You are also able to sign up here for text alerts, which follow the website updates provided by our Operational team.  This facility is available for unplanned events that affect a number of our household and non household properties.

    Where we are dealing with your customer directly in order to resolve a problem we may notify you directly. In many cases the problem will be resolved quickly and in these instances we will notify you at the earliest opportunity.
    Please do ensure you have read and understood Part E – Unplanned events and incidents of the Operational Terms.
    You are required as per that process to provide us with a 24 hour contact number for you to enable us to request your support in managing customer communications during an unplanned event.

    You are required to ensure that your NHH customers are made aware of our 24 hour Emergency Supply number, 0345 3572407, and the importance of reporting any interruptions or unplanned changes to their Water Supply.

    Should we need to issue notices to all customers as part of a larger event, you will be notified via your 24 hour standby contact number.

    E5

    Identifying and managing Sewer Flooding and Other Public Health risks such as pollution incidents or unconsented Trade Effluent discharges

    In accordance with the market codes, we will notify all retailers when issues have been raised by one of their customers in one of the categories above within 24 hours. No water, bursts, leaks, loss of pressure, water quality issues and/or concern and the investigation of actual or the risk of internal or external flooding.

    E6

    Managing droughts or dry weather

    We will publish and keep up to date on our website our long term Drought Plan for your information.

    E7

    Emergencies (i.e. events governed by the Security and Emergency Measures Directions)

    We maintain our plans in accordance with the SEMD (Security and Emergency Measures Direction) which include detailed arrangements for the provision of alternative water supplies in the event of disruption.

  • F - Monitoring, investigations, complaints and enquiries
    Section Description
    F1

    Unannounced and/or unplanned visits to Eligible Premises e.g. to conduct water sampling or to monitor compliance with the Water Fittings Regulations

    Under section 75 of the Water Act we exercise our statutory power to carry our visits to any eligible premises for monitoring purposes (including sampling and inspections) in respect of the Water Fittings Regulations.

    We will advise you via our portal or by email once we have attended any of your customer premises within 2 days of that visit.

    Please click the link for information on Water Fitting Regulations or our Water Quality information.

    F2

    Announced planned visits to Eligible Premises e.g. to monitor compliance with the Water Fittings Regulations

    Under section 75 of the Water Act we exercise our statutory power to carry our visits to any eligible premises for monitoring purposes (including sampling and inspections) in respect of the Water Fittings Regulations.

    We will advise you 2 days prior to that planned visit via our portal or by email. We will also send you copies of all correspondence that may be sent to your customer, to keep you informed.

    Please click the link for information on Water Fitting Regulations.

    F3

    Visits by the Wholesaler to Eligible Premises not covered by the other processes

    Under section 75 of the Water Act we exercise our statutory power to carry our visits to any eligible premises for monitoring purposes (including sampling and inspections) in respect of the Water Fittings Regulations. This covers any visit not already provided for under F1 and F2, and any other visit covered by the Operational Terms.

    Again, we will advise you 2 days prior to that planned visit via our portal or by email or telephone, either confirming the details or asking you to arrange that for us.

    Please click the link for information on Water Fitting Regulations or our Water Quality information.

    F4

    Non-Household Customer enquiries

    This section of the Operational Terms provides you with an opportunity to raise an enquiry to us about Water Services (including drinking water quality) where it does not naturally sit within any of the Operational Terms..

    If you have any other enquiry which does not sit within the Operational Terms you can email our Wholesale Operations Service Desk at wosd@affinitywater.co.uk or call us on 0345 350 3677.

    F5

    Non-Household Customer complaints

    This section enables you to raise a complaint on behalf of your customer and their dissatisfaction concerning our service. In accordance with your regulatory responsibilities concerning DG7 Written Complaints, we will initially confirm receipt and provide a full response within the following 8 business days as per the Operational Terms. However in most instances we will endeavour to provide you with the full response, including resolution dates and actions, within 5 business days or sooner where possible.

    F6

    Water Fittings Regulations enquiries and notifications

    Should you receive any enquiries from your customer with regards to the Water Fittings Regulations, and you are not able to respond yourselves, please use this avenue to obtain the answer from us. We will provide you with a full response within 10 business days (or send you a copy if your customer has contacted us directly).

    If your customer asks you to get our consent regarding a proposed installation of a water fitting please send it to us directly within 1 day of receipt.

    Please click the link for information on Water Fitting Regulations.

  • H - Allowances, assessment requests and incentive applications
    Section Description
    H1

    Application for an allowance and/or Volumetric Adjustment or Wholesaler notice of review and/or change of allowance

    You should follow this process where you want to claim, on behalf of your customer, for an allowance and/or volumetric adjustment in cases such as but not limited to, bursts or leaks, water used for fire fighting or the outcome of a confirmed faulty meter (see B3). This may or may not result in us carrying out a survey visit to your customer's premises.

    We would also use this process to inform you of our intention to review existing allowances and/or makes changes to existing allowances and possibly request information from you. It may or may not require us to carry out a survey visit to your customer’s premises.

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. H/01 Form

    H2

    Application for a Contribution Offer in respect of installing a meter at an Unmeasured or Assessed Service Component - Chargeable

    Where you have an unmetered customer premises, where metering has been deemed previously impractical, you would follow this process to seek our offer of a Contribution of costs, as per our Wholesale Tariff, to make practical and install a meter (if possible). This process will result in us visiting your customer's premises.

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. H/02 Form

    H3

    Review of charges at Unmeasured or Assessed Supply Points

    This is the process we would follow where a review and/or change of the current charges would be carried out. We undertake periodic reviews of where we have previously applied an Assessed tariff to ensure it still meets the set criteria.

    You would also follow this process where you have identified a change in circumstances, activity or tenancy in relation to unmetered supply points which have had Assessed tariff’s applied. An example of this would be the addition of catering facilities.

    Also where we have unmeasured charges being applied to a customer premises and you wish to make an application for Assessed charges to be applied. 

    This may or may not result in a visit to your customer's premises.

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. H/03 Form

    H4

    Wholesaler notice of change in Tariff applied to a Service Component

    We would follow this process to inform you of a change of tariff where we have, for example, identified changes in a customer’s usage profile.

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. H/04 Form

    H5

    Retailer application for change in Tariff applied to a Service Component

    You would follow this process to request a change to the customers existing Tariff, providing your reasons and any supporting documentation.

    H6 Application for payment of Gap Site incentive payment (Not currently being offered)
    H7 Application for payment of Vacant Premises incentive payment (Not currently being offered)
  • I - Disconnections
    Section Description
    I1

    Disconnection requested by the Retailer and performed by the Wholesaler in relation to Non-Household Customer non-payment – Chargeable

    In accordance with the Operational Terms and relevant process, this is the term you would follow should you wish to instruct us to temporarily disconnect your customer for non-payment to yourselves.

    This is a chargeable activity and the cost of this can be found within our Wholesale Tariff.

    You will be required to complete the relevant form which includes a signed declaration where you agree to the charge should the activity be ‘standard’, which in cases of temporary disconnection will be the norm. It is important that you familiarise yourself with the timescales within this particular term, especially those to request us to reconnect once you have received payment.

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. I/01 Form

    I3

    Disconnection performed by the Wholesaler for illegal use

    This process is used to disconnect any supplies that are found to be illegal either by tampering with a meter, theft by bypassing or making an unauthorised connection to a main. This process can be triggered by both parties and can result in either a temporary or permanent disconnection.

    I4

    Disconnection performed by the Wholesaler for breach of Water Fittings Regulations

    This process is similar to I3, and can also follow activity mentioned within F1, F2 and F3. It applies in an instance where there has been a breach of the Water Fittings Regulations.

    Please click the link for information on Fitting Regulations.

    I5

    Disconnection requested by the Non-Household Customer and performed by the Wholesaler – Chargeable

    Where your customer is carrying out refurbishment work to their premises or a building is being demolished, for example, this is the process to follow to request us to carry out either a temporary or permanent disconnection at the request of your customer.

    Again the cost of this is noted within our Wholesale Tariff, and the declaration on the relevant form confirms your acceptance. This may result in a visit and a non-standard quotation.

    Please ensure you provide us with the details of why a disconnection is being requested as we would not carry out without first validating the reason.

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. I/02 Form

    I7

    Gaining entry to an Eligible Premises for the purposes of Disconnection using the Wholesaler’s powers of entry at Retailer request

    This process sets out the steps we would both follow in order for us to use our powers of entry to make a survey or effect a disconnection, following failure to do so in line with I1, 3 and 4.

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. I/03 Form

    I8

    Reconnection requested by the Retailer and performed by the Wholesaler - Chargeable

    Following the temporary disconnection of a customer, at your request, this is the process you would follow to request for that customer to be reconnected. If we receive and accept this request from you before 3pm on a Business day we would endeavour to complete this activity that Business day. If it is received after 3pm we would endeavour to complete this work the following Business day.

    It is important that your customer is present when we attend.

    This is a chargeable activity and the cost of this can be found within our Wholesale Tariff.

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. I/04 Form

    I10

    Reconnection performed by the Wholesaler following rectification of a breach of Water Fittings Regulations

    Following the temporary disconnection of a customer, following the identification of a water fittings breach, once the breach has been confirmed as resolve this is the process you would follow to request for that customer to be reconnected. If we receive and accept this request from you before 3pm on a Business day we would endeavour to complete this activity that Business day. If it is received after 3pm we would endeavour to complete this work the following Business day.

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. I/04 Form

     I11

    Reconnection performed by the Wholesaler following a Disconnection requested by a Non-Household Customer - Chargeable

    You would follow this process to request the reconnection of your customer supply, following a previous disconnection, either temporary or permanent. In the event of a previous permanent disconnection it is likely that we would look to carry our survey visit prior to quoting you for the work. We would also look to carry our flushing and sampling of that supply to ensure it can be safety put back into commission. There is a chance that it cannot and we would then look to advise you to follow the new connections route.

    This is a chargeable activity and the cost of this can be found within our Wholesale Tariff.

    Please click the link to find a completed example of the form associated with this section of the operational terms. I/04 Form

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