Date of publication: September 2018
Customer Stewardship: Infrastructure missing link was written by the Better Infrastructure Initiative's, Garry Bowditch and Gordon Noble.
Customer stewardship challenges stakeholders to find enduring answers in infrastructure via broader thinking. Infrastructure is an actively intimate part of our lives therefore quality of services and astute long-term investment decisions have never been more important.
The Better Infrastructure Initiative identified ten industry exemplars that share a vision for infrastructure’s future - in partnership with customers and stakeholders.
Embed customer stewardship in all major decisions
Federal, state and local government must address the missing link in their infrastructure governance – customer stewardship – towards enhanced focus and accountability to customers and function of markets.
Enable customers to always shape infrastructure
All public and private sector organisations must embrace and practice customer stewardship values and principles in their project selection and governance processes that enable customers to shape all aspects of the asset life cycle for infrastructure.
Reward customer stewardship practices
Investors as owners of infrastructure need to ensure the operators of infrastructure are given the latitude and motivation to use customer stewardship practices, including engaging with and maintaining high standards of customer trust and integrity of assets and services.
Motivate a reporting and transparency ethos
Asset recycling programs and other infrastructure divestment and investment processes need to embed a customer stewardship ethos of accountability, and mechanisms for reporting to ensure all decisions will accrete to customer outcomes and benefit the infrastructure system as a whole.
Better communicate genuine achievements
Owners and operators need to communicate their customer stewardship achievements, (using case studies, data with their stakeholders) to redress misconceptions and build trust and understanding
about quality of planning and management capabilities in preparing for the future.
Infrastructure may be complex but that is never a reason for tolerating under performance and insensitivity to customers.