Skip to main content


Buy Article:

$9.50 plus tax (Refund Policy)

Or sign up for a free trial

The Santa Clara Valley Water District (District) has taken up the challenge to move from a traditional, reactive water utility operations, to an operations and maintenance outfit that is planning strategically to prepare for many current and upcoming challenges. The challenges over the next five to ten years include; major construction at the District's three treatment plants while maintaining operation and delivery of treated water, the implementation of wholesale changes in treatment technology to meet drinking water regulations, the effects of aging infrastructure, burgeoning environmental compliance requirements to maintain operations and to perform routine and emergency facility repairs, and a current economic climate which calls for operating in an increasingly efficient manner.

The Water Utility Operations Division (Division) of the District operates 142 miles of raw and treated water transmission and distribution pipelines, 17 miles of canal, 8 miles of tunnels, 3 pump stations, 3 water treatment plants, and 1 treated water reservoir. The Division also supports the operation of 20 recharge facilities, 1 hydroelectric facility, and 10 dams/reservoirs.

Collectively, the Division has adopted a planning and implementation process which includes; strategic planning, annual business planning and organizational “tune-ups” and incorporating the principles of continuous quality improvement and efficiency planning.

Strategic Planning – The development of a three to five year strategic vision, with specific issues, goals and strategies to move from the present to the vision. This is described as sticking a stake in the ground out three to five years in the direction the organization is heading.

Annual Business Planning – Developing a work-plan for the Division for the upcoming year. The Annual Business Plan lays out the core business functions, strategic initiatives, performance measures and the budget plan for each unit within the Division.

Organizational Tune-ups – After developing the Division vision and laying out the strategies to achieve it, the Division examines the current organizational structure to ensure that it is the most effective structure to achieve the plan.

The Division is currently in the third year of this planning effort and the results to date are exciting. Some of the benefits already realized include:


Development, implementation and training on standard operating procedures across the Division

Establishment of a business unit with the Division

Completion of a Competitive Assessment study

Effective partnering with the District's retail customers
No Reference information available - sign in for access.
No Citation information available - sign in for access.
No Supplementary Data.
No Article Media
No Metrics

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2004-01-01

More about this publication?
  • Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is an archive of papers published in the proceedings of the annual Water Environment Federation® Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC® ) and specialty conferences held since the year 2000. These proceedings are not peer reviewed.

    A subscription to the Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation includes access to most papers presented at the annual WEF Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC) and other conferences held since 2000. Subscription access begins 12 months after the event and is valid for 12 months from month of purchase. A subscription to the Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is included in Water Environment Federation (WEF) membership.

    WEF Members: Sign in (right panel) with your IngentaConnect user name and password to receive complimentary access. Access begins 12 months after the conference or event
  • Subscribe to this Title
  • Membership Information
  • About WEF Proceedings
  • WEFTEC Conference Information
  • Learn about the many other WEF member benefits and join today
  • Ingenta Connect is not responsible for the content or availability of external websites
  • Access Key
  • Free content
  • Partial Free content
  • New content
  • Open access content
  • Partial Open access content
  • Subscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed content
  • Free trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more