Reporting and Benchmarking


With amendments to the Water Supply (Safety and Reliability) Act in June 2014, a number of new reporting dates and requirements have been introduced.  There has been some confusion expressed by members due to the terminology used in the Act and we hope that this reference table will assist our members.

Most reports and plans must be made available for inspection and purchase but a number of documents must now be published online including Drinking Water Quality Management Plan Reports.  Through SWIM we aim to produce a public “Performance Report” based on the new KPIs from 2015 which should satisfy member requirements for web publication.  Templates will be developed in the coming months. The reference table is available below:

DEWS - Reminder of key due dates 2015 DEWS - Reminder of key due dates 2015 - Release Date 04-Dec-2014: - (265KB)


Reporting on performance is essential for water utilities, which are natural monopolies, to provide surety and transparency to consumers as well as to satisfy regulatory requirements and allow benchmarking and competition by comparison.

All service providers report to the Regulator and provide annual reports and Council reports. Reporting on specified water and performance indicators is also required under legislation by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Bureau of Meteorology and the National Water Accounting Framework.

In Queensland some larger Service Providers report through the National Performance Reporting framework (which is not available to smaller utilities).

A collective approach to reporting water performance indicators was commenced by qldwater in 2008 through the SWIM program.  The SWIM website can be accessed here.

Queensland Service Providers also need to submit a number of reports on regulatory management plans to State Agencies (e.g. Strategic Asset Management Plans, System Leakage Management Plans, Drought Management Plans, Total Water Cycle Management Plans, Drinking Water Quality Management Plans, Recycled Water Management Plans,Local Government Asset Management Plans). The rapid increase of often duplicative requirements and the associated costs of compliance for the industry led qldwater to advocate on behalf of the industry for streamlining and rationalisation of regulatory requirements.

On 6th August 2009, qldwater and LGAQ  convened a forum to discuss reporting requirements which was attended by representatives of 30 Service Providers along with representatives of the Department of Environment and Resource Management. The meeting highlighted many concerns about reporting from the industry including:

  • there was a contradiction between increasing State focus on water management but reduced collaboration and communication with SPs,
  • the cost of water reporting did not reflect the benefits gained,
  • new and revised reporting requirements had to be integrated and fit-for-purpose,
  • there was a strong and consistent call for streamlining reporting arrangements and for improved communication between DERM and all SPs to develop a transparent, outcomes-based approach to statutory reporting to strengthen the Queensland water industry.

In 2010 the DERM markedly increased communications with the industry which culminated in the development of a Memorandum of Agreement among DERM, LGAQ and qldwater with four initial projects, one of which was to investigate streamlining reporting of water industry reporting requirements. This significant new communication process between the industry and the Regulator is a strong indication of a growing collaboration in building the future of the urban water industry.

2012 /13 Annual Water and Sewerage Data Due Dates

All Water Service Providers in Queensland have been asked to collate and submit their annual 2012-13 water data report to SWIM. SWIM is now the main method for Queensland Water Service Providers to submit their annual water data to the ABS, BoM, Queensland Government and NPR. Last year more than 88% of councils reported data through SWIM, which is not only providing valuable information to the State and Federal Governments, but also back to you in the form of the benchmarking report and your individual comparative reports.

Every Water Service Provider in Queensland should have received information from qldwater in the past month regarding accessing and using the SWIM system to submit water data. Please contact qldwater at if you have any queries regarding your SWIM reporting – we appreciate reporting can be a complicated task and are happy to assist you in any way we can.

Important dates – SWIM annual water data submission is due by:

  • BoM reporting WSPs (just the BoM relevant data): 31st August
  • NPR reporting WSPs (those with over 10,000 connections): 30th September
  • All other WSPs (ABS and Qld Govt data): 21st October

qldwater would appreciate receiving the data as soon as possible, (at least 5 days before this deadline if possible), so that we can run it through our quality control checks before submitting it to the relevant people on the dates provided above. If you need an extension please contact us immediately.

SWIM was developed by qldwater, on behalf of Water Service Providers, to simplify the task of water data reporting. With your support and use of SWIM, we can continue to encourage government water data reporting to be rationalised and streamlined through systems such as SWIM. We urge you to submit your annual water data through SWIM on time so that its future as a water-industry-driven system is assured.

We welcome your feedback on SWIM. For more information please contact David Scheltinga (; or visit


Queensland’s second water and sewerage benchmarking report has been completed using 2011/12 data and is available here .

In total 28 Service Providers decided to participate in the public release of their data in the 2011-12 report which is a significant increase on the 17 that participated last year.

The benchmarking of Queensland’s water and sewerage data allows competition by comparison and is nationally and internationally accepted as the best tool to improve the water and sewage industry. 

This report also provides a strong foundation for negotiation with the State which is currently considering mandatory performance indicators as part of a broader suite of regulatory simplification. 

Benchmarking is essential to maintain an effective and efficient water industry and is common in other jurisdictions, nationally and in other countries. For example:


2012-2013 Benchmarking Report 2012-2013 Benchmarking Report - Release Date 24-Jun-2014: - Queensland’s Urban Potable Water and Sewerage Benchmarking Report 2012/13 This is the third annual Urban Potable Water and Sewerage Benchmarking Report to be produced by qldwater for Queensland. (1515KB)

eFlash #209 - 4 September 2013 eFlash #209 - 4 September 2013 - Release Date 05-Sep-2013: - 1. Amendments to the Regulatory Framework - Draft KPI Comments Due. | 2. LGAQ Submission on Infrastructure Charges. | (14KB)

2011-2012 Benchmarking Report 2011-2012 Benchmarking Report - Release Date 26-Mar-2013: - (1426KB)

Queensland’s Urban Potable Water and Sewerage Benchmarking Report – Trial 2010/11 Queensland’s Urban Potable Water and Sewerage Benchmarking Report – Trial 2010/11 - Release Date 15-Oct-2012: - Queensland’s inaugural Urban Potable Water and Sewerage Benchmarking Report – Trial using 2010/11 data (1378KB)

Queensland Water Newsletter # 4 7-8-2012 Queensland Water Newsletter # 4 7-8-2012 - Release Date 07-Aug-2012: - (538KB)

Annotated List of Reporting Requirements Updated March 2012 Annotated List of Reporting Requirements Updated March 2012 - Release Date 31-Mar-2011: - Annotated list of reporting requirements for Queensland Service Providers. This list was updated in March 2012 and supersedes all previous copies. | (236KB)

e Flash #125 - 22 June 2011 e Flash #125 - 22 June 2011 - Release Date 22-Jun-2011: - 1. qldwater Website Difficulties. | 2. Support for Queensland Water Skills Partnership. | 3. SWIM Training Workshops. | 4. SWIM Comparitive Reports and Water Industry Benchmarking. | (40KB)

e Flash #122 - 8 June 2011 e Flash #122 - 8 June 2011 - Release Date 08-Jun-2011: - 1. SWIM Training Sessions. | 2. Dial Before You Dig Incident Reporting Tool (DIRT) Presentation. | (31KB)

e Flash #105 - 20 January 2011 e Flash #105 - 20 January 2011 - Release Date 20-Jan-2011: - 1. Flooding. | 2. Staff Movements. | 3. IPWEAQ State Conference. | 4. Postponement of BoM Reporting Workshop. | (34KB)

e Flash #99 - 8 December 2010 e Flash #99 - 8 December 2010 - Release Date 08-Dec-2010: - 1. Australian Bureau of Statistics Request for 2009-10 Water Data - reminder. | (29KB)

e Flash #98 - 19 November 2010 e Flash #98 - 19 November 2010 - Release Date 19-Nov-2010: - 1. Australian Bureau of Statistics Request for Water Data. | (28KB)

e Flash #89 - 24 August 2010 e Flash #89 - 24 August 2010 - Release Date 24-Aug-2010: - 1. Changes to Water Reporting Requirements. | 2. Reminder About Comments on National Water Skills Business Plan. | 3. 2009/10 SWIM Reporting Year. | (36KB)

Major Urban Indicator Summary for BoM Major Urban Indicator Summary for BoM - Release Date 20-Dec-2007: - qldwater prepared a list of Bureau of Meteorology indicators that will be required of a specified list of Service Providers in Queensland. (238KB)