This vacancy is now closed


At Thames Water, we make a daily difference to our 15 million customers by supplying 2.6 billion litres of water through 32,000 km of pipes, keeping taps flowing and toilets flushing. We deliver life's essential service so our customers, communities and the environment can thrive.

As the UK’s largest water company, we are taking action for a new world of water - fixing the problems of today and building resilience for tomorrow.

Thames Water is undergoing significant transformation as part of the turnaround of our business. This role specifically supports activities to drive a step change in our operational complaints and customer contact performance.

This role is an important part of helping to improve our performance, responsible for leading projects and programmes to understand the root cause of complaints across all our operational communication channels and work with business stakeholders to change processes, ways of working, systems and customer journeys.

What you’ll be doing as the Operations Complaints Programme Lead

This role is accountable for leading a programme team to deliver high performance and an exceptionally high quality of service to our operational household customers.

This role will interact with key stakeholders within operational (and retail) complaints management and customer contact. This is expected to include operations customer contact, operations case management, complaints handling teams, planning, and scheduling teams, field operations teams, management and leadership teams within Operations and colleagues in retail (including contact, complaints and product teams).

There may also be the opportunity to engage with external stakeholders or regulators (for example to learn from other organisations) on customer complaints.

  • Owning and delivering initiatives to improve operational complaints and customer contact performance.
  • Analysing complaints and customer contact processes, procedures, and systems.
  • Analysing and interpreting data, particularly root cause analysis, customer journeys, and customer experience.
  • Working collaboratively with stakeholders.
  • Producing effective outputs to support project governance and communications.
  • Managing change within a dynamic operational environment.
  • Building a continuous improvement and transformation culture.

This is a hybrid working role with a base location of either Kemble Court, Green Park, Reading (close to M4 Junction 11) or our head office in central Reading (close to Reading train station).

Working hours are 36 hours per week, Monday to Friday.

What you should bring to the role

  • Experience working in a customer service or customer complaints management role.
  • The above experience would ideally be within an operational business such as the water industry, other utilities, telecommunications or large-scale construction.
  • Proven track record of continuously improving and sustaining high levels of service provided by your team.
  • Previous continuous improvement, transformation and project change experience.
  • Experience working as part of an operational business.
  • Using data and insight to inform focus areas for improvement.
  • A proactive and solutions-focused approach to activities.
  • Ability to build cohesive relationships and influence key, high-level internal and external stakeholders.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills, with the ability to challenge stakeholders constructively for positive customer resolutions.
  • IT literate – experience in using key applications such as SAP CRM and Salesforce.

What’s in it for you?

  • Competitive salary up to £50,000.
  • 26 days holiday per year increasing to 30 with the length of service. (Plus bank holidays)
  • Contributory pension – Defined Contribution - Maximum of 12% -2x employee contribution.
  • Personal Medical Assessments – Open to all once a year.
  • Wider benefits scheme including our benefits hub, which is packed full of offers and information to save you money and support your wellbeing.

Who are we?

Our business continues to operate as usual, delivering our essential services to around 16 million customers across London, Thames Valley and the Home Counties. 

At Thames Water, our purpose is crystal clear - to deliver life’s essential service so our customers, communities and planet can thrive.

Water is life’s great leveller. Every living thing needs it, every single day. From people to plants, birds to bees, farms to factories, we all need it to thrive, and we’re committed to taking care of it for us all.

But keeping water flowing is becoming harder. From scorching summers to wetter winters, extreme weather affects everything from our pipes to our local rivers. We need to keep millions more kettles boiling, public services operating, washing machines spinning, showers running and more, so every drop is more precious than ever. Are you ready to play your part?

Working at Thames Water

At Thames Water, we recognise that people are at the heart of our business. To help us succeed in providing life's essential service, we need a range of skills and capabilities, representative of society throughout our business.

We seek to attract and retain a cultural mix of people who can offer different but complementary attitudes, values, talents, and knowledge. We understand the importance of appreciating and harnessing the unique skills, experiences, backgrounds, and differences that each individual brings.

Our over-arching diversity and inclusion aim is to ensure Thames Water is a diverse and inclusive great place to work. We encourage applications from everyone and offer extra support for those who need it throughout the recruitment process.

Find out more about working at Thames Water

When a crisis happens, we all rally around to support our customers. As part of Team Thames, you’ll have the opportunity to sign up to support our customers on the frontline as an ambassador. Full training will be given for what is undoubtedly an incredibly rewarding experience. It’s also a great opportunity to learn more about our business, meet colleagues and earn some extra money along the way.

Disclaimer: due to the high volume of applications we receive, we may close the advert earlier than the advertised date, so we encourage you to apply as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.