The water industry is undergoing a fascinating transition, with more water utilities having to combat scarcity challenges and more customers requiring knowledge of their consumption patterns and working collaboratively to change behavior. William Doherty - Valor Regional sales lead, shares his insights on the water industry and Valor culture.
1. What attracted you to the water industry?
I initially made the switch to the water industry out of curiosity and an interest in helping Christine (CEO of Valor) achieve her goals. The idea that I might be able to make a good living while doing something positive for the health of the planet as well as helping communities that are struggling is appealing to me, and I have been with Valor since.
2. What is the greatest challenge / obstacle for clients from an apparent loss perspective?
Apparent losses are a big issue for water utilities worldwide. Water loss is difficult to manage due to the many ways that we see it materialize and the complexity of affected infrastructure. Access to data will be the key to proactively mitigating this issue. Thanks to Valor Water Analytics and others in the water industry, utilities have more and more ways to address this issue. They have been monitoring their water loss via annual audits for several years now but Valor can help them take another step forward by moving to a more frequent or even continuous monitoring environment. This will allow them to identify and resolve issues as and where they occur.
3. How do you keep up to date with the water utilities news / developments?
I am lucky to have a position in Valor where it is my job to talk to all sorts of water professionals in a region that is under drought conditions. Because of the environment these people work in, they naturally lead the industry in thought and innovation. I glean a lot about the state of the water industry from my conversations with these individuals. The AWWA, ACWA, and other organizations that bring these folks together for constant education, conferences, and workshops are also great resources.
4. How are Valor sellers perceived in the marketplace?
I hope we are perceived as people who are there to listen and help our customers in any way we can. Steve (Director of Sales) and I try to achieve our goals without being too pushy or salesy.
5. Where do you see AMI (Advanced Metering Infrastructure) technology going?
AMI is a great tool for utilities to gain a much more granular view of their systems. It is a large investment and solutions like ours can potentially add to the return on investment. I expect water utilities to start to change to AMI over the next 10 years as the benefits in revenue recovery and process efficiency become more clear, and the price of AMI hardware drops.
6. How would you describe Valor culture?
Valor has a true start-up culture. We are blessed to have a very pragmatic leader who believes in staying lean and efficient. Our team is diverse and we are creating an environment where you always have many different ideas and input when discussing our plans and future. I see this as one of our biggest strengths.
7. What advice would you give a sales person applying to join Valor?
I would say the learning curve in this field is very steep, unless this is an area you already have experience in. Take the time to talk to as many people in the sector as possible when you are starting out. The job is understanding each utility’s needs and identifying opportunities where Valor can help. Every utility is different based on their key needs, level of sophistication, environment they operate in, management style, economic environment in their service area, and government mandates in the region so it is very important to listen carefully and ask relevant questions so you have a deep understanding of where we might be able to help.
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