Arial view of UU WwTW in Lancashire

Mott MacDonald – United Utilities

Mott MacDonald: Capital programme commercial assurance





  • Programme value


  • Programme duration

    5 years

  • Client savings


  • Process improvements


Assuring commercial success

Client need

United Utilities (UU) is responsible for all water and wastewater infrastructure, across the North West of England. Their AMP6 capital delivery framework constituted a circa £1.5bn investment over 5 years, in addition to their £100m per year Network Maintenance Alliance (NMA) framework.

With multiple Construction Delivery Partners (CDPs) being contracted to assist with the maintenance, design and build of the programme’s major infrastructure assets, UU required a collaborative and efficient approach to the commercial assurance of these works, ensuring that the programmes were delivered as cost efficiently as possible, whilst maintaining positive relationships with the CDPs.

UU WwTW close-up

Systematic commercial assurance

CappKind Solution

CappKind was responsible for the development and implementation of the AMP6 capital delivery and NMA commercial assurance systems in support of Mott MacDonald. Through review of the associated framework contracts and understanding of project risk and best practice, we designed bespoke risk-based assurance plans for both frameworks, focusing on commercial and process related risks, with input from the UU commercial team.

Once scoped, we led the teams that carried out audits of CDP contract management / administration and defined cost recovery. These audits were designed to identify areas of prominent commercial risk to the client, whilst working collaboratively with both the CPD’s and UU commercial team. We ensured resolution of issues and the implementation of improvements to minimise risk and increase value for money.

Core aspects of the service delivered included:

  • Development of framework specific commercial risk management plans
  • Delivery of programme wide audits of all CDPs through commercial, statistical and process related analysis
  • Verification of defined costs and identification of non-complaint amounts
  • Recommendation of resolution actions and development of an assurance action tracker to manage collectively agreed improvement opportunities
  • Sharing areas of best practise between CDPs in order to promote continual improvement and shared learning.
Commercial risk management through process improvement

The impact

This comprehensive approach to commercial assurance has provided significantly increased certainty to UU management regarding the affordability and deliverability of the capital programme.

Through the identification and quantification of commercial risk throughout the project lifecycle, we were able to successfully challenge and manage project costs and facilitate best practice process improvements.

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