Redesigned utilities bill to help consumers track usage

Comparison with neighbours, utility-saving tips among highlights of user-friendly layout

The utilities bill you get from this month will have a new look. It has been redesigned to help residential consumers better track and reduce their energy and water consumption.

This initiative is a joint effort by SP Services, the Energy Market Authority (EMA), national water agency PUB and City Gas.

The bill was redesigned with input from usability tests done with the public's participation, said the four organisations in a joint statement yesterday.

The new layout allows consumers to view their utility usage at a glance - for the billing period and the past five months - and compare this with the average consumption of neighbours living in similar housing types within a block, or a street for landed premises, as well as with the national average.

This information is shown in consumption graphs, which have moved from the back page of the bill to the front in the new design.

The graphs in current bills compare consumers' usage with the "national average consumption for your house type", which is a less useful comparison as similar homes in different parts of Singapore could have different usage patterns.

Other highlights in the redesigned bill include personalised tips on how to be more energy- and water-efficient, the use of icons for improved clarity, and larger text to emphasise important information such as "Total amount".

SP Services managing director Chuah Kee Heng and City Gas chief executive Kenny Tan said the redesigned bill is user-friendly in helping people read and compare their utilities consumption.

STRESS ON CONSERVATION

To ensure water sustainability in the long run, we need to manage not only water supply but also water demand. It is important that people understand their role in conserving water. A well-designed bill can help them track their usage at a glance.

PUB CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER CHEW SIOW NEE

EMA chief executive Ng Wai Choong said: "The redesigned utilities bill makes energy-saving information more accessible to households. This hopefully encourages them to adopt energy-efficient measures in their homes."

PUB chief financial officer Chew Siow Nee said: "To ensure water sustainability in the long run, we need to manage not only water supply but also water demand.

"It is important that people understand their role in conserving water. A well-designed bill can help them track their usage at a glance."

Priscilla Goy

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 02, 2016, with the headline 'Redesigned utilities bill to help consumers track usage'. Print Edition | Subscribe