Since its inception in 2002, ISO TC 224 has established 17 Working Groups that produce international standards on various aspects of water services activities, and its membership has grown from the initial 12 participating members to the current 39 participating members and 26 observing members.
All projects undertaken by TC 224 contribute to the development, promotion and use of ISO 245xx documents.

Why are ISO 245xx documents important?

Attention to the content of ISO 245xx standards can support, provide direction to, and facilitate dialogue between water utilities, users and other stakeholders that are interested in:

  • achieving satisfactory, sustainable and resilient drinking water, wastewater and stormwater services,
  • effective and efficient management of the water utilities and the utilities' assets,
  • closely monitoring the quality of their drinking water and wastewater,
  • preparing for crisis situations,
  • addressing the environmental impacts of such service provision.

Key benefits of adopting ISO 245xx International Standards 

  • Adoption of common vocabulary to aid interaction between the water utility and its stakeholders;
  • Improved focus on commonly agreed strategic objectives;
  • Greater focus on level of service terms and the cost implications of changes to service levels
  • Increased likelihood of securing resources to support service enhancements;
  • Consequential improvements in performance, service levels and user wellbeing / satisfaction following additional resource inputs;
  • Improved recognition and management of risk,
  • Earlier and better-informed event detection and more reliable decision-making processes;
  • Improved crisis management capability;
  • Enhanced stakeholder confidence through less volatility in compliance and conformity and performance and service delivery leading to the water utility’s improved reputation with stakeholders.

Auditing against ISO 245xx standards

Some of the documents developed by ISO TC 224 are management system standards, which can be nationally adopted by individual organizations or relevant authorities and countries and used for auditing and certification purposes.

Other 245xx standards contain good practice guidelines which can be adopted, as appropriate, by organizations for their own purposes such as confirming progress towards meeting corporate or imposed service objectives (see ISO 24510, ISO 24511 and ISO 24512) or used for benchmarking and best practice sharing purposes amongst utilities. ISO 24523: 2017 provides Guidelines for benchmarking of water utilities.