CASE STUDY: The Importance of Good Stakeholder Relationships

Saur case study
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We found KPC’s experience, professional attitude and skills made them a very valuable partner. Creative and open-minded, Deborah is dedicated to projects, swift to react and participated completely to the success of the project. In fact, our relationship made her far more than a consultant.

Celyne Andureau, International Director, Saur Group

When a company’s daily operation start to impact on the community’s day to day life, tempers can flare and relations can break down. Suddenly, even little known organisations become synonymous locally with bad headlines and poor perceptions.


The Saur Group is one of France’s largest water utility companies. Today, their flagship PFI contract in Glasgow is a showcase for innovation and partnership. However, when the waste water treatment plant came under significant operational pressure, it also put a strain on relationships with the PFI client, the local community.

With experience of stakeholder relations from the pressurised rail industry, KPC was able to develop a programme of stakeholder communications that would help improve relations in a highly charged environment where regulatory and compliance factors added to the pressure.

Our Approach

KPC set about creating a stakeholder plan that was tailored to each audience, reflecting their individual concerns and needs. Key messages of a partnership approach, emphasising Saur’s long-term commitment to the plant and to the area, while taking ownership and responsibility for its contractual commitments, were underpinned by demonstrable proof and actions that helped establish Saur as a genuine community player and trustworthy partner.

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  • Over 2 years complaints fell by more than half, and continue to fall.
  • Regular negative headlines in the local press have almost disappeared, with no bad press in the past 2 years.
  • Improved system of complaint resolution has seen complaint response times reduced to same day.
  • Communications with PFI partners and public authority have facilitated joint campaigns and proactive community events. Saur is now host and a joint presence at all stakeholder events.
  • Regular staff newsletter has become a vehicle to celebrate success as well as to share information between the client, community and Saur’s HQ.