METAWATER to Open Training Center for Water and Environmental Infrastructure and Equipment
Responding to Growing Need for Further Comprehensiveness and Wide-area Management in the Water and sewage Business
While the Japanese water and sewage industry is facing an urgent need to revamp and complete seismic retrofitting of its aging facilities and equipment, service operators such as local governments are searching for solutions to the problems of declining revenue and a shortage of engineers due to the diminishing population. Against this backdrop, public-private partnerships (PPPs) for comprehensive, wide-area water and sewage services stand out as a viable path to developing sustainable infrastructure and services.
As a corporation providing total solutions for water and environmental infrastructure that is equipped with both machine and electric engineering technologies, METAWATER takes part in various PPP projects aimed at providing comprehensive water and sewage services. At the same time, METAWATER is working on developing information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure, which it calls the Water Business Cloud (WBC) and which is crucial to accumulating maintenance know-how and enhancing operational efficiency.
In order to respond to the expected growing needs for comprehensive, wide-area water and sewage services, it is imperative that METAWATER not only enhance its ICT infrastructure but also establish the capability to provide training to local facility operators. METAWATER also sees an urgent need to help local operators accumulate, share, and pass on their unique operational knowledge and to centralize the procurement and supply of repair parts. As a step toward realizing this vision, METAWATER will open a training center for water and environmental infrastructure facilities and equipment operators on November 1. The training center, expected to start operations by the end of FY2017, will be headed by executive officer, Michio Fujii, and located at the METAWATER head office.
The textbooks and curriculum for the training center are based on the same training new employees at METAWATER have gotten for years. Consisting of classroom lectures that are primarily designed to expand trainees’ knowledge as well as on-the-job training sessions that will take place at an actual work site, the curriculum is engineered to help trainees, including those who have no prior experience, quickly improve their skill levels. More specifically, trainees will have access to special websites where they can learn about the basic mechanisms behind water and sewage infrastructure and knowledge over the quality and safety, as well as learn related technical terms. They will also learn how to operate tablet devices and keep daily work logs using METAWATER’s original tools. Once trainees have completed a program taught by expert instructors, each will be issued a certificate attesting to the skill level they have achieved.
Training will initially focus on the area of water infrastructure, where the need for comprehensive and wide-area services is acute, and later encompass sewage as well as resources and environmental management (waste management and recycling). METAWATER also plans to link the training center with a 24-hour customer center in the future, enabling the head office to provide backup support to on-site facility operators.
Moving ahead, METAWATER will work with local governments that agree to use their facilities as training sites so that hands-on training can be conducted across Japan. In addition to the training center, METAWATER will eventually establish additional corporate facilities, such as a knowledge center designed to help operators accumulate, share, and pass on their operational knowledge, as well as a parts supply center for the centralized procurement and supply of repair parts. Everything is being done with an eye to enhancing the efficiency of PPP projects and building a strong foundation for a company with a sound social infrastructure.
|ICT||Information and communications technology regarding PC and internet|
|EPC||Engineering, procurement, and construction of facilities and equipment|
|O&M||Operation and maintenance of facilities and equipment|
|DB||Design-build: a method used in public infrastructure projects in which design and construction services are contracted by a private-entity|
|DBO||Design, build, and operate: a method used in public infrastructure projects in which design, construction, operation, and maintenance services are contracted by a private entity|
|PFI||Private finance initiative: a method used in public infrastructure projects in which design, construction, operation, maintenance, management services and capital procurement are contracted by private entities|
|Concession||Granting a private entity the right to operate a public infrastructure service on a long-term basis without assigning it ownership of the facility|