Acumen brings water on-line

Acumen brings water on-line

Acumen Multimedia has won a lucrative contract to build a sophisticated new Web site for Victorian utilities company City West Water.

After an exhaustive two year search for the right developer, the Government-owned drinking water and waste utility chose Acumen to build a Web site that includes several sophisticated applications to help the organisation serve Melbourne's CBD and inner and western suburbs.

For Acumen Multimedia managing director Russell Yardley, the appointment is an important win. Yardley believes Acumen won the contract due to its experience in user-centric design that enables clients to utilise the Internet effectively.

"We are delighted - we have been bidding for about two years for this, as [City West Water] did such a thorough job of researching their needs and the options available," he said. "What they are after is a comprehensive implementation of online applications."

Acumen Multimedia is an Internet applications developer whose previous Government work includes the likes the Victorian Government portal ( and 20 Victorian councils, including the site for the City of Melbourne. It will build a set of Internet applications that will enable customers of City West Water to notify the company of postal address or tenancy changes; to request meter reads; and receive and pay bills on-line directly to City West Water, as well as the existing option of paying through Australia Post's POSTbillpay service.

It will also enable solicitors and real estate agents to lodge property ownership applications; and plumbers and builders will be able to request property service plans and lodge applications for approval to connect water and sewerage infrastructure.

And more importantly, all of these tasks will be processed without taking up the resources of City West's staff. Acumen, who will build the presentation layer and the middleware for the site, will complete the project in conjunction with Sanderson Computers. Sanderson implemented the back-end financial and database applications currently running City West Water, and will assist Acumen in integrating the new Web interface with the back-end systems. Transactions will then flow through the Web interface into back-end systems without data needing to be re-entered.

The site will be built using a combination of industry standard tools as well as tools Acumen has developed itself over its 15 year history, and the middleware to be used will be either of Oracle's application server or IBM's WebSphere application server, to be decided in the following weeks.

The implementation of the new site is expected to be completed by December 2001.

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