Business Plan


Market Governance

Improvement programme summary

Our Market Governance programme is focused on supporting the principle of industry self-governance that delivers improvement and enables the market to develop for the benefit of customers.

This programme will build on the findings of our 2020/21 review of market governance and the independent review of Panel effectiveness, due to be completed prior to the start of 2021/22.

The review will identify improvements in governance structures, working practices and behaviours to make market governance easier to understand, more transparent and responsive.

In 2021/22, our governance programme will include:

Delivery of code changes - to embed improved governance structures and code principles (based on the findings of the 2020/21 governance review)
Associated revisions to Panel and committee memberships (if required)
Revised and improved working practices
Publication of governance guidance and associated supporting materials - to increase transparency and enhance visibility and engagement with governance groups
How trading parties and customers will benefit

This programme is a key component in delivering our Market Improvement strategic priority.

Industry self-governance allows wholesalers and retailers to drive amendments to the market rules. Through the Panel and its committees and sub-groups, industry expertise is a cornerstone of decision-making. However, market governance is seen as slow, lacking in transparency and a clear focus on delivering the best customer outcomes. Concerns have been raised that market governance is inefficient and there is no guiding mind for the industry. Ofwat perceives a need for greater independence and customer insight in decision-making and trading parties desire greater agility in considering tactical change.

These improvements will be created by a market governance programme that:

Reduces duplication and wasted effort
Facilitates earlier resolution of market issues and pain points with associated benefits for customers.
How the workstream builds on our current 2020/21 Business Plan 

In 2020/21, under the market governance review, we commissioned an independent review of Panel effectiveness. The work has included consultation with trading parties on the performance of the Panel and industry governance. This feedback is being considered by the independent reviewer, Satori Board Review. The findings of the review will be reported to the Panel at the end of 2020/21 and will inform the way forward for the implementation of improvements through 2021/22.

Delivery for 2021/22 – milestones and outcomes
Implementation of market governance review findings
Code changes raised, working practice improvements rolled out

Code changes implemented, Panel and committee changes implemented
Efficient handling of tactical change

Greater transparency and enhanced engagement across trading parties

Reduced duplication and wasted effort

Opportunity for earlier resolution of market issues and pain points with associated benefits for customers
Three-year delivery plan

The implementation of market governance improvements will be the focus of year one.

Current year
Year one
Year two
Year three
Market governance review completed
Governance improvements delivered through code changes, Panel and committee changes and working practice improvements
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