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The Digital Transformation of Waternet


Waternet is the only water company in the Netherlands that takes care of the entire water cycle. A major task, in which digitisation plays an important role. Waternet was an early adopter of digital, and embarked on an extensive digital transformation a decade ago. Dept has been Waternet’s long term strategic partner, developing smart tech solutions to prepare Waternet for its digital future.

3 Core Values

Providing safe, clean and sufficient drinking water for everyone is Waternet’s mission, and it is committed to providing the best drinking water in the Netherlands. Waternet’s three core values are service, sustainability and efficiency, which is emphasised in all company activities. Waternet’s key objective was to offer an 8+ customer experience and have 80% of all customer communication run digitally.


a perfect combination of tech, UX & visual design


Dept helped Waternet to set up two digital teams, with a total of fourteen digital professionals working in Agile Scrum. These roles vary from strategists, to frontend developers, UX designers to backend developers to DevOps engineers. The teams work fully integrated at a tactical and operational level, with a scrum master and product owner from Waternet.


Tech, UX and visual design enable Waternet to offer the best user experience to its customers. No matter how beautiful and innovative a design, usability must be naturally intuitive. By applying the latest insights and principles, Dept assures quality and security. For example, DigiD is used for authentication and an external IT security assessment is undertaken every year.

Dept uses the following standards with web development activities:

  • Object-oriented Microsoft.Net application based on standard design patterns and SOLID principles.
  • Episerver Content Management System (CMS).
  • Fully automated development street (CI / CD) based on Azure DevOps and BitBucket.
  • Development street (CI / CD) integrated automatic functional regression tests based on TestCafe.
  • Development street (CI / CD) integrated Unit tests based on NUnit and Code Quality tests based on SonarQube.
  • Continuous Security Test (OWASP) based on NetSparker Cloud.
  • Enterprise CDN including DDoS protection, Intrusion Detection and Intrusion Prevention.
  • GraphQL API based on Apollo on Node.js.
  • Enterprise Containers based on Docker on Azure.


In addition to developing new functionality, it is also the responsibility of the developers to make the product maintainable, transferable and future-ready. That is why Dept is replaced REST API with  a GraphQL API, Iallowing for much faster development with a much smaller footprint in the frontend code. GraphQL has all the benefits of REST (together with Json platform and browser independent) and solves the main problems of REST (type-safety and configurable end-points). The GraphQL API is also being developed in JavaScript – a programming language that is mastered by the entire team – by both front and backend developers, so new features and maintenance can be delivered faster.


In order to provide the best experience, services, products and ideas are tested at different stages. An example is ‘Warm Welcome’, where new customers learn about Waternet and the customer journey. This concept was conceived and validated in a design sprint, realised for a limited area and then optimised and rolled out. Assessments takes place during the scrum process, with stakeholders attending sprint demos. Testing and optimisation is then carried out on the basis of user data.


Dept advises Waternet strategically, tactically and operationally. From conversational chatbots to self service portals, personalisation to voice services, Dept is preparing Waternet to maximise its digital future. And customers are responding warmly; customer satisfaction has increased to 8 and usage of its digital services increases year-on-year.