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United Utilities plc

Water Resources Graduate

Salary notes: 
£28,500 plus a welcome bonus of £2,000.
Job/scheme locations: 
Type of opportunity: 
Graduate scheme
Closing date: 
See organisation website

United Utilities provides water and sewage services to around seven million people in North West England.  Behind the scenes that means operating enough miles of pipework and sewers to wrap three times round the planet, investing billions of pounds to improve water and the environment across the North West, while taking care of some of the most scenic and environmentally sensitive countryside in the region. We're embracing new technology, thinking outside the box to improve services for our customers and even harnessing the renewable energy potential of the region's water, waste and weather.

In short, it's our job to bring three million households and 200,000 businesses, clean, clear water and to take their waste water away so our customers can simply get on with their day.

As the Water Resources Graduate, you’ll develop water system models and understand long term projections for climate change and customer demand to ensure the North West has a reliable supply of water in the long term. You will also develop hydrological expertise and help monitor the performance of the company’s water sources in terms of efficiency, reliability, compliance with abstraction licence conditions, and environmental impact along with liaison with the Environment Agency and other regulators on all hydrological and water resource related matters.


Through a tailored programme covering Water System Modelling, Hydrology, Compliance, Environmental Impacts, Regional Planning, Long term planning projections including further knowledge gained with Public Health, Drinking Water Regulations, and Laboratory Technical activities you will develop a wide range of water resources experience to develop yourself to lead the team in the future.

Through continuing professional development you will be encouraged to achieve a Masters (Unless you already qualified) and Chartered status as Water Resources Professional with a professional body relevant to your qualification and experience.

As a Water Resources team we are involved in a whole range of activities, providing professional advice and guidance around:

  • Drought Planning – Worldwide best practice in the developed of a Drought Plan to follow during the possibility of extreme droughts
  • Daily Operation – Optimisation of water source operation, providing hydrological expertise and knowledge to minimise whole-life costs in developing and operating surface water sources
  • Water Resource Planning – Development and modelling of long term strategies to ensure clean and reliable water now and in the future
  • Water Trading – Understand the pressures across the country and the best way nationally to resolve water scarcity across England and Wales
  • Daily Compliance - help monitor the performance of the company’s water sources in terms of efficiency, reliability, compliance with abstraction licence conditions, and environmental impact along with liaison with the Environment Agency and other regulators on all hydrological and water resource related matters.
  • Maintaining and monitoring the company's hydrometric data surface water abstraction and flow records, develop and maintain the company's Drought Plan including submissions to Defra Environment Agency and Ofwat and contribute to the preparation of the company's statutory Water Resources Management Plan.
  • Managing, developing and maintaining appropriate hydrological analysis tools and modelling systems for the assessment for the optimisation of water source and system operation in relation to reliability, costs and water quality.
  • Contribute to the optimisation of water resources operations and investment to meet company standards for supply reliability statutory at minimum whole-life cost whilst complying with regulatory and statutory requirements along with carrying out water resources modelling to support the Drought Plan, Water Resources Management Plan, capital projects and operational management. 
  • Producing data for annual reporting to Ofwat and forecasts for Price Review submissions along with contributing to managing the performance and optimisation of UU's 200 surface water source assets, ensuring the sustainability of assets in the medium to longer-time (up to 25 years).
  • Liaise with the Environment Agency on matters relating to hydrology, water resources and modelling, ensuring that the company's interest are taken fully into account also liaise with stakeholder groups on water resources and operational matters. This will include participating in the management of joint studies and modelling, representing UU at meetings with stakeholder groups and managing investigations and modelling studies of existing sources or potential new source developments as required.

Knowledge and Skills

  • You must have a 2:1 undergraduate degree in a scientific or numerate discipline
  • Highly numerate and possess a high level of competence in statistical data analysis, analytical reasoning, problem solving and planning ability.  
  • High level of competence in computer analysis skills
  • In possession of strong communication skills, including negotiating and influencing skills
  • Be self-motivated and be able to work on your own, initially under the supervision of more senior staff, and also within a multi-disciplinary team environment.
  • Show the ability to contribute as an effective team member working alongside the scientific disciplines as well as other stakeholders in the business.
  • Expected to be highly organised, excellent communicator and have a broad range of IT skills.
  • Have the ability to write clear, concise, accurate scientific reports and specifications with measurable outputs.


  • Post-graduate degree in Hydrology or Water Resources.

Additional Information

Shortlisted candidates will be invited to an assessment centre on 9th December 2019.

We are an equal opportunity employer and committed to creating a diverse environment. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, ethnicity, religion, belief, gender, sexual orientation, disability or age.

If you are offered a job with us, a number of pre-employment checks need to be carried out before your appointment can be confirmed. Any offer of employment with United Utilities will be subject to a satisfactory checking report from the Disclosure Scotland / the Disclosure and Barring Service.

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More about this vacancy

UK, West Midlands