The Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald says Irish Water may have got off to a slow start in relation to how it handles its public relations.
Minister Fitzgerald was responding to comments from former junior minister Fergus O'Dowd who accused the agency of being uncaring, arrogant and of failing to sell the message to the public of why water charges are necessary.
The Taoiseach Enda Kenny says he thinks Mr O'Dowd was just making the point that constant engagement with the community is needed.
Minister Fitzgerald said: "I think it's very important in any utility that you continue to develop the very best practice as far as customer relations are concerned and information to the public.
"That's a challenge that Irish Water have to face and perhaps they did get off to a slow start, but they really do have to work on customer relations and good quality information for people because this is a utility that's a very important utility."