Changing climate and other environmental conditions are intensifying the frequency and severity of harmful algal blooms (HABs). Thus it is important to understand causes and impacts to potable water treatment plants (WTPs). Operators should proactively identify monitoring strategies as well as options for dealing with the algal biomass, remnants of decaying algal cells, and especially secondary metabolites that the algae produce, such as taste and odor compounds and toxins. All of these algal products can compromise water quality and water treatment processes in different ways. The specifics of how to monitor for these items are discussed in another article, but here is an overview of some strategies to put in place before the next HAB threat arrives.