Asset Management: 12 Steps To Getting Started
Back in February, I reported on a new study by CH2M HILL and McGraw-Hill Construction that touted the virtues of asset management planning for utilities. This comprehensive and strategic operating procedure is credited with helping utilities — and any organization, really — achieve the following objectives:
- Explain/justify budget proposals
- Prioritize needs
- Increase understanding (risk and consequence) of alternative investment options
- Balance spending between O&M and capital investments
- Reduce costs without reducing level of service
CH2M HILL followed up its study with a series of blog posts devoted to the ins and outs of asset management, sharing best practices and diving deep into the individual components of the fast-growing trend. The final blog in the series was recently posted by CH2M’s Nick Pealy, senior consultant in the Asset Management and Reliability Group. In it, he shares these 12 steps to getting started:
- Make asset management a program (and a priority!)
- Develop an asset management policy — your commitment statement
- Create and charter a steering committee led by the department head to oversee the program
- Define meaningful levels of service
- Develop performance measures — set targets and review progress (at least quarterly), and commit to addressing problems
- Develop a risk profile for the organization — help focus your efforts
- Assess data needs and gaps — establish a plan to address gaps
- Train staff on the fundamentals — levels of service, risk and consequence, performance measurement, and business case development
- Require business cases — Subject these to steering committee review
- Educate decision-makers
- Communicate progress and recognize successes
- Take field trips to visit best practice organizations
Having reviewed the study myself, attended various seminars on the subject, and long supported intensive, holistic, and long-term planning for utilities in general, I’m subscribing to the benefits of asset management planning.
For those still on the fence, consult the original study for more (potential) convincing, or take heart in the following real-world example of asset management planning in action: Columbus DPU's Asset Management Program Achieves Groundbreaking ROI.
Help your colleagues in the decision-making process by sharing your thoughts and experiences on asset management planning below.