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Effective Asset Management in Utilities: A Crucial Step towards Viability
By Utilities Tech Outlook | Friday, August 09, 2019
Asset management forms the crux of excellent service delivery strategy in the utility industry by guaranteeing the best infrastructure and equipment.
FREMONT, CA: It is imperative for the utility industry to do exceptionally well with managing assets. Balancing the need for expensive and modern equipment with affordable services for the public depends directly on how efficiently a utility company manages its equipment. Optimizing the life of assets, both new and old, is a substantial part of the whole process. The importance of asset management can be understood by considering how it benefits companies. Apart from enhancing the lifespan of equipment, it also enables a quick response to emergency situations. Thus, in the case of disasters, one can expect the utility sector to be resilient and undertake fast recovery.
Regulatory standards enable companies to achieve a basic level of practices that aid in asset management. Other best practices that can increase the potential of assets in the utility industry are discussed in this article.
· Evaluating the Present Scenario
Utility companies need to take stock of assets before starting to manage them. Thus, the first step towards effective asset management is a careful evaluation that will help in forming a report on the exact number of asset that a company owns, the correct location of each asset, a timeline of maintenance activities, the present value of particular assets and the expected lifespan. By considering and reporting on all of these aspects, a company can successfully visualize where it stands as far as asset management goes.
· Ensuring Quality of Service
After having an inventory of assets, companies can shift their attention to optimizing the level of service. Checking for the viability of equipment by taking into consideration external and internal factors is essential. Companies should also look into matters of compliance. Maintenance capabilities should be appraised, and recommendations for better services should be made so that companies can make assets future-ready.
· Categorizing Assets and Prioritizing Management
In the utility industry, companies have a wide range of equipment with varying degrees of functionality. The conditions to which the equipment and infrastructure are exposed also differ greatly. Hence, one should not expect the same strategy of maintenance and management for all assets. Ideally, service providers should make a list categorizing the assets that carry critical importance. This makes the process streamlined since companies are able to pay attention to repairing and maintaining those parts that are crucial to unhindered service delivery. One can allocate resources for repair in an optimal way through this approach.
· Operational Budgets
Many things go into maintaining the system. Estimating the requirements of capital and workforce in advance is key to smart asset management. By creating a hierarchy of costs and trying out all combinations, companies can work with the least cost alternatives. Keeping a well-rounded view of the finances and resources helps companies respond efficiently even in times of unforeseen issues.
· A Proactive Maintenance Plan
Both short term and long term planning are essential to creating a functional asset management strategy. Accumulating the right capabilities and devising a management system that keeps a proactive approach at the fore can help a company with consistent asset management. Being reactive can hamper utility companies in significant ways and disrupt services. Periodic checks, technology-enabled asset tracking, and predictive maintenance should be the highlight of a good asset management plan. Improved decision-making that utilizes smart solutions can give utility companies an edge in facilitating systematic, holistic, and cost-efficient asset management.
The modern, digitalized era demands reliable services and glitch-free operations. Knowledge-driven, efficient asset management gives an opportunity for utility companies to deliver satisfactory services to its customers.