The most effective ways to kickstart asset management

02 May


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With several of our consultants working in digitalization projects at various large asset management-focused companies, it’s safe to say that we at Trilations know what we’re talking about when we mention asset management. As a specialized consulting company we keep investing in broadening our knowledge on this subject. This way we can continue to offer our clients the best possible advice while facing their organizational transformations. In this article we shed some light on what it takes to implement and/or improve asset management in your company and more notably: why we are convinced doing this is a crucial part of your company’s future.

First things first

To start off, let’s align on the term ‘asset management’. Asset management is all about the coordinated activities of an organization to realize added value from assets. Maximizing value is of course, easier said than done. It’s a careful balancing act between costs, risks, opportunities and performance benefits which will eventually ensure your business objectives are achieved.

Define the right assets

A first important aspect to good asset management is to determine which assets you’ll be applying these principles to, and to what extent. This is very different from company to company, depending on their main business objectives.

Every company has a plethora of assets floating around, but you don’t want to apply the full scope of asset management to all of them. For example, think about how many pens you have circulating in your company. Even though they help you indirectly achieve your business objectives, and as such are considered an ‘asset’, you don’t want to spend time and resources tracking the location, ownership and state of every single pen within your company. However, if your company’s main activity is the production of luxury writing instruments, you will want to do exactly that. That is because the pens are now, your most important assets in achieving your business objectives.

Defining the right assets to apply advanced asset management techniques to is your first step in the balancing act we mentioned before.

Choose the right framework

As with everything involving an organizational transformation, there are different paths leading to your business goals. Achieving the best possible result, is entirely dependent on having a structured, yet flexible approach.

Some of our largest customers, such as Fluvius and the government of Flanders, are advancing their asset management policies guided by the IAM framework. A body of knowledge that we consider as one of the best approaches for an asset management transformation.

This framework is the product of a collaboration between many experienced asset management professionals, educators, trainers and other stakeholders. It’s designed to provide meaningful insights into the scope of activities within asset management, their interrelationships and the achievement of strategic goals within the organization. Whilst covering 39 detailed asset management activities, the framework can be split up into 6 high-level thematic groups:

  1. Strategy and planning: aligns an organization’s asset management activities, and the output of its assets, with its organizational goals.

  2. Asset management decision-making: maximizes the realized value of an asset throughout its life phases (creation, maintenance and operation, and end-of-life).

  3. Lifecycle delivery: this is where the asset management plans are implemented. Thanks to good design, good procurement and operating practices, less corrective maintenance is needed on your assets. This increases their reliability and availability, adding value at a lower cost.

  4. Asset information: managing assets using asset data and information as a key facilitator for asset management activities.

  5. Organization and people: effective leadership is critical in building an organization with an appropriate culture that supports achieving good asset management and the necessary change management accompanied with it.

  6. Risk & review: identifying risks, understanding where they come from and how to manage them. On top of that, assessment mechanisms are made up to continuously improve asset management activities.

As Trilations is mostly providing roles such as business/functional analysts, project managers or test coordinators within digitalization projects, it comes as no surprise that we are mainly active in the 4th category: asset information. However, due to the interrelationships of asset management activities and more complex role responsibilities, we are also active within strategy and planning (1), decision making (2) and organization and people (3).

In our commitment to establish the IAM framework as our go-to body of knowledge when it comes to asset management, we’re actively working with our clients to implement these principles. On top of that we are also continuously building our knowledge via internal research and knowledge sharing sessions.

See if you want to go further still

The content of the IAM framework reflects the principles and requirements of the ISO* 55.000 standard. This standard defines the requirements for the development, implementation, maintenance and improvement of an asset management system. Organizations can choose to get certified in it.

Currently, only one company in Belgium (Aquafin) has an ISO 55.000 certificate. Nevertheless, certification offers many advantages. An organization can use it to demonstrate that it guarantees continuous improvement, more consistency in business practices and lower costs in terms of asset management. Having an ISO certificate is a sign that an organization is well-run and credible. As a result, certified organizations often win more contracts on top of their internal improvements.

Obtaining certification is done through certification bodies. These are quite scarce at the moment. There is only 1 organization in Belgium and 1 in France that offers a certification in ISO 55.000.

Get the right partner

Moving forward, Trilations will closely follow evolutions in asset management by both experience and exploration as part of our knowledge building track. Our main goal is to continuously improve our services towards our clients and assist them in the implementation of overall better asset management, via digitalization projects or improving policy and change management.

Enjoy the results

So, why is the best possible asset management a crucial part of your company’s future? The short answer: We already see a direct positive impact on the financial performance and an improvement of the overall service delivery of clients who have started taking their asset management activities to the next level. If you want to know more about the advantages of an enhanced asset management strategy, you should get in touch with our experts below.

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