Water Journal : Water Journal November 2014
NOVEMBER 2014 WATER 33 Feature Article Water agencies around the world aim to provide adequate and sustainable water services to their customers both now and into the future through the effective management of their assets. With the advent of the new ISO55X Asset Management System Standards we now have a standard language for asset management (building on PAS55 and the IIMM) and the industry is shifting from an asset view of the world to one of service. As the industry progresses into this mode of operation we will need to focus and understand what impacts our services, how we fund these things, and how best to manage that. In service-driven asset management the question isn't so much "what will the asset cost me if I do X?" but more "what is the service impact if don't do X?" This means taking a short-, medium- and long- term view of our services and decision-making to ensure we provide those services as effectively and sustainably as possible. To do this we need budgets linked to services and this is done via our assets. In a nutshell, we deliver services through our assets. Each asset behaves differently and we manage this based on the services it needs to provide. We thus de ne strategies and budgets for the future, to allow us to continue to provide these services sustainably, either with existing assets or new ones. To manage services in this manner we need to understand our levels of service, how they link to our assets, and what the impact will be if we change something at the asset level. In other words, we need Line of Sight in our asset management system -- from our customers and services through to our assets and actions, nances and decision-making. This is a shift in how we run our businesses that will require time and resources to move into a more strategic and 'linked up' business model. And, while the industry is heading this way and it's great in principle, what about all of the asset 'stuff' we don't have enough time in the week to manage? How do we move beyond the current state into a more strategic approach? The answer to this question is vast and varied. We need to look at the impact of this shift and how we leverage our knowledge and capability as an industry to progress beyond the day-to-day and do more with less. If we take a look at a cross-section of the water industry now, and look at what the current scenario and future might look like, it's something like this: What does the asset management system look like today? - Management A buzzword at the board level but not a key driver; mid-level management focus mostly, depending on background. - Approach Varies by organisation, depending on key people. - Understanding Means different things to each department: assets to engineering, dollars to nance, administration to IT, products/services to operations. - Information Silos of knowledge and data -- everywhere. - Technology Big, expensive IT systems running at 20 per cent capability, handling the day-to-day, and delivering the value we hung our $$ hat on -- right? They make us smarter, don't they? - Maintenance "That's how it's always been done, Bob knows why, just ask Bob. You know Bob, right?". - Planning Our future projects are approved and in next year's capital budget. - Strategy We work under a company statement -- nance has a strategy and we have some big capital projects underway. - Service levels Yes, we know when we service our assets, thanks. - Line of Sight What can I see? Get out of the way and I'll tell you! What does the asset management system look like in ve years' time? - Management Key input to decision-making based on regulations, budgeting and social expectations; they know what ISO55X is. - Approach Standard core process across industry and a key skill for all asset management staff. Training is provided as part of on-boarding. - Understanding There is a common understanding and language in asset management; we understand how what we do relates to others. - Information The internet of asset management. Companies and practitioners connected, improving as an industry, using benchmarks and analytics to identify best practice. We grow together. - Technology Connected, affordable, smart systems that leverage and accelerate capability across industry. Handling transactions is old news... This is the age of asset intelligence! - Maintenance We use intelligent maintenance procedures that are benchmarked and we actively contribute to knowledge development across the industry with the internet of asset management. Maintenance is based on levels of service and risk; our maintenance managers are business-focused. - Planning We base our planning on our future service strategy; we use tools and science to optimise our decision-making to make the best decisions for the long term. Our planning is based on the expectations and social responsibility of our customers. It's a holistic approach across the organisation and we understand the impact of our decisions. THE FUTURE OF ASSET MANAGEMENT -- HOW DO WE GET THERE? To get to where we want our asset management system to be in ve years' time, we have to learn to leverage technology, writes David Robinson from asset management solutions company, Assetic.
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