Asset Management is essential to running an effective municipality. Earlier this year, we discussed what Asset Management is and how municipalities can benefit. In this post, we will dig a little deeper and uncover the keys to Asset Management success.
The following key principles are the basic, and fundamental propositions that serve as the foundations of Asset Management. Regardless of how an Asset Management plan is constructed, the following principles should always be kept in mind:
Assets Support Municipal Objectives – Municipal governments can strategically invest in assets to progress their municipal objectives. Appropriately managing assets based on objectives allows municipalities to use their assets in the most effective way possible.
Asset Management is a “Way of Thinking” – Asset Management is not a report or a software system. It is a learned mindset that allows administrators to get the most value out of a municipal asset, as efficiently as possible. It ensures that ratepayers receive the appropriate level of use from a municipal asset while minimizing the cost.
Asset Management is the Great Evaluator – the principles of Asset Management are most effective when considering trade-offs. Although Asset Management reporting is important, the true value from the implementation of Asset Management comes to the forefront when evaluating two options that require investment and deciding which one to pursue.
It is a Continuous Process – Asset Management is not stagnant. It is a process whereby plans and systems are continuously refined and improved. No matter where a Municipality starts in their Asset Management journey, their goal should be to focus on getting better today and tomorrow.
Prioritization is Key – No Asset Management system will ever be “complete”. Municipalities must prioritize the assets that warrant the most attention, based on their importance to the municipality.
It Takes a Multi-disciplinary Approach – Asset Management expertise should not be confined to one department within a government. Each service area in a municipality needs to be knowledgeable on Asset Management principles so that they can work together to build a comprehensive view of how to best manage municipal assets.
Asset Management is Fit for Purpose – Not all municipal Asset Management Plans will be the same. Plans should be built to fit the requirements of the municipality, and therefore will be different between municipalities. For example, a small town may be focused on different priorities than a sprawling rural municipality.
“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”
Our advice is always to start today – no matter where your starting point is. Asset Management Planning is not a one-time project, but rather a continuous process that evolves over time. So, whether you are a municipality that has a full Asset Management Plan in place or a municipality that doesn’t have any asset information, the goal remains the same; make your Asset Management Plan better today, than it was yesterday.
MuniSight helps you facilitate continuous improvement of your Asset Management Plan, no matter where you are at in the process. Our solution highlights missing information, to enable any municipality to focus on gathering the information that matters. In fact, we recommend gathering asset information over a long time period, instead of feeling the need to gather all possible information before you start.