Asset management, where to start ?

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18 Jun, 2020

You are convinced that asset management will provide you with an efficient methodological structuring of your physical real estate assets (co-ownerships, communities, etc.) or infrastructure assets (rail, road, aeronautics, etc.) and better decision-making support, but you don’t know where to start ? A reliable asset database is the foundation on which any strategy is based. Find out how to tailor it to your needs in three steps !

Step 1 : Identify and classify

An asset – a building (e.g., school), group of buildings (e.g., school complex), even an outdoor site (playground), infrastructure (e.g., road) or even a process (e.g., luggage sorting) – is defined above all by the value it brings, hence the importance of carefully determining its contours in order to categorize it accurately. Establishing the framework of your heritage is therefore the first challenge of your approach. The following three guidelines, forged on our solid experience and the support of project owners in their missions, will help you take this first step.

  • Refine and optimize your bill of material by using both asset management reference classifications and those in use in your business area. They are always organized according to a hierarchical principle of a “Russian dolls” type tree structure and around two main aspects: – physical and technical, in other words, the functionalities of the assets ; – organizational, i.e. the functions and uses.
  • Choose a level of detail (LOD : Level Of Detail : spatial, geometrical, organizational, by operational unit, site, building, premises, technical components, etc.) and information (LOI : Level Of Information : attributes, properties, operating and maintenance procedures, record of the work carried out, etc.) that is in line with the stakes! Too much detail or information is as damaging and useless as the reverse.
  • Keep in mind that this data structuring must allow you to realistically reproduce your way of working, of intervening on your assets, and your use of space (workflow), both immediately and for future exercises. As one of the objectives of asset management is to produce more or less long-term orientations and action plans, the nomenclature must also be used to ensure data processing, data flow (datastream) and information transmission in bottom-up and top-down top-down modes.

Step 2 : Structure and Homogenize

Once the framework of the asset list and its registry are determined and formalized, it is now necessary to identify your assets by centralizing the existing databases within your organization. This is where the main difficulty of the process often arises: structuring the data and creating an inventory of the asset portfolio. Indeed, depending on the people you are dealing with, the scope may differ, expand, overlap, or have different characteristics (name, surface area, location, etc.), with each department working with the ones it needs. For example, the finance department refers to the insured areas, the town planning department uses the parcel areas from the land register, while the technical departments are interested in the floor area of the building. These are all elements that need to be homogenized in order to draw up a single heritage register, which is the indispensable basis for constructing reliable and reproducible information over time.

Step 3 : Retrieve and Centralize

Your assets are accompanied by numerous and formalized information (documentary or oral documents). And this last step consists in determining :

  • Data and their attributes relevant to asset management (date of construction, area, use, location, associated expenses, etc.),
  • Their reliability (date, source, evolution, etc.),
  • The missing information and how to identify it (interviews, additional studies carried out by your teams or external service providers, consultation of archives, etc.).

The data recovery process is valuable and their centralization is necessary to make them alive within an ecosystem of digital tools, whether it is a simple spreadsheet or an asset management software. Editing, processing and exporting data must therefore be taken into account, as well as the collaborative aspect of the tool (sharing between the different departments) with vigilance regarding modification rights, to maintain monitoring and quality over time. For the information to be robust, it is important to validate the level of reliability by observing the completeness and accuracy of regularly implemented and updated data. Likewise, the interoperability of your tool with specific business software is a guarantee that the information will be used and updated.

The three key steps to building your asset base, the fundamental structure for any asset management strategy.

To accompany you, tbmaestro, as a trusted third party, and based on its experience as a consultant and the feedback of its many clients, project owners, has designed and developed this type of tool to manage your asset list and its referencing register : the myA software from the 3t Software Suite. 100% web-based, simple, intuitive and dynamic, it adapts to all organizations and centralizes your assets and all the information associated with them in one place, accessible simultaneously for all your employees. myA can also be coupled with the implementation of your existing asset base, its data and associated documents across your entire asset base.

Building up and making a reliable asset database, through knowledge of your asset portfolio and the centralization of related information, is the first step in an asset management process. Decision support through performance indicators, the implementation of a strategy and an action plan, monitoring of the asset life cycle, human resources management, various agreements and contracts as well as risks, are all levers of asset management based on your asset list and its referencing register. It is therefore essential to be able to implement, monitor and update them because the data from these tools are the reliable foundation leading to the development of your propertymaster plan and your regular maintenance plan.

Contact us for more details.


Keywords : Asset management, Physical assets, Asset database, Information, Real estate assets, Asset management tool, Asset portfolio, Asset management software, myA, Real Estate Master Plan, Maintenance plan

Article date : 18/06/2020

Editors : Nina Bouaziz, Jean-Pascal Foucault

References :

ISO 55000 : 2014 – Gestion d’actifs

ISO 16739 : 2013 – Classes de fondation d’industrie (IFC) pour le partage des données dans le secteur de la construction et de la gestion des installations

ISO 29481-1 : 2016 – Building information models – Information delivery manual – Part 1: Methodology and format

ASTM E1557 – 09 – Standard Classification for Building Elements and Related Sitework – UNIFORMAT II

ASTM E3035 – 15 – Standard Classification for Facility Asset Component Tracking System (FACTS)

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