At its core, asset management is a practice by which utilities manage their assets, such as pipes, pumps, and people, to reduce maintenance and operational costs while consistently meeting desired levels of service. The maintenance of public infrastructure is ongoing, and asset management can help utilities justifiably plan when to maintain, update, and replace critical assets as well as increase operational efficiency.
Successful asset management also functions as a means of obtaining sustainable infrastructure. By implementing an asset management program that includes details on asset inventories such as criticality, condition, and age as well as long-range capital planning and proactive operational and maintenance tasks, utilities can make intelligent decisions on the most efficient schedules for asset rehabilitation or replacement and planned maintenance while adhering to their limited budgets.
An effective asset management plan accomplishes the following objectives:
- Reduce operational and capital expenditures
- Maintain adequate levels of service
- Meet all regulatory requirements
- Increase system sustainability
- Prolong life of critical assets
- Improve decision-making on asset repair, rehabilitation, or replacement
- Set rates based on logical financial and operational planning
- Justify budgets with focus on system performance, critical assets, and service levels
- Improve safety and security of assets as well as emergency responses
Asset management programs focus on system best practices and include information on minimum life-cycle costs, required sustainable levels of service, critical assets for sustained performance, long-term financial planning and funding, and current state of critical assets. Due to its scalable approach, asset management programs should be implemented by all water, wastewater, stormwater, and public works systems, regardless of size.
Tata & Howard has extensive experience with all facets of asset management planning and programming. Our services focus on condition assessment and analyses of critical assets as well as operational evaluations, management training, and long-term capital planning.