Recently, a lot of what we have been working on is from the fallout from audits on asset data. We see different businesses spending so much time looking for data or, realising much too late, that their data doesn’t quite tell them what they need to know.
For us, data is one of the most valuable assets a business can have. Data helps you make good business decisions, helps you plan your work efficiently, helps you manage risk, helps you understand what needs to be done and helps you understand where money should be spent and can be saved. It seems that we see more of the outcomes from poor asset data management though these days. Confusion on what needs to be done, duplication of work, poor audit scores, out of date data and too much chasing after required asset data….sometimes months after the works were done.
Businesses need to start investing into data management strategies that reach further than just asking people to not store files on their desktops. A healthy data savvy culture needs to be adopted by all teams, operationally and commercially. Everyone in the business needs to know what asset data the business holds and where it can be found. Hold workshops to explain what the asset data is based on, where it comes from and how to keep it updated and in real time.
Nothing is more frustrating than seeing a business invest in really good asset capture surveys only for the data to be captured in Word, filed on the server and no changes from variations or lifecycle replacements entered. The data fast becomes out of date and because of this no one uses it. The whole exercise needs to be repeated every few years at such a high cost to businesses.
At Nine Acres we are in the process of coming up with an asset management data platform which can be used by the whole business and it’s stakeholders. Asset management, commercial and compliance data is held all in one place, governed by robust processes which can be made bespoke to each client. It’s easy to use, easy to extract data from and acts as a risk register and task management tool. Literally everything you need to know about an asset the system would hold including all the financial forecasting until concession end.
Let’s make audits a less daunting event. Let’s make them, what they were intended to be, a way of spotting the odd area for improvement and to be a knowledge share platform where best practices can be shared. Not an exercise that generates months of tail chasing and demoralises the workforce. The answer, we think, is by improving how we manage data which will naturally lead to best practice service delivery.
TOP 5 TIPS FOR MANAGING ASSET DATA
1 – Understand the end goal! What do you need the data to tell you?
Don’t rush the answer to this one. What do you need to know? How do you need to report it? Who will need to access it? This determines what type of data you collect and how you collect it.
2 – Collect as much relevant data as you can first time round!
Engage with the wider team. Take the time to find out if other teams need similar data or information from the same source. Double the visit, double the cost!
3 – Store your data in a robust platform
Put your data in a platform which is going to make it easy for you to access and for you to extract from. Ensure you can present the data in various formats. Some people prefer data in tables whilst others like graphs.
4 – Communicate, then communicate more! Who knows what data you have and where it is stored?
Data is only helpful when people know what data you have and where to find it. Non sensitive data should always be easy to locate and access
5 – PROTECT, PROTECT, PROTECT! Don’t let your data get out of date or go missing
Ensure your data is in real time by creating robust processes to capture future changes. Limit editing rights of users to reduce data being deleted or formulas being overridden
Nine Acres is excited to be working on a new Asset Management Software Solution covering:
ASSET DATA, COMPLIANCE, RISK & FINANCE MODULES
✓ The new system will hold all your business asset data in one platform ensuring that the system is used by asset management, operational, compliance, finance and senior management teams. Everyone can work off the same data.
✓ Your bespoke business processes can be integrated into the platform to ensure the data is protected and in real time.
✓ Easy to use and simple to produce reports, tables and graphs for all different types of data reporting.