Professional facility management isn’t just looking over a few assets – it’s much more than that. Most building management professionals are skilled in the development and implementation of strategies that help move the company forward. This takes knowledge, expertise, and an in-depth understanding of integrated facility management. Most companies or owners do not understand the logistical portion of building management until they run into issues attempting to handle everything themselves.
In most cases, having a facilities management company at the forefront ready and able to handle the different aspects of an asset equipment lifecycle is invaluable. There are 4 stages of an asset equipment lifecycle, and getting through it can be tedious.
Let’s take a look at the four stages:
You can’t move without this first stage. To move forward, you must know what equipment you have and how it contributes to the bottom line. During this phase, there is an assessment of all resources and equipment to evaluate what’s working and what isn’t. This is the time where decisions are made regarding replacements and continued needs to keep the company progressing. This also entails making sure resources are in place and available; identification of underperforming assets or assets that should be removed occurs; preventative maintenance checks are being conducted; and estimates on potential funding to replace assets is in place. Extensive research is consistently needed for comparisons of any available options.
2. Purchase and Acquisition
Once research data is collected, it’s important to make sure building management has the resources in place for the purchase and acquisition of new assets. What are the associated costs? What are the requirements? The considerations must be factored into the equation to ensure every decision and transaction is cost effective.
Every department must work together in some capacity to ensure cohesiveness. The procurement department works within their department to find the best suppliers and pricing. The initial investment costs, and the asset’s total cost of ownership must be factored in for cost analysis. Once the new asset is installed within the facility, it must be added to the fixed asset register and building infrastructure management software for accuracy of records.
3. Operation and Maintenance
It’s no secret – a building cannot fully operate without operation and maintenance. A facility management company works behind the scenes to make sure all operational and maintenance activities are performed and tracked. In most cases, there is a database of information where the new asset will be stored, unless there is a glitch or change in systems. It is the responsibility of a building management team to ensure all assets work properly at all times. This is call preventative maintenance, and a specialised team usually handles these areas. This includes specialised cleaning on a periodic basis, inspections and regular maintenance duties.
When considering this stage, most building management teams consider three sections: repair, rehabilitate and replace. All three should be timely to ensure the operation remains highly functional at all times.
4. Renew or Dispose
Assets have different lifecycles, .but can still function properly even if they have to be removed based on the data and lifespan information gathered. The lapse in efficiency will show over time if not addressed. As with anything, an assets approaching or surpassing their expected lifecycle will start to exhibit signs of war and tear. In some cases, the asset just fails. When production is halted due to ineffective efficiency standards, the entire organisation is affected – and not in a positive way.
Using asset management software keeps track of the different assets and their recommended removal dates to ensure there is no lapse in service. Many companies seek to do repairs rather than replace, but ultimately, if it will cost most to repair than replace, the logical decision would be to go ahead and replace the asset before it causes more harm, and disposing of the original asset. This is also called decommission. Once an asset has been decommissioned, the lifecycle is complete and everything starts over at stage 1.
Should you be concerned about asset life cycles?
Absolutely. By keeping track of your various assets through a life cycle management program, the facilities department will be able to utilise life cycle data as a tool of advantage. How is this possible? Here are a few ways:
- Defining the assets and its condition
Having a good asset management program allows the facility management team to record all pertinent information on an asset such as the installation date, condition and how the asset will be cost effective to the company. The data can also be used to estimate lifespan and total cost.
- Supporting a proactive maintenance cycle
Life cycle management keeps a business in tune with their machinery. By effectively using proactive maintenance, organisations will be better equipped to plan for failures and other scenarios, being ahead of the curve on maintenance and replacement.
- Support regulatory compliance
Life cycle data can be collected and utilised by the building management software. Time consuming but worthwhile, organisations will be able to react quickly in detecting any issues that may become a regulatory problem.
- Prioritisation of machinery equipment and replacements
The facility management team will have a capital budget to ensure everything is in top shape. It is one of the most crucial parts of building maintenance. Being prepared is always key and a major contributor to the efficiency and effectiveness of an organisation.All these components are part of a bigger picture. Hiring a professional facility management team helps ensure your property and brand protected while keeping your operations in order. Do you have an integrated facility team on board to keep things running smoothly? If not, it may be time to call in a facilities management company to get and keep things right.