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What is An Asset Framework?

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Asset framework refers to a tool that allows one to model a physical or logical object in the way that best suits how one views those assets and their associated data. It consists of a range of components or elements that demonstrate the relationship between objects and organise them in a way that aligns with an organisation’s business needs.  Taken in another way, it provides a meta-data structure with all data in the organisation, allowing users to create hierarchical, asset-centric models of objects and equipment grouped by specific relationships. This blog will explain all that you need to know about an asset framework.

Why Do You Need an Asset Framework?

There are many reasons why companies adopt a clear asset framework. The most common reason is to ensure that the asset management system subsequently implemented is most relevant to a company’s needs. Hence, an asset framework is necessary for the asset management solution to be successfully implemented. 

An asset framework looks into the long-term performance of the company. Hence, taking the time to plan and detail one is said to improve efficiencies, effectiveness and the overall performance of the organisation whilst meeting business objectives.  For one thing, an asset framework can help you to create relationships between assets by unifying all data. It can also have multiple representations of an asset and allows users to create commonalities with different objects. It moreover requires you to think of a process that helps you to update when scaling up, for instance.

Things to Keep in Mind When Making an Asset Framework for the Utility Industry

According to the industry, a typical asset framework may differ. Here are some of the most critical components of an asset framework:

Knowing Your Current State

When making an asset framework, it is first essential to understand the current state of your assets. Asset-centric companies must first assess what challenges they are facing. Are random breakdowns occurring occasionally, leading to increased downtimes? If you are a utility company, especially this could be detrimental as such industries rarely consider downtime in terms of profit. Rather, in such industries, asset breakdown leads to the public being subjected to risk. By identifying key challenges, you have an ongoing measurement to compare, analyse and consider whether the solution you later adopt is sufficient. 

Identifying Long-Term Goals

Once you accurately recognise your current system to manage your assets, your framework should consider the long-term goals. The end goals or objectives in the utility industry could be quite general. It can be as simple as saving finances, strengthening or lengthening the life cycle of assets, and ensuring quality standards are met. At the same time, taking steps to not sacrifice quantity over quality is essential in sectors like the water industry. Additionally, reducing the emissions released and reducing your carbon footprint are other long-term goals that should be inserted.

Leave Margin for Error

While the end goal of any asset management strategy is to eliminate all errors, it is in your best interest to anticipate the probability and consequence of failure. Once this is made, a backup plan gives you space to recover much faster. Looking at multiple contingency plans to save more energy, more costs, and decrease waste also gives the flexibility to change approaches when required. In other words, this is a futuristic way to ensure your asset management plan does not go to waste. Alternatively, finding one solution that offers the flexibility of accommodating multiple options is a great way of understanding the requirements you are looking for when finding a vendor.

Make Sure There is Enough Funding for the Long Term

There are multiple situations where asset managers have had ambitious ideas but have had to stop their efforts due to a lack of funds. This heightens the need to consider not only the finances that will be needed for the next five years but also to consider further ahead. Adding up costs that you will need to operate, replace and improve the progress of asset management is important. While having a financial analyst is recommended, a more reliable alternative is to invest in a solution that infuses analytical capabilities to provide futuristic insights.

Considering the Life Expectancy of Your Assets

The life expectancy of your assets is critical to how cost-effective or intensive your processors will be. To ensure your assets are in optimal performance, a mechanism to monitor asset conditions must be in place. Instead of adopting a manual system looking at a digital solution that can automate this process would be beneficial, more productive and will maximise labour utilisation. Another angle to consider in this respect is to construct more sustainable assets that are durable. This may influence you to invest in technologies like digital twins. Simulation technology for example allows you to carry out multiple what-if situations, allowing you to create assets that can withstand any adverse conditions.

Think Ahead

As a utility organisation, creating an asset framework can help you to have consistency and clarity across your organisation. Unlock valuable data insights to drive smarter decision-making and empower utilities to maintain consistent, adequate service levels to meet consumer demand. Prepare yourself to meet all asset challenges in the best way possible by first identifying your current challenges. Step back and make a detailed plan on how you hope to address them through an asset management solution. With an asset framework, find the perfect solution to monitor and maintain assets, whilst ensuring quality, quantity, environmental and safety standards are met. 

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