In the previous post, Ross and Heather tackled the question on asset inventory.
Discussing further, Ross and Heather give tips and examples on how to do asset inventory efficiently.
Yes, I mean a good example of that sort of thing is pumps.
So, if you’ve got a small pump set and you replace that pump set as a unit. If it fails, the motor, the impellers, everything just comes out, and you drop a new one in.
Then you only need one bit of an inventory to say, we’ve got this type of pump with the sort of impeller, and it’s “x” amount of years old in this condition.
If you’ve got, let’s say a $100,000-pump with a large motor in it and a shaft and a separate impeller system and maybe reasonably complicated variable speed drive. And you’re going to replace those components separately over time. You might replace the impeller three times before you replace the motor, whatever it is.
Then you would hold them as separate inventory items. So, you’d say, we’ve got the motor, we’ve got the shaft, we’ve got the impeller, we’ve got the VSD, and that makes perfect sense.
But what you don’t want to do is to hold that sort of information on a $2,000-pump set. When it breaks, you’re going to put another one in. That’s the end of the story.
The massive pump sets, yes, you break them up a little bit more. So, that’s sort of rule of thumb.
And the same sort of thing with pipes. How do you replace pipes in your particular authority? Do you do it block to block? If it’s a certain length, that might start providing some guidance as to how you record the pipes, the reticulations.
It’s often, how do you replace will give you an excellent indication as to what level of detailed inventory you need to go down to.
And then we have some questions of basically how you get started creating an asset inventory as a registry, you know, the best way to organize that registry.
So that gets into, where are you going to put the data? How are you going to collect it?
And as I mentioned before with the mapping comment earlier is, there are a lot of apps that you can put on tablets and phones that help you collect information that can be customized to meet your needs.
So that you can literally span it in front of the piece of equipment, answer some questions about it, who’s the manufacturer, what’s the horsepower.
Take a photo. Take a video if you want. Record audio if you wish. Get location from satellites.
It’s super easy to do a lot of that now with apps, and you can start simple with either Excel spreadsheet or Access database if you know how to program databases.
But just a simple spreadsheet will get you a lot of the way, and that can be exported to something else later. That’s a right starting place to get you started with the spreadsheet; what’s the critical information I want, what will help me manage the asset in the future.
If I know certain things, will that help me manage the asset later? If they don’t help me manage it later, I probably don’t need that bit of information.
And look, ten years ago, pre-iPhone, we would do a lot of that on pieces of paper.
If you are a tiny utility, you got 15 miles of pipe or something lesser than that; maybe you will still do that on a piece of paper.
But generally, I would say to people now, try to do that on a tablet or a phone so that you are cutting out the double handling on the paper. There’s not a lot of need to do that.