In the previous post “Important Advice in Developing Your Asset Management Plan,” Heather mentioned that using a consultant to fill a gap or plug a hole you have is a better way to go than to contract out the whole plan and hope that that’s going to make the change.
Ross provides further advice on the best way to conduct infrastructure asset management planning.
Yeah. I think I had a small laugh to myself there because in New Zealand we have a mandatory requirement to do these.
By far and the way, the best way to do asset planning is to do your own thinking.
Get some help around the structure from EFC Network or from Heather. Get some help around step 1 to 15, or whatever it is that you’re looking at.
If you outsource your thinking, then somebody else will do your thinking – but in New Zealand, every single cycle of plans we end up doing some… my business ends up doing some because people can’t organize themselves to get them done on time.
So there’s that catch-22 – but my first advice would be, get help when you need it like what Heather is saying, but make sure you do ask your own questions and do your own thinking because that’s where the learning takes place.
And that’s where you get the insights and can change things. Your own team will know or yourself will know your own system more intimately than anybody else.
Heather: So it’s sort of one of these – buyer beware. Be careful.
Ross: Well try that first and if you get bogged down then go get some more help because…
Heather: Just try to be a wise consumer. So…
Ross: Smart buyer, we say.
Yeah exactly. So certainly stay involved. Be very intimately connected and make sure that what you’re getting created is going to fit the way you think, the way you want the outcomes to be, the culture of the organization etc. because it doesn’t work well if somebody comes up with something and it’s completely against the culture of your organization. It’s not going to go well.
It’s like putting the square peg into a round hole kind of thing and you want the round peg that fits you.
So get the help you need but look through the gaps and don’t just plan on outsourcing the whole thing because it may appear to be easy, but in the end, it won’t help you.
The whole point of infrastructure asset management is not to create a plan, it’s to change the behavior and get benefits from that behavior change and you’ll miss out on the good parts by just getting a plan that won’t be implemented.
So just make sure you stay involved and get the benefits out of it.
PHOTO CREDIT: Hawks Nest Bridge, West Virginia by Gene via Flickr Creative Commons License.