So this is from this paper a year ago. The reason I produced it was, we were getting, I think in our industry, the practitioners, they’re getting in a situation, where they’re going through those manuals and there was too much information and too much complexity.
And what I wanted to do is to say to people that they’re getting so buried in technical complexity, which engineers love doing. That you’re missing the big pictures and the big trends. You need to pull back up and simplify a bit.
So this is me saying, hey, we are getting too complex. There are some places you have to. You might need to model or something but you don’t need to all the time.
Asset inventory as a basic requisite
And so what the first assumption that I didn’t show in this slide is that down at the bottom or at the top is that you’ve got a really really good asset inventory.
So you know what you’ve got and you know what conditions it’s in, and you know how it is performing.
So that was a baseline assumption that I didn’t bother putting on the slide but just know it’s there.
You must know what you’ve got before you can. To a degree, I mean you start very loose information but as you get into it, that you need good inventories and you need good condition and performance information on your assets.
What are Levels of Service
There are three components. So, lifecycle asset management is the engine room of an asset plan.
But there are three things that modify or change it or you need to consider before you consider your lifecycle management.
And the first one critically – is levels of service. And I’m going to give you a few examples of that in future slides but the reality that levels of service are that this is what you are trying to deliver to your community. This is what people are paying for.
So you need to know, and often they are set by the government, or by a permit or a license, or by a national service standard, whatever.
So often it’s you don’t get a lot of choice on them but you do need to know what you’re trying to deliver because that’s what you’re measuring everything against.
And at the end of the day, all of the lifecycle management and everything else is, so you go, we’re delivering that level of service.
And when we first started these things 20 years ago, with levels of service, all we did was we wrote down what we were doing – because before that there’ll be no such thing as levels of service.
So what are all the things we do on a road or what is all the things we do on our utility, or what is all the things we do with a facility or a park or whatever?
So they started at hey, this is what our current practice is essential. And then from there, they’ve developed. Well, that’s fine but what do the people actually want?
And say you can go through that and then you go well people want everything and they don’t want to pay anything. So I want the world, and I don’t want to pay for it.
And we do customer surveys and got those sorts of answers. Oh, I want a road that’s so smooth that I’d never heard my car tires turning but I don’t want to pay anything. Well, oh now we’ve got a problem.
So the thing is that you get this disconnect between willingness to pay and affordability in service levels. There’s always a tension, it doesn’t matter where you are.
And so then it’s just working your way through that in getting a series of service levels that people are happy with and also prepared to pay for.