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The current landscape of asset management can be a labyrinth of new standards and evolving processes and technologies. Here, Steve Doran, Director of Infrastream and Chair of the Asset Management Council’s Sydney Chapter, outlines some of the most pressing challenges and opportunities that asset managers face in 2018.

Steve Doran.

According to Steve Doran, the one critical factor asset managers need to take into account is the adaptability of their asset plans.

“Societal shifts from technological advancement are very hard to predict, and so our challenge is to create asset management methods that sustain value over the long lifecycle of critical assets.”

In addition, asset managers must know how to accurately convey what asset management is and isn’t.

“Common misunderstandings about asset management are that it’s the same as maintenance management, or that it doesn’t require attention until the asset is acquired,” Mr Doran said.

In reality, asset management is a multi-faceted process that involves a range of work disciplines, including planning, economics, stakeholder management, information management and safety.

“The most important stage for asset management is before the lifecycle of the physical asset, where the true value to the stakeholder can be understood, risks can be assessed, and design for maintainability and operability can be effectively influenced,” Mr Doran said.

Asset management isn’t as simple as trying to squeeze the most efficiency or effectiveness out of an asset. The underlying priority should be alignment with stakeholder value requirements.

“True asset management might mean having no asset, or replacing it with a completely different solution,” Mr Doran said.

While challenges in asset management are formidable, they are balanced against sizable opportunities. One advantage lies in the steadily increasing global attention that asset management receives, due in large part to the shared language of ISO 5500x.

“The ISO 5500x suite of asset management standards is creating the platform for a common language as it gathers momentum internationally,” Mr Doran said. “This shared language greatly facilitates the exchange of ideas, information, stories and knowledge about what brings the highest value in asset management.”

“Governments and authorities responsible for delivering, operating, maintaining and regulating critical infrastructure are realising that asset value is far more greatly expanded and gained using a whole-of-lifecycle approach, and they are forming directions accordingly,” Mr Doran said.

“As asset management techniques are incorporated more into early planning and concept design stages, significant value improvements unfold over the working lives of assets.”

For those that are interested in hearing from Mr Doran about asset management strategies, he will be MC for Asset Management for Critical Infrastructure, running from 12–13 September at the Swissôtel in Sydney.

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