All assets will inevitably wear down over time, which can affect both their functionality and value. In cases where assets are too run down or broken to use anymore, maintenance is usually carried out.
However, no one wants too much maintenance to occur — it costs money after all — so it’s vital for companies to optimize their asset usage to avoid major financial loss.
Asset optimization should enhance the efficiency of your operations to ensure you don’t lose too much money or time to equipment failures and downtime, amongst other things. One of the key aspects to optimizing your assets involves workflow automation, which can be achieved through BlueTally.
Now let’s discuss the process behind asset optimization in more detail.
What is Asset Optimization?
Asset optimization is where you find the best ways to use your assets in favor of the company. This process focuses on improving efficiency and stability — assets should be utilized in a way that extends their lifespan without compromising any operations.
For example, instead of relying on one piece of equipment for something, why not use two of them to share the load? This can help reduce wear and tear whilst retaining the same level of efficiency. Optimizing your assets can also result in less downtime and the need for maintenance.
Goals of Asset Optimization
Ultimately, your goal is to manage an asset’s life cycle and get the most out of it during its operational life. This includes:
- Reducing maintenance costs
- Improving depreciation rates
- Automating workflows
- Increasing work efficiency
Each stage should be carefully observed — from procurement all the way to disposal, where assets are discarded. Asset optimization has many aspects, such as asset tracking, maintenance, and audits. BlueTally can aid you in streamlining these workflows — you can easily monitor the location of your assets, schedule maintenance or audits, and much more.
Asset management software can help speed up time-consuming tasks, like asset reviews and depreciation reports, elevating overall efficiency. Make sure the tool you choose to deploy is suitable for your business and supports asset optimization.
Why is Asset Optimization Important?
Asset optimization can decrease equipment failure chances, resulting in less downtime. There should be fewer disruptions to your operations, making your service more reliable to customers. Check the effectiveness of your optimization strategy by viewing statuses in your asset register — they should tell you which assets are broken or archived.
Prolong the Life of Each Asset
Optimization can extend the life cycle of an asset. If you manage your equipment efficiently, you can prevent major asset failures. For example, conducting regular maintenance checks and making small repairs so a piece of equipment never gets to the point of breaking down entirely.
Regularly checking your equipment allows you to spot any damage early on to quickly fix the problem before it worsens. If an asset can avoid large amounts of damage, it’s less likely to become inoperative, thereby extending its lifespan.
Optimizing your assets means saving money on maintenance. Each time a piece of equipment is repaired or replaced, it costs you a certain amount of money. If you reduce the frequency of those repairs, you can avoid buying new parts or upgrades.
You can view changelogs on your asset management software to see how often each asset gets repaired — use it as a benchmark and aim to improve it during optimization.
How to Efficiently Optimize Your Assets
Now that you’re aware of what asset optimization entails, it’s time to learn how to carry out the process yourself.
Step 1: Utilizing Software for Asset Optimization
An important part of optimizing your assets is finding ways to automate and streamline your operations. Luckily, you can satisfy these quandaries by utilizing asset management software — they simplify tasks, such as scheduling maintenance and tracking assets, aiming to make your workload much easier to complete.
BlueTally is a great example of such software — the user-friendly asset management tool eliminates the need for spreadsheets. Instead, we quicken the documentation and organizational process using various features:
- Cloning Assets
- Bulk Editing
- Search Engine
- Sorting & Filters
With a more visually-appealing interface to work with, asset management processes become much more seamless. For example, asset statuses are color-coded so you can tell at a glance which ones are unavailable or checked out.
Step 2: Create an Asset Register
Once you’ve found a suitable asset management software, it’s time to begin the optimization process. Firstly, you must create an asset register — this is essentially a list of all the assets you currently own. Include details such as:
- Asset Name & ID Number
- Product Type & Supplier
- Purchase Date & Cost
- Status & Condition
- Location & Department
- Serial Number & Warranty Expiration Date
You can also include any extra details you think are relevant, such as life expectancy and depreciation. Asset registers help you monitor and keep track of your assets. For instance, asset details can be updated, so you can quickly identify when it’s moved location or broken down without having to check the asset in person.
How to Create an Asset Register
Before creating an asset register, you should have a list of assets to reference — if you don’t have one that’s up-to-date, do an inventory check and note down each asset, along with any important information (e.g., their condition, location, etc.). Once you’ve got a list ready, launch your asset management software and create a new asset.
On BlueTally, we give you a simple form to fill out, which includes details like asset name and purchase cost. You can choose from a series of suggestions for some sections, such as status and location. If none are to your liking, add a custom option.
Assign Assets & Check-in/Checkout: Assets in the register can be checked in or out by other staff members — you can easily keep track of who’s using the asset by viewing the checkout log. There’s also the option to set a return date so others know when it’ll be sent back to its original location.
Kits: You can also create kits, which group certain assets together to make it easier to checkout multiple assets at once. This keeps you from having to manually check out each asset individually, which can be time-consuming.
Step 3: Conduct Regular Asset Reviews
After completing your asset register, remember to conduct regular asset reviews to ensure your information stays accurate. Schedule asset audits (i.e. inventory checks) ahead of time so employees have time to prepare for each one.
Regular audits help you quickly identify missing or broken equipment — this way, you can make plans to replace or fix them before they start hindering your operations. You can also take this opportunity to reassess your asset budgeting and depreciation.
Each piece of equipment has a value attached to them, along with upkeep costs. Depending on their usefulness, selling or insuring them may be more beneficial than continuing to repair them.
How to Perform Audits
Schedule an audit on BlueTally to make everyone aware of the upcoming event. Notifications will be sent out when audits are overdue. You can repeat this process for maintenance schedules to make them easy to track.
Audits simply consist of updating the existing information on your asset register to reflect the current state of your inventory. Make sure every asset is accounted for — any missing assets should be tagged with the ‘lost’ status. You can perform audits on BlueTally by clicking on each asset — input:
- Asset Location
- Employee (who performed the audit)
- Audit Date
- Next Audit Date
- Extra Notes (if applicable)
If you’re struggling to place an asset, check its checkout history or changelog to see who last dealt with the asset.
Step 4: Use a Life Cycle-Based Approach
Approach your optimization with an asset’s life cycle in mind. Each life cycle consists of a series of stages — begin by identifying each one.
Here are some example life cycle stages:
- Maintenance or Management
Every stage requires things like budgeting and communication, so start optimizing these aspects. Once every stage has been optimized, your asset management as a whole should improve.
Step 5: Designate a Team Member to Manage Assets
Now that you’ve broken down each asset’s life cycle and made plans to increase their efficiency, it’s time to designate team members to handle each process. Pick a team leader for each one, and make them in charge of overseeing those operations. It should be someone responsible, organized, and responsive who fully understands your optimization strategies.
Assets should be utilized to their full potential in order to best benefit your company, which is why optimizing your operations is so vital. The aim is to enhance your work efficiency to save you both money and time whilst maintaining the same (or greater) level of quality with your operations.
A big part of asset optimization is streamlining workflows, which is where BlueTally comes into play. We provide you with many powerful tools to help automate your asset management, such as asset cloning, scheduling audits, and much more. Take a look at our demo to try out our features, or sign up for free today to get started.