Tag: Asset Management

Hoyle, Tanner Engineers Showcase their Knowledge of Asset Management

Asset Management

On September 20, John Jackman, PE and Rychel Gibson, PE will be presenting on the basics of an asset management system at the Sunday River Grand Summit Resort Hotel & Conference Center in Newry, Maine, as part of the Maine Water Environment Association’s fall convention.

The focus of their presentation will be the documentation, organization and data collection for physical assets using tools like Google Forms. By using Google tools  (Drive, Calendar, Maps, and Forms), users can input data for free from a computer, tablet or phone. Among other tasks, John and Rychel will demonstrate how to use Google Forms to fill out daily logs and inspection sheets, and how to use Google Maps to document and track GPS assets.

Physical assets – like pipes, pumps, and valves — can be stressed from over-use, underfunding, and aging. It is the responsibility of the asset manager to know when an asset has reached its useful life. Over the past two decades, practical, advanced techniques have been developed for better managing physical assets. Hoyle, Tanner has assisted close to 40 municipalities, counties and state agencies with their asset management plans system. John Jackman has been involved with asset management for 16 years and joined the New England Water Environment Association in 2004. Rychel is a member of the Maine Water Environment Association and has been integrally involved with developing freeware-based asset management assistance during her time with Hoyle, Tanner.

 

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Are you ready for the new NH MS4 Stormwater Permit?

Pond with lily pads

EPA Region 1 issued the revised New Hampshire Small MS4 General Permit on January 18, 2017. Affecting 60 New Hampshire communities, this new permit will make a significant change in stormwater management compliance when it takes effect on July 1, 2018.

This new permit imposes more stringent regulations for communities’ compliance in regards to how to manage stormwater.

Many community leaders have expressed concerns that the overlap with other regulatory requirements and the cost of meeting those requirements may not effectively achieve the desired results, and they are looking for integrated cost-effective approaches to meeting the new regulatory requirements.

Governor Chris Sununu has publicly spoken against the new MS4 permits, saying that they would severely impact municipalities and taxpayers, noting that “additional mandates contained within the new MS4 permit will prove themselves overly burdensome and enormously expensive for many of New Hampshire’s communities.”

If you live in community in Southern New Hampshire, chances are that this change affects you in some way. To see a list of affected communities, please visit the EPA website.

Hoyle, Tanner has experienced staff who are knowledgeable about asset management, SRF loan pre-application preparation, and MS4 permitting.

John Jackman, PE, asset management specialist

 

John Jackman, PE, is Hoyle, Tanner’s premier Asset Management Specialist. Although the CWSRF money cannot be directly used to support the MS4 program, using the asset management program to support documentation of municipal assets will be helpful in setting up a strategy for compliance related to the October 1, 2018 required filing date of the MS4 permit’s Notice of Intent.

 

Michael Trainque, PE, stormwater specialist

 

Michael Trainque, PE, has 39 years of environmental engineering experience.  Michael has been integrally involved in developing model stormwater regulations, identification, assessment and dry-weather sampling and testing of stormwater outfalls, as well as other aspects of stormwater management.

 

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Heidi Marshall, PE has been assisting industries and municipalities with NPDES compliance since the 1990s when EPA published the initial stormwater requirements and can assist you with preparation of the Notice of Intent, developing or updating the Stormwater Management Plan, and can provide assistance with the required follow-up actions.

 

Hoyle, Tanner is equipped to help communities that are affected by MS4 regulation changes. We are immediately available to help with pre-application funding, notice of intent preparation for October, and setting up action plans to comply with MS4 requirements.

Let Hoyle, Tanner guide your community into a future with cleaner water. Contact John Jackman, PE for asset management application assistance, or for MS4 assistance, contact Michael Trainque, PE or Heidi Marshall, PE.

Capturing Data in a New Era

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This season Hoyle, Tanner employees are finding all sorts of ways to get out into the field. An essential aid to us in our field work is a GPS data collector. Employees from all departments have been utilizing the GPS data collector to collect centimeter grade accuracy GPS data in multiple states across New England. The variety of jobs the GPS is being used for includes tasks such as collecting utility pole locations in Massachusetts, flagging wetlands in New Hampshire, performing quality assurance checks of bridge superstructure construction in Vermont, utility asset management for multiple municipalities across New Hampshire and much, much more.

The strength of the GPS data collector is not only in its ability to collect highly accurate, horizontal and vertical data, but also in its extreme ease of use. Horizontal data can be collected in the World Geodetic System 1984 (standard latitude and longitude) or any of the state plane coordinate systems, and the vertical data is collected in the North American Vertical Datum of 1988. The GPS is powered by an android operating system, and requires no GIS or survey experience to learn how to use. The device also streams real time kinematic (RTK) corrected global navigation satellite system (GNSS) positions.  These real time corrections allow the user to see coordinates of shots as they are taken which also eliminates the need for special software to post-process the data back in the office.  The GPS data collector is capable of outputting both GIS shapefiles and ASCII text files, and it is also capable of inputting GIS shapefiles that can be viewed as a layer while collecting data in the field.

The GPS data collector is a powerful tool that has greatly improved the quality of field visits for the Hoyle, Tanner staff.  The ability to obtain highly-accurate GPS data with the click of a button while on project sites is changing the way we accomplish tasks, and we’re doing it in a more efficient manner.

Asset Management – Optimization of O&M & CIP, & Funding Strategy

Recently, John Jackman, P.E. and Carl Quiram, P.E. finished our series discussion on Asset Management highlighting the Optimizing O&M and CIP, as well as Funding Strategy tasks. The concepts presented in this video reflect the utilization of collected data collected to more accurately develop a Capital Improvement Plan and the necessary steps to fund those projects. Presented are examples used by various municipalities as wells as the information necessary to capitalize on the Asset Management Program data.  – Click Here to review the other presentations given as part of the Asset Management Series.

Planning Your Assets – Part 2

Top view of a group of busy business people sitting at a desk in a meeting

As outlined in the ‘9 Steps in Starting Asset Management’ and ‘Planning Your Assets – Part 1’ we have shared the process of starting asset management as well as an in-depth look at the first four of those steps. This post will round out the original nine steps covering the last five:

Framework:
With the needs identified, goals agreed upon, team building complete, and inventory and assessment finished, the development of the asset priority can begin by analyzing ‘Risk’. Risk of an asset is calculated by multiplying consequence of failure by probability of failure (or condition). Some organizations use strictly age-based assessment which focuses on the service life of the infrastructure versus the current condition and risk associated with that asset. Instead, age of an asset should be merely a factor in the overall risk of the asset when incorporating it into the plan.

The Plan:
Organizations make decisions about asset management based to the requirements placed on them by governing agencies as well as their own stakeholders. By developing an Asset Management Plan that will be utilized by all staff, a systematic approach to the implementation and future use of the program can be outlined. The plan will include a listing of all assets that are managed including buildings, utilities, roadway infrastructure, vehicles, equipment, etc. This plan will clearly describe the assets, policies and procedures for maintaining the currents, and the procurement process of future assets.

Training:
The use of an asset management database will not only empower organizations with knowledge, but can optimize their maintenance and operations. In order for the database to be maintained training will need to happen to ensure comparison of assets are on a standard form of measure and not subject to individual opinions.

Presentation:
Developing and giving a presentation to management or a governing board in critical in the acceptance and understanding of the asset management program established by the organization. By presenting a high-level of understanding and functionality in the

Implementation:
Setting the implementation into progress with all program participants will allow for the plan utilization for repair efficiencies, project scheduling and budget planning will allow for a seamless process in assessing all assets to ensure adequate service as well as reduce the risk of failure.

Continue reading about our asset management capabilities and the services we provide on our blog.

Planning Your Assets – Part 1

StrategyMaze

As outlined in the ‘9 Steps in Starting Asset Management’ post we shared earlier, asset management is the methodical process of organizing, operating, maintaining, renewing, and disposing of tangible assets while tracking each asset’s useful life and risk of failure to ensure the greatest return on investment. That post outlined simplistically the process that is utilized when starting asset management and this post is to delve a bit deeper into the first four steps:

Needs:
The first step in creating an asset management program is to conduct a needs assessment to understand the requirements. Organizations utilize the practice of managing assets to achieve the greatest return on their infrastructure investment. By identifying the needs of the organization, the process of monitoring and maintaining facilities systems, with the objective of providing the best possible service to users, standardizes.

Goals:
Identifying the goals of the asset management program early in the development process allows the organization to reduce short-term reactive work and increase longer-term lifecycle asset management. Improving the asset utilization and extending its life and performance is completed while reducing additional asset-related capital and operating costs. By managing the infrastructure capital assets it minimizes the total cost of owning, operating, and maintaining assets at acceptable Levels of Service.

Team Building:
Asset management programs encompass whole organizations and rely on the recognition of the dependent relationship of maintenance, operation, performance, productivity, lifecycle cost, and capital planning. Workshops and internal seminars to gain buy-in from program users and find a champion to lead the efforts

Inventory & Assessment:
Once the first three steps are complete, an inventory and registry of the existing assets will need to be created to build the foundation for the program. Identifying and locating each asset throughout the organization’s infrastructure can be challenging, and in many cases location maps are used in the cataloging process. To analyze the infrastructure efficiently, a standard form of measure needs to be established, using an asset management software, which accounts for age, location, consequence of failure, and condition. The ability to build an asset catalog ensures all of an organization’s assets are maintained in one database that can be accessed and understood easily.

Coming up in Part 2 we will cover the additional five steps in this process.

9 Steps in Starting Asset Management

Step-By-Step-to-Asset-Management

Asset management refers to the methodical process of organizing, operating, maintaining, renewing, and disposing of tangible assets while tracking each asset’s useful life and risk of failure to ensure the greatest return on investment. By creating an Asset Management Plan, organizations are able to take a cost-effective approach to assist in balancing the risk with the cost.

  1. Needs:
    Assess current needs, infrastructure, management tools, etc.
  2. Goals:
    Identify your vision and goals for the Asset Management Plan
  3. Team Building:
    Hold Workshops to gain buy-in from program users and find a champion to lead the efforts
  4. Inventory & Assessment:
    Develop an inventory and condition of your assets
  5. Framework:
    Define the Level-of-Service, Consequence of Failure, Failure Modes, Likelihood of Failure, etc.
  6. The Plan:
    Develop the Asset Management Plan that will be utilized by all staff
  7. Training:
    Train employees on the framework and input procedures
  8. Presentation:
    Develop and give the presentation to the management or governing board
  9. Implementation:
    Work with all program participants to utilize the plan for repair efficiencies, project scheduling and budget planning

Each of these steps will be outlined in future posts in more detail. To find out more about the Asset Management services we provide to our clients please contact Carl Quiram.