cloud-based CMMS for asset lifecycle management

Proper asset lifecycle management is vital to ensuring your organization is running at peak efficiency. Asset lifecycle management is typically broken down into five stages: planning, acquisition, utilization, maintenance, and disposal.

By thoughtfully considering every stage of asset lifecycle management, you not only make sure that you have the assets you need for your business to thrive, but also that those assets are kept in the best possible condition, extending their lifespans and reducing associated maintenance costs.

This article covers the basics of asset lifecycle management, including the stages, benefits, and best practices to follow when managing your assets.

What is an Asset Lifecycle?

An asset usually refers to any piece of equipment, spare part, tool, vehicle, or building that your company relies on to achieve its goals. An asset lifecycle spans from before you purchase your asset to the time of its disposal.

The assets most critical to your organization will depend on your industry and individual facility. A good place to start is by identifying your most critical assets using an asset criticality analysis. For example, the most critical assets are often pieces of machinery that your organization uses to produce products or perform services. These machines may be costly to purchase and maintain. But a critical asset could also simply be one that your facility depends on — even if it’s not expensive to replace. In either case, extending equipment lifespan should be a top priority.

If you need help getting started, eMaint offers an asset criticality analysis workshop designed to remove assumptions, emotions, and guesswork to determine an asset’s real impact from a risk, value, and safety perspective.

You can successfully maximize an asset’s lifespan and productivity by carefully considering every stage of the asset’s lifecycle.

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The 5 Stages of Asset Lifecycle Management

When managing any asset, it is useful to think of the asset’s lifecycle in five different stages. Each stage comes with a unique set of challenges. But by dedicating both time and funding into every stage, you can ensure your investment into a new asset returns high dividends over the course of its life.

Asset Planning

When your facility needs a new asset, begin by researching possible solutions to find the best fit for your needs. Take your time exploring your options, as critical assets typically require both significant upfront investment and continued investment over the course of the life of the asset.

Asset Acquisition

After determining what asset best suits your facility’s needs, the next step is to acquire it. This is when you must consider your company’s budget and long-term financial outlook. When possible, speak to multiple vendors to ensure you are paying the lowest possible price for your new asset. Also don’t forget to include the costs of delivery, installation, maintenance, and disposal in your total budget.

Asset Utilization

Once your asset is delivered, installed, and ready for operation, it’s time for it to enter what will be the primary stage of the asset’s lifecycle – utilization. During this time, you need to ensure your floor workers and maintenance teams have all the information they need to safely and efficiently operate the asset. This can be made much easier by deploying a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) such as eMaint, which helps your team effortlessly track work orders or access user manuals from anywhere, at any time, using any mobile device.

Asset Maintenance

An asset will undergo maintenance from the beginning to the end of its life, which means the maintenance stage of the asset lifecycle significantly overlaps with the utilization stage. When an asset is first being deployed, it’s important to take the time to test that everything is precisely aligned and lubricated. This ensures the asset runs as efficiently as possible for as long as possible.

Over the course of the asset’s life, you should generally focus on preventive maintenance and predictive maintenance rather than corrective or emergency maintenance. To learn more, see the 4 main maintenance strategies. It’s easier, less expensive, and less time-consuming to diagnose and address potential issues before they lead to breakdowns or other unplanned downtime.

Yet again, a robust CMMS software can give you real-time access to the performance and maintenance data you need to ensure your equipment remains in the best possible condition throughout the entire asset lifecycle.

Asset Disposal

The final stage of an asset’s lifecycle is disposal. Your organization will reach this point when it determines the long-term value of the asset no longer justifies the cost of maintaining it. You can use a CMMS to manage obsolescence and supply the data-driven records you need to determine exactly when it makes financial sense to dispose of an asset.

If your asset is still capable of performing the job it was purchased for, but your organization has decided that upgrading to a new asset is the most prudent choice, explore whether other companies may be interested in purchasing your used asset. If resale is not possible, then during the planning stage, you should have already earmarked part of the asset’s budget to cover any costs related to recycling or otherwise disposing of the asset.

What Are the Benefits of Asset Lifecycle Management?

By focusing on the five stages of an asset’s lifecycle, you can help ensure your company’s assets are as productive and reliable as possible – and that you’re getting the most out of your investment.

That’s why most modern organizations today depend on asset management software like eMaint. Condition monitoring with wireless vibration sensors and asset health software can help monitor the vital signs of their assets and proactively address maintenance concerns before they cause unnecessary wear on the machine.

Taking a proactive approach to asset lifecycle management allows your maintenance team to address potential problems before they lead to failures that can cause major damage or significant unplanned downtime.