From equipment and machinery to tools and vehicles, Australian trades businesses have many assets to keep track of. As such, you need to dial in your asset management processes to make sure your business is running smoothly. Implementing the following asset management best practices will help you better organise your asset purchases and maintain these in the long run.
Appoint a dedicated asset manager
There are many aspects to running a trades business, such as accounting, job scheduling, and asset management. No matter how organised you are, it’s difficult to oversee every aspect of your business without making mistakes. By delegating tasks like asset management, you will have more time to make critical business decisions.
The core responsibility of a dedicated asset manager is to ensure that company equipment and assets are always operational. They accomplish this by monitoring asset conditions and scheduling maintenance work when appropriate. Asset managers also maintain close relationships with vendors so the company can benefit from potential discounts and prioritised ordering.
Create a detailed asset inventory
An asset inventory provides comprehensive information on the assets the company owns. It contains asset names, types, serial numbers, locations, vendor details, units available, purchase dates, warranty information, and last maintenance dates. This data allows asset managers to better track the company’s assets and conduct more thorough audits. Asset inventories also inform you how many assets you currently have, so you can avoid unnecessary purchases.
Estimate life cycles
When you purchase new assets, you should make a habit of forecasting their life cycles. This will not only help you determine the best time to conduct maintenance but also when to renew and dispose of ageing assets. Plus, knowing an asset’s end of life helps you avoid premature spending on replacements.
To estimate asset life cycles, you can gather warranty information and recommended maintenance schedules from your vendors. Another method is to track previous expenditures on similar assets, and identify the period when maintenance costs overtake renewal costs.
Regularly monitor your assets
Monitoring asset conditions and locations is an integral part of effective asset management. You need to closely monitor your asset’s service histories and health so you know when to schedule maintenance work. If vehicles have not had a tune-up for a year, for instance, send them for servicing immediately to prevent breakdowns and roadside accidents.
Additionally, tracking asset locations makes it easier to plan jobs. Geolocation tracking and up-to-date asset registries let you know whether certain equipment is in use. This lets you know when equipment is unavailable and adjust schedules so that technicians have access to the right equipment at the right time.
Evaluate asset depreciation
Asset depreciation refers to the decrease in value of your assets as they’re used or stored over time. Evaluating the depreciation of your company’s assets is crucial in knowing whether you should replace or continue using them. If depreciation assessments of assets show that they will break down before the end of their useful life, then you’ll need to buy replacements. You may even be able to identify the causes of depreciation and find ways to mitigate them. For example, prolonged or incorrect use of equipment may be causing faster depreciation rates, which could be prevented with updated training and usage policies.
Tracking asset depreciation is also useful for calculating how much you can write off on your taxes. Thanks to government incentives like the instant asset write-off and temporary full expensing, you can claim deductions for the business cost of assets. Filing these claims ensures you’re not paying a fortune in taxes every year.
Leverage asset management software
Asset management software provides several capabilities that can streamline how you track and maintain assets. For starters, it features a centralised database that stores comprehensive records of your assets. The software can then be programmed to remind managers when certain assets or equipment are due for maintenance or replacements. Asset managers can then schedule preventive maintenance work orders and new purchase requests with a click of a button.
What’s more, asset management software eliminates manual processes. You can tag assets with barcodes so technicians can easily check these in and out of the warehouse without tedious data entry. When assets are currently in use, geolocation technologies show asset managers where the assets are and who is using these. These insights enable asset managers to streamline asset allocation and auditing.
The benefits of asset management software can’t be overstated, and if you want the best for your company, WorkBuddy is the solution. Our field service management software provides a full set of asset management features that dramatically increase operational efficiency. Book a free demo now to see how our asset management solutions benefit your trades business.