Learnings from our business breakfast

Business breakfast event

Business breakfast event

Last week we held our business breakfast event on data led strategic asset management. The event provided insightful presentations from Royal Mail Group, CDS and Faithful+Gould and we collected interesting observations via our interactive polls and discussions.

In this blog, we want to share key themes from the event and the results from our interactive polls which tested a number of assumptions.

Poll 1 – Use of data centric systems

In our first poll, we asked: “In your experience, how proficient is the property sector in strategic asset management involving data centric systems.” Only 10% of those polled considered the industry to be using a best practice, standards based approach which indicates that most organisations are still making decisions based on opinions rather than facts.

Using data to manage your supply chain

Asset Factory screen

Ronnie James from Royal Mail shared his experience of using data at a strategic level to manage their FM supply chain. By using Asset Factory, Royal Mail now have complete visibility of reactive and planned maintenance. This allows them to work collaboratively with their supplier to proactively drive service improvements, mitigate business risks, improve customer satisfaction and reduce costs.

‘In a tough economic environment, it is vital that we search for innovative ways of working through the use of technology, so that we are being as efficient and effective as possible and delivering shareholder value’. Director of Workplace (Royal Mail Group Property)

Poll 2 – How valued is your FM function

In our second poll, we asked: “how valued is your FM function as a strategic lever in your organisation.” Less than 15% of those polled considered that the FM function to be highly valued in their organisation. This reinforces the point that in many cases property and FM professions are not involved at a strategic level.

Asset Factory demonstration

Mike Stephens, Asset Factory Product Manager, provided a comprehensive live demonstration of Asset Factory – a reporting application that allows you to manage the cost, value, risk and performance of your property assets. Mike showed the power and flexibility of the application in allowing you to combine multiple property data including both quantitative and qualitative measures to help you make data led strategic decisions.

Mike also showed how the use of data and insight allows you to move from having purely a rear mirror view to moving towards a forward-looking view that allows you to have the ability to perform scenario planning – a key component of effective data led strategic asset management planning. For more information, please visit www.cds.co.uk/asset-factory

The importance of starting the journey

We recognise that most of you are likely to have varying levels of confidence in your data.

Mike presented our maturity model which has been developed by CDS to illustrate the different property decisions ranging from reactive on the far left to strategic on the far right. This provides a valuable tool to help organisations identify where they currently are in the data cycle and provides guidance on the steps required to utilise data more effectively at a strategic level.

We advocate starting the journey and shining a light on a specific area where you have most confidence and then expanding the use of asset factory to other data sets.

Improving the quality of data

Finally, Ian Sparkes from Faithful+Gould shared some tips for achieving and improving the quality of data. Ian talked about some of the techniques that can be used to categorise assets and manage in a structured and consistent way. Also important is having line of sight of your corporate objectives and having the processes in place that ensure the quality of data is maintained from start to finish.

Poll 3 – Line of sight

In our third poll we asked: “how clear is your organisation’s line of sight between corporate objectives and the data collected within the FM/Estates function.” Only 10% agreed that FM/Estates data was linked to corporate objectives with senior management sponsorship. This is concerning given that that property remains the most expensive cost to a business, second only to staffing costs.

Ian also discussed the importance of interrelationships between systems and whilst individual operational systems have reporting capability they, in most cases, cannot provide the ability to provide a holistic view to inform strategic asset management decision making. Having a tool such as Asset Factory that sits on top of your operational systems and allows you to combine and aggregate data is a key enabler to achieving informed strategic asset management decision making.

More analysis

To find out more about the implications to the industry from our interactive polls, please visit Mike Stephen’s blog.

To find out more about Asset Factory and how the applications can be used in your organisation, please contact Jonathan Astin.