Why you need an AM team
Experience around the world over nearly 30 years strongly suggests the need for a specific, dedicated AM team to be accountable for the implementation and improvement of asset decision, asset risk and long-term optimized asset planning processes.
You can’t just think things better. To improve, there must be action, and people with responsibility for those actions.
Specifically, ISO 55000 defines AM as the ‘coordinated’ activities of an organization to realize value from its assets. Co-ordination takes real effort, not just a general wish to co-ordinate.
This is no different than other functional teams within your organization where expertise and specialization deliver value. If it is your plan to deliver the AM capabilities, you need to be intentional in adding this competency to your organization.
However, this will be a decision that needs to be compared to other functions of your organization. Do all organizations need dedicated engineering, legal, marketing, safety, security, planning or marketing staff? The demand and value placed on each of these will dictate if these are specific positions, individuals or complete teams.
We were lucky at RTD that we got support from the General Manager to establish a team, and it is a real credit to our leadership. It was a message to our regulators, to FTA in particular, that we really meant it. But we could not have done what we did to clean up our data and investigate condition properly without significant labor – and asset strategies are even more work. For other actions perhaps we could have done something without a dedicated team; but without co-ordination you can do some smart things and not get the real benefits.
The likelihood of hitting a target you haven’t specified or aren’t aiming at is low.