Understanding Asset Management


Asset Types

An asset comprises any object that an agency owns or maintains, such as a car, truck, manhole, or section of sidewalk. Asset types determine the kind of record users create when they add assets into the agency inventory.

Civic Platform, when coupled with GIS, can synchronize asset types in Civic Platform with GIS. This feature enables a data representation and visual map representation of your asset records.

Asset types provide a common classification for similar objects, which includes asset type specific attributes. You can define multiple asset types, but an individual asset can only belong to one asset type. For example, you can categorize pickup trucks, sedans, and compact cars as the automobile asset type, and fire hydrants as the hydrant asset type.

Over time, many assets require visual inspections to effectively manage their life cycle. A popular city sidewalk is a valuable asset and it should have visual inspections to ensure its integrity for pedestrians, wheelchairs, and strollers. Civic Platform provides an asset condition assessment type to categorize assets that require similar types of ongoing maintenance.


Asset Type Functions

Civic Platform provides a basic set of asset types for your agency. To meet agency needs, you can add new asset types or modify existing asset types. Civic Platform provides the following functions to manage asset types:

  • Assign an ID mask

  • Synchronize with GIS

  • Associate with a work order type

  • Define the asset class types.

Working with Asset Class Types

Civic Platform provides five asset class types; component, linear, node-link linear, point, and polygon. Node type management provides the ability to specify which asset types you can use as nodes for the node-link linear asset type.

Synchronizing Asset Type Records with GIS

You can designate GIS as the master inventory for an asset type in which case Civic Platform reads the asset inventory from GIS and displays a spatial representation of the asset type on an GIS map. Civic Platform and GIS reflect the same information about asset records when you perform a synchronization. You can create an asset/GIS batch job to synchronize asset and GIS records at regular intervals.

Linked Assets

You can associate assets with other assets.

Example Use Case

You link fire hydrants link to the water lines that feed it. You link telephone poles to the telephone wires that run across them. You link manhole covers to the streets they lie in and the pipes beneath them. You link a building might to the furniture and equipment housed within. You link trucks and other heavy equipment to the shop or garage that stores them.

Agencies determine the rules for linking assets. Civic Platform links assets by establishing a parent/child relationship. A parent asset has dependent assets or child assets that do not exist without the parent. A parent asset can be a child to another asset.

Example Use Case

A building is a parent asset to an HVAC unit. A sewer pipe is a parent to a fire hydrant, but the pipe is a child to a sewer main.

After you link assets, you can view the relationship to better track and manage changes and more easily find assets that relate to a project.

Asset Group Update

You can update information associated with all assets in a group at the same time.

Example Use Case

You put several streetlights or a variety of assets in different parts of town, into service on the same day.

Asset Contacts

Agency users can review the individuals or contacts associated with an asset and add or remove asset-contact associations.

Asset Condition Assessments

Condition assessments apply to assets that change or deteriorate over time. These assets may require a visual condition assessment to effectively manage their life cycle.

You can group assets together that require the same condition assessment, enter the condition assessment findings, and create a history of assessments and performed maintenance.

Example Use Case

Once a year you inspect vehicles for safety and test for emissions. Once a year you inspect city sidewalks for cracks.


Working with Condition Assessment Attributes

Civic Platform provides for condition assessment types that define a set of attributes to assess an assets condition. The attribute values provide the assessment of an asset’s condition.

Example Use Case

A hydrant condition assessment type includes attributes for flow coefficient, flow hydrant, flow hydrant location, and test coefficient. In this case, each condition assessment attribute records one static value for hydrants that does not change.

You can use condition assessment observations for condition assessments that change. A condition assessment observation can have an unlimited number of observations on a single condition assessment.

Example Use Case

A vehicle condition assessment type includes attributes for tire tread depth, windshield condition, and mileage. Over time, the values for these attributes change.

Working with Asset Ratings

You can assign ratings to assets, asset groups, and asset types. You can manually enter a rating value or automatically calculate a rating value based on a formulaic combination of multiple criteria.

Civic Platform stores all manually entered or automatically generated ratings. You can use these historical ratings to graphically display the history of each asset’s condition or the average condition of a group of assets.

Inspectors can rate assets on criteria such as safety, risk, or overall condition. Administrators can create rating formulas that take into account factors like condition assessments, work orders, service requests, and direct updates. The rating formula can access asset details, asset attributes, condition assessment details, and condition assessment attributes.

You can use ratings to quantify the status of assets and observations of assets; show all pump stations that are of high risk and in poor condition, for example.

Work Orders

A work order is a record or a request to perform a job. Most work orders have several types of associated information that might include address information, costing information, related assets, associated documents or pictures, inspections, parts, and maps.

Example Use Case

You need to service several fire hydrants in a neighborhood this month. You create a work order for one of the fire hydrants. Because the fire hydrant is an asset, you search for the fire hydrant and Civic Platform copies the specific information about the fire hydrant, including the address, to your new work order. You identify the parts associated with the work order, the cost of the parts that are necessary for routine maintenance. You attach a PDF schematic of the fire hydrant. When the work order is complete, you copy it for each fire hydrant, and correct the asset and address information for each copy. At the conclusion of the maintenance, an inspector sees that the hydrants work according to their specifications.

You can create work order templates to pre-populate fields in a work order. Your agency can define one or more templates that specify required data and tasks for new work orders.


Managing Work Order Tasks

Civic Platform supports a lower level of detail on work orders, referred to as a work order task. A work order task is a step in completing a work order activity. These tasks provide a checklist or set of instructions for the individual or crew to perform the work, and are adjustable per work order.

Example Use Case

You need maintenance completed on a vehicle. The technician creates a single work order and adds multiple tasks to the work order, such as changing the oil and inspecting the brakes.

You can attach work order tasks to work order templates to specify standard tasks required to complete a work order. Civic Platform automatically applies these work order tasks to work orders when you create the work order.

Managing Work Order Types

Work order types provide categories of work orders.

Example Use Case

Your agency uses one work order type to classify maintenance work and repair work for street lamps, and another work order type to classify maintenance work and repair work for street segments.

You can associate a work order type with different work order tasks.

Example Use Case

An oil change work order task applies to several types of work orders, such repairing a fleet or tuning an engine.

When you associate a work order type with a work order task, you narrow the scope of available tasks, which helps supervisors identify relevant work order tasks when they modify a work order.

Example Use Case

A supervisor wants to add a task to a water pump maintenance work order. When the supervisor looks up tasks, none of the tasks associated with another work order type display.

Work Order Parts Inventory

The parts inventory allows an agency to track the usage and supply of consumable parts. The parts inventory defines each individual part, the location of the part, and the contact information about the vendor or manufacturer. You link these parts to work orders. When you use these parts while fulfilling a work order, Civic Platform updates the part supply and part location.

Example Use Case

You maintain a fleet of trucks and three of these trucks require an oil change. You create a work order for the oil change. You use the part inventory to find the oil filter needed for the trucks, the total number of oil filters in stock, and the filter location. If you need more oil filters, you can find an approved vendor to reorder more filters. When you assign the parts to the work order, Civic Platform subtracts the three oil filters from the total inventory at the location.

Asset Attributes and Templates

Civic Platform uses attributes and templates effectively manage and track agency assets, structures, and establishments.

Attributes define item characteristics, such as condition, length, color, life expectancy, and value. You can create custom attributes in addition to the attributes provided for standard asset, structure, or establishment records.

You can create a collection of attributes in an attribute table, associate one or more attribute tables with a template and associate the template with specific asset, structure, or establishment types so that all instances of the same type provide the same set of attributes. You can define as many attributes and attribute tables as required and use each one in several different templates. You can associate any template with multiple asset, structure, or establishment types.

Example Use Case

You define values for the following attributes; engine type, unit size, model number, manufacturer, serial number, condition, diameter, hydrant type, pipe size, and water pressure zone. You use some of these attributes in several different templates and you do not use the more specialized attributes in a template. For the vehicle template, you use model number with engine type, condition, manufacturer, and other attributes. For the fire hydrant template, you also use model number with diameter, hydrant type, pipe size, and water pressure zone. You use the condition attribute in templates for vehicles, hydrants, and residential/commercial structures. After you create the templates, you associate them with asset, structure, and establishment types. You associate the vehicle template to the truck, van, and plow vehicle types.

Example Use Case

You create one template for plumbing and sewage fittings, with attributes like diameter, length, and material, and attach this template to the drainage pipe asset type and sewage asset type. You create another template for shopping malls. You use the same material attribute that you used for plumbing and sewage fittings, in addition to the cuisine, capacity, and number of employees attributes. You associate this template to the restaurant establishment type and snack bar establishment type.