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Avoiding Key Mistakes in the Asset Lifecycle, with Al Hardy Part 3

Jackie Luo sat down with Al Hardy, author of “Covering Your Assets By Exposing The Butt-Ugly Truth,” to discuss how to avoid key mistakes made during the asset lifecycle. This is the third of a four-part interview with Al, an industry expert who believes fiscal and physical visibilities are the keys to comprehensive, cost-effective equipment management.

Jackie Luo: One of the common themes you have mentioned throughout our interviews is the idea of leveraging your EAM to avoid the common mistakes made in the asset lifecycle. How can companies make better use of their EAM

Al Hardy: I think some businesses neglect to gather all of the information they need from all of their stakeholders before turning to their EAM. Without determining needs and developing best practices with all stakeholders in mind, you cannot fully utilize an EAM. The needs of the entire company need to be explored before applying technology solutions.

What should a company do before meeting with vendors?

As I have mentioned in our previous conversations, companies need to plan the beginning with the end in mind. Before issuing RFPs or looking at financing options for different pieces of equipment, you need to ensure that your business processes have been identified and that the right people within your organization have been consulted. Companies often acquire technology that they may not know much about, but it is important to develop your own opinions about the needs of your company before inviting vendors to meet with you.

When developing the RFP, what is the first step?

When I am involved in an RFP, the first thing that I obtain – in writing – is the business case. I make sure that every stakeholder gives their input. You want a clear snapshot in that opening paragraph that will guide each element of the RFP. Some organizations that I have worked with have been resistant about hammering out the business case for the RFP, but in the end, they end up saving money on their acquisition.

What does a successful company look like?

About 20 percent of the organizations I deal with complete the process as I’ve suggested. These companies bring multi-disciplinary teams of people together on a recurring basis. These teams look at the entire asset lifecycle and the strategic goals of the organization. They ask questions such as: What are our core values? What are the things that we’re trying to do? They use these questions to guide their conversations about strategic objectives. These organizations that I’ve worked with, that encourage discussions and new ideas, tend to be better than the other 80 percent at increasing their profits and decreasing their expenses.

What happens when organizations fail to include all of their stakeholders?

The organizations that fail to gather their stakeholders together seem to struggle financially. Usually these are organizations with a top-down approach. As a consultant, I hear a lot of complaints from people about top-down organizations. The employees feel that they are working, working, working, but are not able to communicate their insights to management. Part of leadership responsibility includes getting people involved and bringing ideas to fruition for the benefit of everyone. If people within the organization are able to benefit from a great idea, and they know that idea came from their peers, it will result in a better outcome.

In our fourth and final interview with Al Hardy, we will discuss a business approach for implementing lifecycle management.

About Al Hardy:

Al Hardy is the author of Covering Your Asset By Exposing The Butt-Ugly Truth and a highly respected business consultant. His book testifies to real life and real time challenges, successes, and near calamities. Al has 22 years of experience in Asset Management and Maintenance for the healthcare industry. He is considered a thought leader because of his innovative technical and financial path from obscurity to industry recognition. He has been at the spearhead of managing acquisitions, developing business-cases, and leading implementation teams for cutting edge technologies using wireless and wired networks within dynamic environments. Connect with Al on LinkedIn and check out his blog.

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