Another year has gone by! As we say our goodbyes to 2016 and welcome the new year, we stop to investigate the latest trends of 2017 that we could all benefit from moving forward.
The start of a new year always opens us up to anxiety about the future. We’re all a little scared and excited by our year end performance reviews; will we get that raise and bonus we were waiting for or are we in some trouble? For businesses as a whole, the yearly review holds a whole different meaning; are we reaching our growth targets or is our business waning? In today’s competitive day and age it’s important for businesses to stay ahead of their industry trends.
If businesses only focus on running their day to day operations, they will miss the big picture and eventually falter. While many businesses are looking to evaluate their employee performance, let’s not forget the performance reviews of our office assets and equipment. Here, we have compiled some of the prominent trends in asset management and explored the growing importance of asset tracking software.
Taking asset management to the next level!
“Technology has enabled small companies to do amazing things,” says technology consultant Phil Simon. Nowadays, more and more businesses are looking to automate processes by adopting SaaS (Software as a Service) in order to increase efficiency and reduce costs; 17% and 31% of enterprises now have VMs in the public and private cloud respectively. Technology can smooth out office workflows, decrease the time spent on repetitive and redundant logistical processes and generally increase office productivity. When it comes to asset management, businesses are moving away from spreadsheets and even the more traditional on premise software to manage their assets. The double digit growth rate of SaaS companies has caused traditional software companies to offer SaaS; 82% of new commercial applications are built specifically for cloud delivery.
Automating processes for asset management is no longer a ‘good to have’ but has become a necessity for businesses that want to optimize their office workflows and increase productivity. Asset tracking software enables businesses to organize their assets, track them using barcodes/QR Codes, manage their usage across departments and employees and ensure that asset shortages and equipment downtimes do not hamper office productivity.
Data, data and more data!
In an age where data is becoming as valuable as oil, businesses are fighting to acquire more and more data. As Rod Collins explains in the Huffington post, “We now suddenly find ourselves in a new world with new rules—a highly hyper-connected world—where for the first time in human history, mass collaboration is not just possible, but highly practical and pervasive.” Asset and equipment managers across the globe are also realizing the importance of data when it comes to cost saving and procurement. Asset tracking software not only provides a way to store data but also an easy method of analyzing that data. The software has the ability to connect different departments within organizations and bridge the gap between front and back office operations. The software enables employees to leverage and analyze data from operations, maintenance and finance, and adopt collaborative strategies to minimize cost and optimize functionality of equipment and assets. For example, data on equipment usage, vendor history, maintenance costs and frequency can help businesses procure assets that are cost effective and deliver the most value. Additionally, the software can track warranties and maintenance schedules based on best practices and license information in order to maximize their equipment value and increase equipment uptime.
Focusing on equipment maintenance strategies!
For some years now organizations have been focusing on using preventive methods of maintenance. Such methods focus on using time or event-based triggers to predict equipment maintenance. Coupled with advances in technology and sensor-based equipment condition monitoring, proactive methods of equipment maintenance have become increasingly more important. Predictive and preventive maintenance ensures operational efficiency, increases equipment reliability, safety and reduces energy consumption and costs. According to the US department of energy fuel costs alone can be lowered by 12-18% through preventive maintenance. Systems that make room for smoother implementation of such proactive methods of maintenance such as CMMS are on the rise. CMMS (Computerized Maintenance Management Software) has taken the front row when it comes to championing an effective execution of such maintenance strategies. Asset tracking software and CMMS allow organizations to collate equipment performance, maintenance and support information for faster decision making, order generation, and maintenance scheduling. Such systems allow users to schedule routine maintenance based on manufacturer suggestions and equipment history.
Going mobile, an ambulance for equipment!
In a world where groceries are delivered to our doorstep, equipment maintenance too is becoming more flexible and convenient. Mobile field service technology has become popular among organizations; according to Gartner by 2016, 40% the workforce will be mobile of which two-thirds will own a smartphone. In addition, field service organizations will purchase 53 million tablets in 2016. What this essentially means is that you’re going to need a system that connects all these workers and manages your equipment maintenance across locations. Asset tracking software offers the perfect way to do this. It’s on-the-go app and cloud based nature enables employees to schedule equipment maintenance from different locations, maintenance personnel to follow up these maintenance requests and managers to track this entire process from the comfort of their own offices. According to Steven Fredette, president and co-founder of Toast, “adopting mobile and SaaS technologies will officially become a sink-or-swim necessity for businesses of all sizes in 2017, even for businesses that have yet to fully adopt modern technology.”
“Resistance to change is often just a lack of clarity. Ambiguity is the enemy of change,” Dan Heath, co-author of Switch: How to Change Things When Change is Hard. So take out the time to look around for technologies that will have the biggest positive impact on your business. Pay attention to every facet of your business, including your assets and equipment; asset tracking software may just be the solution to many of your asset woes and your key to staying ahead of the competition.
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