Asset Management Manual
A guide for practitioners!

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3.1.1 Introduction

An asset management plan (AMP) can be conceptualized as a “business plan” for an organization (PIARC 2008) that has stewardship responsibilities for an infrastructure network. When considering whether or not to develop an AMP, it may be useful to consider questions such as the following (PIARC 2014, PIARC 2016.1):

  • Are the levels of service or performance of the assets that the Road Organization is providing documented, and has the Road Organization researched what its customer’s value?
  • How does the Road Organization know, whether its mission is being accomplished with maximum effectiveness and efficiency? Does it have evidence to convince stakeholders of this?
  • Does the Road Organization have an accurate picture of the scope of all assets under its management, their financial value, their position within their lifecycle, and the risks associated with the assets?
  • Has the Road Organization considered all the options in developing upgrade and preservation programs? How has the Road Organization optimized its planned expenditure in asset preservation?
  • Does the Road Organization understand growth and the demand for the services provided through road infrastructure?

The AMP is a document that brings all of these concerns together into a single plan (perhaps with multiple references to supporting documents and plans) and that tells the story of the Road Organization in relation to its mission. There is no one “right” document structure for an AMP since the structure will depend on how the organization plans to utilize the document. However, there are real benefits to having a standard AMP structure, which enables a repeatable and standard document.

The audience for the AMP can be arranged into concentric rings of involvement. If an asset management leader and steering committee consisting of representatives from key sections within the organization are already in place, then many of those individuals will naturally serve on the core team that does most of the writing of the AMP. The remainder of the steering committee members would serve as reviewers. If the steering committee and leader are not yet appointed, then it will make sense to appoint AMP authors who can eventually serve in the implementation roles.

Practitioners describe the AMP as a “living” document. As the AM planning process is repeated on an agreed cycle, the output of that process (the AMP) will develop and change to accommodate the organization’s increased knowledge and understanding of service levels and performance measures and how the organization’s policies and programs affect them (PIARC 2014).

A best practice AMP should demonstrate the following:

  • Full support and commitment of the Road Organization to AM and seamless integration of AM principles into all levels of decision making;
  • Well-reasoned service levels that have been debated and agreed upon with taxpayers and service users;
  • Evidence that agreed levels of service and performance levels are being achieved consistently;
  • Demonstrated knowledge of growth and demand;
  • Integration of risk management at all levels of decision making and in all works and financial programs, including maintenance programs;
  • Integration of sustainability principles into all decision making processes and the inclusion of appropriate sustainability projects in the AMP’s program outputs;
  • An optimized resource allocation process;
  • Coordination of all work programs with those of other utility operators sharing the same corridor to ensure that waste and disruption to customers are both minimized;
  • AMP improvement programs that are appropriate, resourced, monitored, delivered, and reported on; and the results of which are used and incorporated into the AMP as appropriate.

The AMP plays a key role in connecting the organization’s corporate strategic direction with implementation tools, ensuring that the organization can achieve its mission in the most cost-effective manner while delivering the required levels of service.


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