Asset management planning

What is asset management?

Asset management is defined as the process of managing a municipality’s assets in a cost-effective manner, by analyzing the life cycle of all the assets in a community to develop information about future maintenance, new developments and capacity resource.

Asset management is critical to effectively planning, maintaining and operating municipal infrastructure, both on a short-term and long-term basis. It projects full life cycle costs, levels of service, risks and future demands, helping municipalities to make informed decisions and improve their data management and evaluation of return on investments.

An asset inventory, also known as an asset register, is a system for recording information about your municipal infrastructure assets. It is a record of the asset information, typically held in a spreadsheet, a database or a software system, and includes data such as quantity, type and construction costs.

What are the benefits?

An asset inventory is essential to municipal asset management planning. It coordinates and stores information, allowing municipal leaders to make informed decisions regarding their infrastructure assets. The asset inventory can also assist in developing long-term municipal economic, social and political plans. Having an inventory makes it easier to identify and respond to issues concerning the costs and risks associated with the maintenance, rehabilitation, replacement and removal of infrastructure assets. Benefits include:

  • prolonging asset life and aiding in making informed decisions regarding rehabilitation, repair and replacement concerns;
  • meeting consumer demands with a focus on system sustainability;
  • setting rate based on sound operational and financial planning;
  • budgeting focused on activities critical to sustained performance;
  • meeting service expectations and regulatory requirements;
  • improving response to emergencies; and
  • improving security and safety of assets.

How to get started:

Not sure of how to get started or how to improve your asset management practices? 

Alberta Municipalities is pleased to offer a series of free online workbooks that cover all aspects of asset management. In 2017/2018, Alberta Municipalities partnered with RMA and Infrastructure and Asset Management Alberta (IAMA) to develop and deliver asset management workshops for elected officials, senior administration, and municipal staff.

You can access the workshop workbooks, free of charge, from the Asset Management Courses section of this information hub.

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