Asset Management in care homes is a highly systematic process for procuring, operating, maintaining and disposing of care equipment. It is important to manage this process correctly, as it helps provide an attractive and safe care environment for your staff and service users.
Asset Management can also help save your care home money both in terms of capital and operational costs. Here’s how:
- Gain full visibility over your assets to reduce unnecessary spending on equipment.
An Asset Management programme should always start with a detailed equipment audit which is entered into a management system to establish a data-rich register of all your equipment. Many care homes are unsure of how many and what type of assets they have in their homes. This challenge is amplified with care home groups which have multiple sites and various staff members procuring equipment at different times.
Equipment Audits offer visibility over the type and amount of equipment at each site as well as where they are located on-site. By having visibility over these assets, organisations can ensure they have the correct manual handling equipment to care for the needs of their residents and staff. As well as helping to identify equipment gaps or surplus equipment.
By managing your assets in this way, you could reduce spending on unnecessary equipment if you can reuse equipment from other locations, this also helps care facilities work towards their sustainability goals.
- Reduce the risk of equipment failure and unexpected costs for replacing equipment.
A key part of an Asset Management programme is planned preventative maintenance (PPM). Proactive and regular service and maintenance of your equipment, not only keeps your care facility compliant with regulations but also reduces the likelihood of equipment failures through regularly scheduled work, whilst the asset is still functioning.
As well as keeping your assets in optimal working condition, regular service visits also take a snapshot of the equipment at that time. Keeping your asset register up to date with the age and condition of your equipment helps to identify when care equipment could be coming to its end of service lifespan. Additionally, if the condition is deteriorating so much that it could break down in between services and need replacement.
By having this information ahead of time, you can make decisions about replacement parts before equipment breaks down or needs replacing and avoid any unexpected costs.
- Reduce the cost of repairs and maintenance if uneconomically viable.
The nature of care equipment means that it can receive heavy use in busy care homes, especially as the equipment gets older. This will inevitably lead to the equipment breaking down and needing repairs. Whether it is something small like a replacement battery or handset, or a larger repair such as a new control box or actuator, repair costs can escalate and build up over time if you don’t monitor the spending or even have visibility over it.
In larger care homes and care home groups, the number of assets to manage can be astronomical and maintenance costs of assets will almost certainly increase with time. With Asset Management, you can forecast the increasing maintenance costs of an ageing asset and set criteria for when it becomes uneconomical to repair compared to the residual value of the asset.
You can gain actionable insights into the cost of each breakdown, the frequencies of call outs and the type of parts needed. With this information, you can make informed decisions about whether to keep repairing an asset or consider a replacement.
Staff productivity can also be improved – Imagine how much staff time is wasted with equipment downtime. Staff spend time looking for alternative equipment around the facility to help perform the task or contacting their maintenance teams to get the equipment repaired. If they don’t have spare equipment to use, they may need to perform a task manually, usually with the assistance of more staff, which increases operational costs and the risk of injury to staff.
- Plan and budget ahead of time and save costs with equipment procurement.
The data gathered within a thorough Asset Management programme can help you analyse and improve budgeting forecasts. Having information such as running/maintenance costs, expected life span, intensity of use, how many assets are in use and the frequency of need. This can help you decide whether to repair, replace, lease or dispose of the equipment.
You can save costs on equipment procurement by using economies of scale and bulk buying/supply agreement opportunities if you know you are going to be replacing lots of equipment over time.
As you can see, implementing an appropriate Asset Management programme into your care home, gives you the data to confidently make better and faster decisions to reduce equipment downtime, as well as reduce both short-term (repair) and long-term (replacement) costs and help you get the most out of your equipment budget.
Asset Management gives you the ability to analyse, monitor and report on your care equipment assets to help you make informed decisions on procurement, maintenance and lifecycle replacement. If they haven’t already, ask your service and maintenance provider what they can offer you in terms of an Asset Management programme.
AssetainTM – Giving Care Homes the Visibility They Need for Their Care Equipment.
Medaco has developed AssetainTM – A fully comprehensive programme that takes care of your whole asset register for care equipment, managing each item from initial supply, throughout its maintained lifecycle and up to planned obsolescence. It’s a whole new level of support for lifecycle management of your care equipment assets.
For more knowledge and articles on how to manage your assets visit https://medaco.co.uk/tag/asset-management/