Let’s make sure we’re all on the same page, here.
What is asset management?
The answer to that question is surprisingly fluid, I’m sorry to say. Broadly speaking, it’s “the ongoing management of financial, commercial, and administrative tasks necessary to ensure optimal financial performance of a solar PV plant or a portfolio of plants”. But, like almost all buzzwords, it’s been used so often that it’s started to lose its meaning.
Really, we’re overcomplicating what should be a very simple thing. An asset manager is in charge of tracking and managing wind, solar, hydro, or biomass power plants and portfolios, and asset management is the body of tasks, information, and actions taken to do so. When you’re working with a small portfolio centrally located, and subject to simple regulations, it’s easy.
As an asset manager, you’re a working across three separate specialties. We can confidently split it all up into: 1) Technical asset management, 2) Financial asset management, and 3) Compliance management. So let’s start there, shall we?
WHAT IS TECHNICAL ASSET MANAGEMENT?
In technical asset management, you’re focused on the details of performance and PV plant or wind farm output. There’s no “view from 10,000 feet up” approach, here. Technical asset management is all about understanding the what, where, why, and how’s of a given project. It means monitoring production data in real-time or near-real-time, and interpreting it correctly. You need to understand what’s expected from that PV plant or wind farm, under those weather conditions, and at that point in its operation, so that you know when something’s wrong and can react.
Technical asset managers operate as a go-between for the operations and maintenance team, and renewable energy owners and managers. They’re typically in charge of monitoring plant performance, and making the call to send the operations and maintenance, team out to the site for repairs and spare part replacement, as well as technical and performance-based reporting.
FINANCIAL ASSET MANAGEMENT 101
This is where the money comes in. Or goes out. Get it? You’re managing your portfolio’s invoicing and power purchase agreements, tax preparation, and reporting. If you’ve executed a successful technical asset management strategy, you’re reaping the benefits of steady and predictable energy production. With larger portfolios run on Excel, this is pretty tedious stuff. Some asset owners and managers spend days manually invoicing their offtakers every month. We’re bored just thinking about it. Using the right asset management software can fix this, and free up entire working days spent on the repetitive and predictable tasks that fall under financial asset management.
COMMERCIAL ASSET MANAGEMENT
It’s a commonly-told joke here at PowerHub that 80% of renewable energy companies are in technical default, and don’t’ even know it. Compliance is important, and costly when it fails. Good compliance management practices are your first line of defense against risk. If you’re focused on compliance, you’ll likely find yourself managing contracts, insurance, warranties, and reporting.
With PowerHub, tracking and managing compliance is easy.
SO WHAT IS POWERHUB?
Good asset management isn’t going to be good enough. Sorry. You should be working towards asset intelligence instead. This is where PowerHub comes in. Think of asset intelligence as a pyramid built on the foundation you laid by adopting asset management software.
IT BEGINS WITH ASSET MANAGEMENT
It begins with simply centralizing your data. With PowerHub, there’s no jumping from your monitoring software, to your invoicing platform, to wherever you store your contracts and PPAs, and cross referencing it all with weather and production predictions that live somewhere else. It’s all there, in PowerHub.
Then comes transparent and smooth collaboration. Your team has access to the information it needs, when and where needed, and there’s always one version of the truth. Project planning and task management in PowerHub keep everyone working together in lock step. With PowerHub, nothing needs to be duplicated. There is only ever one version of the truth.
AND BECOMES ASSET INTELLIGENCE
Here it is, your reward for all the heavy lifting you’ve already done. This is asset management 2.0. Now, you’re ready to introduce automation. Say goodbye to days spent issuing invoices every month, or manually tracking deadlines, billing schedules, etc. PowerHub can automate that for you. Our users leverage workflows to take care of that tedious-yet-important busywork, freeing up time and bandwidth for more nuanced work.
And, at the pinnacle of all of this – true efficiency, and measured insights. You’ll use forecasting to understand where your business is at, and where it will be in the future, and you’ll be empowered to make the right decisions at the right time.
There you have it. Your asset intelligence. Your PowerHub.
Want to learn more? Download The Real Value of Asset Intelligence.