Asset Management

The US federal government defines asset management as “the practice of managing infrastructure capital assets to minimize the total cost of owning and operating these assets while delivering the desired service levels.”

For most organizations asset management is simply driven by a cost-benefit analysis. But for gas and electric utilities, the service levels we strive for are 100% reliability and zero tolerance for safety incidents involving employees, contractors, or members of the public. These constraints have led to an entire new profession of Utility Asset Manager – they understand utility operations, the people who do the work, codes and standards, and a commitment to customers.

The WEI Operations Conference Asset Management Track has led this new profession for nearly a decade, bringing together key influencers and employees who do the work for yearlong conversations leading up to the annual WEI Operations Conference. Join this track in 2021 to learn about Asset Management strategies, decision making and new definitions of risk, as we will discussions of world class best practices through presentations and roundtable discussions.

This track is sponsored by:

Meet the Asset Management Program Development Team. Learn more about the Operations Conference.

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

10:45 AM – 12:00 PM
Building Blocks to AM Strategies
Speakers: Mahelet Dejene, San Diego Gas & Electric Company
Edmond Binuya, San Diego Gas & Electric Company
Rob Weik, Supervisor, Strategic Asset Management, Portland General Electric
Jacob Gates, New York Power Authority
This presentation will cover several building blocks for successful creation and implementation of Asset Management Strategies. A deliberate plan must be created, accepted within the organization, and implemented through purposeful financial investments. ISO 55000 certification follows closely with these building blocks and is increasingly more in demand as organizations search for a comprehensive asset management plan. Hear from companies with different perspectives of ISO-certification and their approach to creating an asset-centric mindset within their organizations.

2:45 PM – 4:00 PM
AM Data – The Good, The Bad and the Ugly!
Speakers: Jonathan Beaty, Field Inspection Services Manager, Kiewit Corporation
Travis Squires, Senior Associate – Data Science, METSCO Energy Solutions Inc.
Tessa Ryan, Distribution Asset Engineer, EPCOR Distribution and Transmission Inc.
Daniel Honeyfield, Manager, T&D Maintenance Planning, Sacramento Municipal Utility District
Shane Fay, VP Sales and Marketing, eSmart Systems
This presentation will cover the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly as it relates to utilities ongoing efforts to collect, centralize, harmonize and utilize their data to support asset management decision-making and production of justified outputs. This includes:

• The Good: Organizational alignment to focus activities, leveraging institutional knowledge for context of the data, evaluating real-time data, and adopting advanced technologies to augment AM data.
• The Bad: Loss of knowledge due to aging workforce/retirements. Slowing down decision making due to unreliable/incomplete data or even too much data. Not all data has value, and there is cost of maintaining the data.
• The Ugly: Lack of technology proficiency of staff and harmonization across systems. Inconsistent treatment of real-time data, identifying unreliable data, and selection of correct software/solutions to generate results.

Ultimately, from this session, utilities will get a better, more informed understanding of how to leverage data in their AM applications in a cost-effective manner, and how this data can be continuously improved as part of a broader asset management data life-cycle in order to mitigate data gaps in a cost effective manner and continue to produce prudent and justified data-driven decisions.

Thursday, April 22, 2021

10:45 AM – 12:00 PM
Building the AM-Centric Culture
Is your organization ready for an Asset Management Culture? Utilities who have started their journey toward implementing sound asset management practices will tell you one of, if not the most important keys to a successful implementation is the vital role culture plays in that transition. It is also many times the most challenging aspect, and one that utilities have in common.

So what is an asset management culture and why should it matter to you?

Join us and hear three utilities share their stories of change, how those changes are impacting their culture, and how their culture impacts their change journey.   After you learn about each speaker’s experiences, you will have an opportunity to ask questions and apply their feedback to your own change journey.

2:15 PM – 3:30 PM
Asset Management is Easy – When You Know Your Risks
Speakers: Lauren Booth, FortisAlberta Inc.
Scott Williams, Manager Asset Management, FortisAlberta Inc.
Peter Nearing, Consultant, METSCO Energy Solutions Inc.
Yusup Hojanepesov, Manager, PMO, EPCOR Distribution and Transmission Inc.
Greg Davis, Pacific Gas and Electric Company
Michelle Sakamoto, Pacific Gas and Electric Company
Morgan Griffith, Senior Managing Engineer, Exponent
The challenge to deliver safe, affordable, and reliable power while updating aging infrastructure, reacting to extreme weather events and public policy and regulatory directives, meeting evolving customer expectations, and embracing disruptive technologies requires navigating a complex, multi-faceted web of uncertainty. Prioritizing asset management investments, both capital and operating, by identifying, defining, and quantifying the risks and justifying investment decisions is becoming more and more complex. Subjective expertise of managers, engineers and field staff that formed the basis for prioritization of asset management investments is no longer sufficient. But is there a better way? Come hear from utilities that are using data and new definitions of risk to inform their decisions and completely shuffle the prioritization list with confidence and with the support of engineers and field staff. Learn how utilities are moving away from time-based OPEX and CAPEX replacements and toward targeted expenditures that produce quantifiable risk reductions and budget efficiencies.