Managing safety critical assets in the field poses significant challenges for asset owners, site managers, and service engineers. These assets are constantly on the move, making it difficult to track their location and ensure compliance with legal and regulatory requirements. In this article, we will explore various strategies and technologies that can help organizations effectively manage safety critical assets in the field.
The Challenge of Tracking Moving Assets
In industries like construction, heavy plant and equipment are frequently moved from one project to another. This constant movement makes it incredibly difficult to track these assets and ensure their maintenance and compliance with health and safety regulations. Many organizations still rely on paper-based equipment checks, which are prone to getting lost, difficult to complete in challenging environments, and require manual data transfer to digital systems for compliance purposes.
The Role of Asset Management Software
To overcome the challenges associated with managing safety critical assets, organisations can leverage asset management software. While some new plant equipment comes with diagnostic tools for capturing performance and status, there is a lack of integration between various software tools. This fragmentation increases costs and makes asset management more complicated. It is essential to find a comprehensive asset management software solution that can handle all types of assets, including less expensive items like compressors and trailers.
Leveraging QR Codes and RFID Chips
To improve asset tracking, many organizations are turning to QR codes and RFID chips. These technologies enable real-time tracking of assets’ location, status, and condition. However, it is crucial to ensure that the tagging solutions are robust enough to withstand harsh environmental and industrial conditions. The failure of asset tags can lead to a loss of visibility and hinder effective asset management.
Choosing the Right Asset Tag Solutions
Before investing in asset tags and printers, organizations should consider several factors to determine the most suitable tag solutions. Some key questions to ask include:
- What is the environmental exposure? Will QR codes be exposed to extreme heat, cold, or chemical substances?
- How durable do the tags need to be?
- Printing considerations, will the tags be printed internally, or will external suppliers be needed?
- QR code generation, does the software automatically generate QR codes that can be printed for new assets?
- Lifecycle and value of assets
- Is the asset leased, owned or belong to a sub contractor?
To ensure reliable and practical tag solutions, organizations can consider working with reputable suppliers like Scafftag and Brady, who specialize in industrial print and tag solutions. These suppliers provide materials, SDS sheets, expert advice, and practical solutions for asset management needs.
Streamlining Daily Operator Checks with QR Codes
Under regulatory requirements like PUWER and LOLER, organizations are responsible for ensuring that work equipment is fit for use. Operators are required to visually inspect and report any defects or damage before using the equipment. However, many operators find traditional paper-based checklists and reporting cumbersome. By using QR codes or RFID chips, operators can easily access asset history and complete visual checks using their mobile devices. Simplifying the reporting process improves operator engagement and facilitates efficient data sharing.
Meeting Conformity to ISO Standards
Many organizations adhere to internationally recognized standards such as ISO45001 and ISO9001. OHAS MS ISO45001 requires organisations to demonstrate compliance by maintaining service, inspection, and maintenance records, as well as safe systems of work and risk assessment documentation. ISO9001 focuses on quality management systems and emphasises the tracking, monitoring, and calibration of work equipment. When selecting an asset management platform, it is crucial to consider systems integration with ISO, GRC, and other risk management tools to avoid data sprawl and spreadsheet chaos.
Effectively managing safety critical assets in the field requires a comprehensive approach that utilises asset management software, QR codes, and RFID chips. By implementing robust asset tagging solutions and streamlining daily operator checks through mobile devices, organisations can improve compliance, data sharing, and overall asset management efficiency.
Integration with ISO standards and risk management tools further enhances the effectiveness of asset management systems.
For a system that offers seamless integration, auto-generation of QR codes, and easy deployment in the field, consider exploring AssetTagged.com. Contact us for a demo or to discuss your specific asset management needs.