7 Steps to Better Capital Planning: Prepare for the Future
By Lora Mays, Product Marketing Manager
This is the last blog post in our series that shares the seven steps to better facility capital planning. In case you missed it, check out our previous five blog posts:
- 7 Steps to Better Capital Planning
- 7 Steps to Better Capital Planning: Data Gathering
- 7 Steps to Better Capital Planning: Analyze Benchmarks
- 7 Steps to Better Capital Planning: Prioritize Capital Projects
- 7 Steps to Better Capital Planning: Funding and Defensible Budgets
Now that you have the basis of your facility capital plan in place – from gathering the right data, to analyzing key benchmarks, to understand how to prioritize and lastly, understanding how to create a budget you can defend – you need to think about how you will continue to keep this process in place for the years to come.
After all, as time goes on, team members will change and the priorities that you have in place will also change. This alone is enough to make a successful process falter, and serves as the reason why sustaining and maintaining a program is a critical final phase.
To ensure that you have a solid plan in place for your future capital planning needs, you need to do the following three things:
Address data maintenance
Keeping your data clean and maintaining the accuracy of data will be essential to ensuring that you have the right data feeding your facility capital plan. It’s important that you have processes in place where you can ensure that data is collected on a continual basis, as well as updated and centrally stores without excessive manual work.
If you are able to leverage an integration, such as what Accruent offers between its CMMS and capital planning solutions, you can simplify the data maintenance process and leverage the standardized operating procedures you already have in place for your CMMS. This ensures that you have the same type of data across systems.
In addition, your organization should consider leveraging assessment services to identify new needs and to monitor progress against your facility capital plan. Industry best practices state that organizations should gather data on approximately 25 percent of the facility portfolio each year, ensuring that the entire portfolio is assessed over a four-year timeframe.
Review prioritization strategies
As organizations grow and change, their priorities also shift. Because of this, your team should build in time to review how you are prioritizing projects over time. Whether it’s due to economic factors or a shift in your portfolio, a building that may have been a guaranteed component of your facility portfolio over time may no longer be needed. Instead of investing your funds within this facility, you may want to put them elsewhere.
Because of this, you must take time to review your strategies of how you prioritize your investments and your team’s time. It will help you save time and effort in the long run, which can save your organization substantial budget.
Offer visibility to key stakeholders
Providing insight into how you are spending the facility capital funding that you received and the return on this investment serves as an imperative step in the process. Ensure that stakeholders understand how funds have been used and what the results have been from doing so. As a result, you can further defend your budget and ensure that funding continues in the future.
Improving your facility capital planning process provides numerous benefits to your organization. For one, it helps you develop a long-term view with accurate multi-year forecasting, ensuring that you are making investment decisions based on objective, analytical and transparent information. As a result, you will reduce your financial, operational and legal risks while delivering substantial cost savings and efficiency gains.
Interested in learning more? Learn more about how VFA Facility serves as a comprehensive solution to help your organization reduce risk and improve the efficiency of your facility capital planning budget.