Asset management is a critical component to the short and long-term success of every water and wastewater utility regardless of size or system type. When a system understands the condition of its assets, in addition to present and future projected needs, the utility can make informed decisions about infrastructure operations, management, and investments. These decisions will minimize expenditures, equipment failures, and risk to public health while promoting reliability, resiliency, compliance, and customer satisfaction. Asset management moves utilities from reactive to proactive decision making and allows systems to get the most out of what they have. If your facility has never developed an asset management plan or it’s been quite some time since you’ve last revised your plan, we’ve highlighted our favorite resources to get you back on track. A well-developed plan includes asset inventories, operation and maintenance tasks, emergency response and contingency planning, comprehensive financial plans, succession planning, and an understanding of current and future service level goals. Without addressing the technical, managerial, and financial management of your system, your plan will be incomplete. So without further ado, here’s our favorite resources to help you improve your understanding of asset management and develop your own program. What is Asset Management? Successfully Protecting Your Investment in Drinking Water Infrastructure: Best Practices from Communities & Local Experts U.S. EPA and USDA This 12-page guide explains how asset management can improve system reliability, cost efficiency, and customer communication. Strategies for developing a plan and case studies that highlight solutions to asset management challenges are included in the document. Learn more: U.S. EPA Asset Management Resources for States and Small Drinking Water Systems AWWA Asset Management Definitions Guidebook American Water Works Association In this 33-page guidebook, systems can clarify common terminology used by asset management professionals and asset management program guides. Learn more: AWWA Asset Management A.M Kan Work! An Asset Management and Energy Efficiency Manual Southwest Environmental Finance Center A.M Kan Work Is a digital asset management manual that uses videos and texts to teach systems how to develop their own program based on their five core components of asset management. Learn more: SW EFC Asset Management Effective Utility Management: A Primer for Water and Wastewater Utilities Water Effective Utility Management (EUM) This 60-page guide identifies 10 key attributes of an effectively managed utility that should be considered in your asset management plan. The Primer teaches utilities to self-assess operations and make improvements. An interactive primer is available to assist in self-assessment. Learn more: Water EUM Resources Developing an Asset Management Plan Asset Management: A Handbook for Small Water Systems U.S. EPA This asset management STEP Guide Series will teach water systems how to inventory, prioritize assets, and develop long-term maintenance plans. Learn more: Asset Management Resources Check-Up Program for Small Systems (CUPSS) U.S. EPA CUPSS is a desktop application (Windows-only) based on the EPA’s STEP guide series that will help utilities record assets, schedule required tasks, assess their financial practices, and develop and asset management plan. Learn more: Building the Capacity of Drinking Water Systems Asset Management Guidance for Water Systems and Wastewater Utilities Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy This Excel workbook can be filled out as utilities acquire data for their asset management program. The pre-made tables make it easy to know what information to record during the planning process. Learn more: EGLE Forms and Guidance Writing Your Plan Asset Management Program – Small Community Guidance Ohio Environmental Protection Agency The state of Ohio requires all public water systems to maintain a written asset management program. This 22-page guide describes what should be included in a small community asset management plan to increase technical, managerial, and financial capacity. The link below includes Ohio template plans for non-community systems and small systems. Learn more: Public Water Systems (PWS) – Asset Management A Guide to Asset Management for Small Water Systems Georgia Association of water Professionals This 19-page guide describes what to include in a strategic asset management plan and how to implement a program. Learn more: Georgia Association of Water Professionals Technical Resources Additional Help: Asset Assessment, Financial Planning, and Program Review Taking Stock of Your Water System U.S. EPA Use this 38-page guide to understand the elements of an asset inventory and perform a simple inventory using the worksheets provided. The document includes how to prioritize assets and integrate the inventory results into a budget and asset management plan. Learn more: U.S. EPA Asset Management Resources for States and Small Drinking Water Systems The Basics of Financial Management for Small-Community Utilities Rural Community Assistance Partnership This 44-page guidebook describes how to manage utility finances through cost planning, budgeting, record keeping, and financial oversight. Learn more: RCAC Guidebooks Effective Utility Management Benchmarking Tool The Water Research Foundation This download is designed to help systems evaluate their current management program based on the 10 key utility management attributes that were identified in the EUM Primer report listed above. Learn more: Water Research Foundation Asset Management Resources Asset Management IQ Southwest Environmental Finance Center Use this online tool to establish a baseline for your system’s current asset management practices. Return to the test over time to monitor and measure system progress. Learn more: Asset Management Developing a new plan can seem like an intimidating project, however utilities will ultimately improve their services and decision making capacity while saving time, resources, and money. If your system needs help developing or assessing a program, check out the EPA’s list of technical and financial assistance providers or contact WaterOperator.org to have help finding a provider. The EPA maintains a list of capacity development contacts that can answer any questions about specific requirements of your primacy agency. To find additional information on asset management, visit our resource library . You can use the category filter to narrow down your search by topics in asset management, financial management, utility management, and more. Our library can also be filtered by resource type such as manuals, videos, or templates. The other filter options can refine your results to a specific host organization or state. Check out our tutorial to use the library to the best of its capabilities.