Sunday, 1 February 2015

President Gas

If you do the Twitter thing, follow me at @hotpixUK
or LinkedIn here http://uk.linkedin.com/in/tonysmiththathousingitguy

If you are involved in UK social housing, you will have probably encountered 'Inside Housing' magazines Gas Access Campaign. An excellent idea and one that would certainly make the whole area of access, slightly easier. In my experience though, despite the stiff penalties for transgression, so many organisations still leave data records in the area wholly or partially in the realm of Excel.

"Providing they get the job done properly, what's wrong with that?", asks your asset manager. Well quite a lot my good (wo)man, I would reply.

Excel (and Access) breed little islands of data that notoriously are disconnected with your main HMS, ERP or third party asset module. I am sure when the spreadsheet was initially created it was drawn from the current asset list where gas was present. Tenant contacts were up to date as were mobile numbers and email addresses.

Just a few weeks on, voids are processed, new assets taken on, leaseholders buy stock or become 100% shared owners, gas comes to old E7 properties, some of the original contacts become deceased and new ground source pumps (or solar PV) replace gas.


Now how likely is your asset managers spreadsheet to keep pace with that lot?

If I were a betting man, I would give you good odds that they won't. Of course your peripheral systems are keeping pace, as they are recording the changes through repairs and changes in rent charging.  So would it not make sense to manage gas servicing and certification connected with your main system modules?

Each of the major housing management systems out there handle gas relatively well. Some need application of a few service days and once completed generally customer services and contractors can easily be made aware of gas issues too, providing prompts to catch risks before they become issues.

Reporting can be simplified too. Exception reports of (actual & approaching) overdues married up with a report of assets not flagged with any gas status, easily allows effort to be targeted at where issues need a spotlight shone. Indeed across many organisations where I have implemented full processes within existing HMS applications, for gas, 10 year and PAT electrical checks, have said afterwards, "How on earth did we cope before"?

Don't sit in the dark, turn up the heat on your gas servicing procedures, before a terrible accident turns it up on your chief exec. It's a hot potato, make sure you think outside the jacket!

Related Post: While thinking about assets, have you a single unified asbestos register?

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You can link with me on LinkedIn here - http://uk.linkedin.com/in/tonysmiththathousingitguy It would be great to connect !

The Psychedelic Furs - President GasThe Psychedelic Furs - President Gas.
(c) Tony Smith, Acutance Consulting www.acutanceconsulting.co.uk 07854-655009

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