A Complete Guide to Property Asset Management

Asset Management / December 2019

Updated: May 2021, August 2021, January 2022

In its purest form, property asset management is the maintenance and upkeep of business buildings and facilities. Effective property management can help streamline operating costs and even increase efficiencies. But how does it differ from regular asset management, and what role does a property asset manager play?

In this guide:

What Is Property Asset Management?

The Role of a Property Manager in Property Asset Management

The process of property asset management relates to the physical assets that support day-to-day business operations.

Those assets can be split into two categories; immovable and movable assets:

  • Immovable assets can include industrial, retail and office units and outside space.  As well as utilities (such as power, water and sewerage), lighting, elevators, and fire alarms.
  • Movable assets refer to any asset that isn’t attached to an immovable asset. This could include machinery and equipment, vehicles, printers, photocopiers, IT equipment, employee uniforms, and signage.

Property asset management mainly involves tracking and monitoring the financial value of assets to record their appreciation or depreciation over time.

It covers utility management, lease management, preventative and reactive maintenance activities, workspace management, security management, and cleaning.

Visitor tracking and management is also a vital part of the process, which is crucial for keeping business premises and facilities safe and secure.

How Does Property Asset Management Differ From Regular Management?

Asset management generally refers to the tracking and monitoring of company assets to realise their value. Including those that are both tangible and intangible.

For example, machinery and equipment, IT hardware and infrastructure, fleet assets, or digital assets.

The purpose of asset management software is to maximise return and get the most value out of a business’s assets.

Whereas, Property asset management is more fixed on optimizing operating costs while meeting the needs of employees and their workspaces.

What Is the Role of a Property Manager?

A property asset manager is responsible for all the assets relating to a building and its facilities. They aim to make those assets deliver value in line with a company’s core business goals while helping to provide suitable working environments for employees.

This role can also be referred to as facilities manager, property manager, asset manager, estates manager, or buildings manager. The different titles reflect how the scope of the job role can vary from business to business.

Typically, a property asset manager will keep an accurate register of all property-related assets that need to be maintained or replaced. That means collecting essential data (asset name, type, financials) and monitoring the performance of those assets throughout their asset life cycle.

A property asset manager also needs to plan asset maintenance works and may be accountable for building services such as security, parking, and cleaning.

The job role may also include carrying out asset risk assessments, analysis, and reporting.

What Are the Benefits of Property Asset Management?

In business, properties can make up between 5 to 20% of overall fixed asset costs. Effective property asset management can help a business to pinpoint inefficiencies.

It can also identify opportunities that will positively affect finances and lead to a well-run, efficient workplace.

Specifically, the benefits of property asset management can include:

  • Accurate asset tracking and record-keeping
  • Detailed asset performance monitoring
  • Work and servicing history
  • Workspace optimisation
  • A better understanding of operating costs

How Can Property Asset Management Enhance Business?

Asset management software can help make the process of property asset management more manageable and less time-consuming by automating and simplifying a number of processes.

It can also be cost-effective in the long run and cheaper than hiring a team of people to manage facilities.

An effective asset management solution can give a holistic view of all facilities and assets. This is especially useful for property asset managers who are responsible for multiple sites across the country or globally. Or for businesses with hundreds (or thousands) of assets to keep track of.

Such software may incorporate modules for scheduling preventative and reactive maintenance, managing work order requests, self-service requests, and reporting.

Some solutions may also cover space management, move management, and occupancy management for different work areas and floor plans.

Modern solutions are also web-based and mobile-friendly, which allow property asset managers to be more responsive and able to work unrestricted anywhere on or off-site.

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