South Craven - A large secondary school in North Yorkshire
The Asset Trac system was introduced into South Craven School just over 12 months ago. The purpose initially was for basic asset management with the plan to then link it with portable appliance testing. However, we have begun to utilise the system in a more sophisticated, but simple way, using the databases to manage a number of different processes. Quantifying its benefits only in terms of money would not do it justice. It has enabled us to provide assurance to the Head and Governing Body that we are maintaining school assets effectively and that we are meeting our obligations in terms of health & safety responsibilities. It has provided support in dealing with performance management issues and allows the Premises Manager to effectively and efficiently oversee day to day operational management of the premises. It has saved us time in lots of different ways, for example moving from an unreliable handwritten asset ledger system which was updated by numerous people in numerous faculties each year to one simple web based system with ownership and reliability. Whilst we realised the financial benefits this system could bring, we hadn’t perhaps realised the potential for managing school maintenance processes in such a simple but effective would have so many positive benefits above and beyond the fiscal.
Fire & Emergency Lighting SystemsThe servicing of the emergency lighting cost us £3600 per annum. We now have all emergency lights asset tagged and they are maintained throughout the year by the in-house team and also an external contractor. The cost is now £1650, saving the school £1950 per annum. We also now have a full inventory of the emergency lights and their condition as well as identifying if they are still run through a battery back-up system or the mains. Being able to quantify this enables the Premises Manager to plan for the removal of the batteries in an effective way
Furniture/StockHaving the ability to effectively stock take can reduce occurrences of double purchasing. Also multiple scanners can enable several members of staff to participate in stock taking without repeating the same work tasks. An accurate record can be kept of where items are which can be accessed from any computer point, which is advantageous over the traditional ledger system which was updated by each Faculty administrator on an annual basis. This is likely to have taken a number of days – so again a huge saving in personnel time which can be allocated to other tasks. We are able to move furniture around and know immediately what is in stock before ordering. In the past, furniture was hidden away in various stores for years on end, but now it is all tagged we know what we have and where it is. This has saved unnecessary purchasing of furniture.
Portable Appliance TestingWe have incorporated our PAT with the Asset Trac system. This summer we will be ensuring our PAT tests are up to date, but can also check that assets are where they should be by using the scanners as we work our way around the school. This will be a regular annual audit and will provide assurance that the system is maintained effectively.
Water Checks/LegionellaWeekly checks are made of sentinels and temperatures are recorded at each of them. This process is on an Asset Trac database. We currently pay for the monthly checks to be done, but these will be brought in house on the Asset Trac system as per weekly checks. We are looking to add to this with more checks on the water system being done by the school premises team. We estimate this will save us a £1000 per annum once we have set everything up.
Line Management & Management of MaintenanceThe ability to set up health & safety checks on the system has provided the Premises Manager with a useful management tool. Instant access to the databases allows her to check whether tasks have been completed and challenge individuals when they have not. It has assisted in dealing with performance management issues by providing hard evidence of achievement/non achievement of tasks and objectives. Having easy up to date access of progress on multiple tasks enables managers to keep up to date with staff without the need for constant checking freeing up time for other tasks. We are currently setting up our routine maintenance on the system which again will allow the Premises Manager to ensure work is completed to time, provide assurance that school equipment is being maintained in accordance to manufacturers’ guidance and in the long term save us money by not having to replace poorly maintained equipment. The daily maintenance issues which arise in school will be added to the system and allocated to an individual. This again allows the Premises Manager to ensure work is complete and that individuals are taking responsibility for their work. It is hard to quantify the benefit, but for the Premises Manager here at South Craven School, it has proved to be a very valuable tool. More importantly, it allows her to provide the assurance to the Head and Governors that H&S checks are being done. The Head has access to the databases which he can check to see what has been done and what is outstanding.
SecurityWe have all key building doors tagged and the Premises Team scan each door when they lock up each evening. This has helped ensure that the school is secure and if there were to be a break in, we could confirm all doors we secure. In addition, it has helped us to be confident that our new member of the caretaking team is undertaking the securing of the site in an orderly manner and that he also can be assured he has completed the job satisfactorily. We are due to renew our security contract for external night & weekend patrols and have been dissatisfied with the recording system of the contractor. However, we are specifying that our Asset Trac system must be used to tag certain points around the school so we can be sure the terms of the contract are being met. We will have control over the system and therefore will not have to tolerate a contract provider saying their own system is not working due to a variety of different reasons.
InsurancePrior to becoming an Academy our insurance for buildings and contents was managed through North Yorkshire County Council. The basis on which they estimated the cost of contents was by using a percentage of the overall value of the buildings. This has over estimated the value considerably in comparison to our valuation on Asset Trac. We are currently negotiating our new insurance policy cover, but the premium will reduce as a result of this more accurate figure.
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