Australians are living longer, and that trend is expected to continue leading to a rapid increase in the number of older Australians and an increased demand for aged care.
It is predicted that by 2058 there will be more than 1.5 million Australians aged 85 years or more. To give some perspective, in 2019 there were just over 503,685.
With this comes an increase in demand for aged care facilities. The government has recognised this with their investment in aged care having grown by 161% since 2012-13. As part of this plan to ensure senior Australians receive the care they deserve is an increased investment in aged care infrastructure and assets.
Assets form a key component of delivering services to the aged care community. Given the sheer number of assets within aged care facilities as well as the regular movement of their location, it is not an easy task to keep on top of and can be very time-consuming and require a high attention to detail. Asset information is often recorded in multiple siloed systems and aren’t kept up to date, resulting in low levels of confidence in the information and being unable to see how best to manage assets and associated funds.
Less time managing multiple systems, more time on patient care
Integrated asset management software is key to aged care providers being able to spend less time managing multiple data systems and more time delivering high quality care. It is essential in reducing operating costs and wastage, streamlining business processes and managing compliance through improved asset visibility, accuracy and efficiency. Systems typically feature asset tracking, work order management and maintenance scheduling, helping to improve the efficiency of operations.
From day-to-day operations to long-term asset planning, asset management software enables providers to look at the full cost and performance of every asset so resources can be put to best possible use. It can aid in understanding the maintenance expenditure required to ensure assets meet statutory compliance and performance obligations while making sustainable decisions about equipment to make sure they can continue to provide the best patient and resident care effectively. It also helps providers understand the future costs of maintaining facilities at a granular level, resulting in more certainty and fewer surprises in unplanned capital and maintenance works.
With this technology, aged care providers can keep track of the maintenance needs and costs of equipment, facilities and other physical assets as well as managing all types of contractor work including planned inspections, scheduled maintenance and reactive work to optimise work scheduling and utilisation. Better contractor management means aged care providers have visibility into what work is assigned to contractors, when those contractors are coming on-site to complete the work, knowing that they’ve done the job, verifying that the job has been done properly and then issuing payment.
Full project lifecycle management
The significant demand and growth the aged care industry is likely to see in years to come means providers will likely need to construct new facilities and be able to efficiently and cohesively manage project budgets, estimations, forecasting and cost tracking.
Asset management software can help providers successfully meet long-term capital objectives on time and within budget by being able to identify projects early on and control and govern a project throughout its full lifecycle. This provides the ability to allocate the necessary capital spend across the relevant investment portfolios to ensure the services they plan to implement get delivered as a result of the upgrade or acquisition of assets. This includes effective control and management of costs across projects and delivering projects to a standard within risk profile and agreed timelines.
Asset management reporting then allows internal and external stakeholders to report on and analyse the total performance of a project, understand the lessons learned and use that for future projects.
Due to the aged care industry being so highly regulated and competitive, providers are under increasing revenue and compliance pressure. The seamless tracking, monitoring, and reporting capabilities of asset management software help providers to maximise eligibility for available funding.
Global ERP software company TechnologyOne empowers over 160 health and community services organisations with their software and its Sales Director for Health and Community Services, Vanessa Devine, has heard first-hand why there’s such a need for products like TechnologyOne’s Enterprise Asset Management.
“Aged care providers are already under a lot of strain, which is only going to increase as our ageing population grows. Providers are going to need more space, more staff, and more facilities to cater to this increase in patients, and they are going to need to do it soon,” said Vanessa Devine, Sales Director for Health & Community Services at TechnologyOne.
“Our customers have found that our Enterprise Asset Management solution, particularly Project Lifecycle Management, has been able to help them plan for the future, and deliver new facilities, under budget and before deadline. This has been crucial for aged care providers working with tight budgets and limited time.”