Reduce Your Costs and Increase Revenue – Know Your Poles Attributes

Posted by Ashley Little on March 12, 2014
know_your_poles_attributesThere is an unbelievable amount of data to keep track of when dealing with utility poles. Each pole has a plethora of data attributes associated with it.
  • What is the pole's location?
  • How many companies have equipment attached to the pole?
  • What attachments are on the pole?
  • Does each attachment have all necessary permits and paperwork?
  • When was the utility pole last inspected or serviced?
Multiply all of that information by the total number of utility poles your company owns. That is how much information that needs to be tracked from day to day. The task can feel overwhelming. If joint use assets are not managed well it can cost your business a lot of money. If you are not able to keep track of the paperwork for attachments on the poles you own, you could end up with illegal or unlicensed attachments – bootlegs. In addition, if you neglect inspecting and servicing your poles regularly, they eventually weaken and fall, causing damage. Of course, you as the pole owner are not charged penalties for illegal attachments. You have the ability to charge the attachers the penalty or fine. In 2011, the FCC removed the cap for penalties a pole owner can charge an illegal attacher. Therefore, capturing physical asset data attributes on utility poles is a requirement for managing joint use. A best practice is to collect all of the available and relevant data on each pole you own, organize and categorize it in a database for easy access. So when one of your attachers has a new attachment, you can easily verify that all the proper permitting documentation is in place. Furthermore, you can use the database to find the poles where new attachments are going, based on their location, and make sure no overload issues will occur.In addition to storing attachment data for each pole, you can include information such as:
  • When the pole was last inspected
  • When the pole is due for the next inspection
  • And an historical record of all work performed on the singular asset from placement to removal
You can even schedule reminders for inspections and service, to ensure the utility poles you own do not fall into disrepair. Employing a joint use inventory management software platform that allows you to capture and organize this data can help avoid expensive service costs by keeping your poles well-maintained. In addition, capturing physical asset data attributes on utility poles gives you a practical communication system to connect to all your attachers, joint owners, engineers and third-party contractors. Better data improves efficiency, which can help you save money in a number of ways, such as improved billing practices and fostering better relationships with your partner companies.Capturing physical asset data attributes on utility poles will help cut costs, improve efficiency, and increase revenue. The data you collect makes your company more organized, and improved inspections and service make your poles safer and help them to last longer. Certainly there is an expense when investing in a quality software platform to collect and organize your data to allow you to better plan and take appropriate action. But there is a significant return on that investment. Joint use notification systems are an investment in the future of any business that jointly holds assets – and a best practice.
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