What a start to the 2010, we love all the excitement and promise the new year brings. Just in case you were too busy and did not have the opportunity to see our blogs and voter links as they were published, we have summarized them for you here. Please enjoy them over the weekend and be sure to check back for new articles next week .. You can find a complete listing on the Mintek Blog.

This weeks articles were in part a tribute to past historical disasters and an analysis of how government (Fed, State, Local) can minimize the impact of budget cuts. The most popular article of the week reflected sadly on some well know tragic disasters and asked if we were learning from them.

1. How Remembering Historical Disasters May Save The Future

Author: Stuart Smith

The article takes a look at selected major disasters from the Utility, Aviation and Mining industries as well as a few natural disasters and examines some of the maintenance issues that led to such great tragedy. Three Mile Island, Space Shuttle Challenger and Hurricane Katrina are all included as well as many others.

Key Point: Lessons learned include the value of proper preventive maintenance and inspections, making sure maintenance is required and not an option, listening to your staff and adequate training and most importantly the cost of cutbacks can be astronomically expensive.

2.How Governments Can Beat Budget Slashing – Part II

Author: Stuart Smith

Part II takes a look at government facilities using prisons as an example to demonstrate the effectiveness of using advanced technology and planning to reduce short and long term costs. Referencing an article by group the impact of using best practices can lower work order cost as much as 25%.

Key point: Government facilities can learn a few lessons from the best practices used by mid-large size companies by integrating technology with formal real estate and facilities planning.

3. How Governments Can Beat Budget Slashing – Part I

Author: Stuart Smith

At least 43 States have reported budget cuts from 2008. The most heavily impacted areas have been Public Health Care, Education, Public Assistance Programs and state facilities. The article asks if state governments are addressing expenses issues outside of the normal knee jerk reactions such as cutting staff or closing down facilities.

Key Point: Hosted SaaS CMMS software would allow state governments the ability to harness in expenses both short term and long term.

Read Relevant Articles That We Found Last Week

But wait there is more. In addition, we have found several more articles that you might find to be interesting. The 5 best this week are:

1. Maintenance Management: Contract Maintenance or Not? (Part 1 of 2)

Author: Idhammar of IDCON

what kind of maintenance should or should not be contracted out and the reasons for choosing either option.

Key Point: When to outsource and when to keep in house.

2.Why Enterprise Asset Management is Vital for Any Company

Author: Posting on World Village

Asset management by organizations and entrepreneurs has shifted from the traditional short term planning type to ensuring that its asset expenditures and utilities are geared towards achieving longer-term returns.

Key Point: Planning and management of assets, costs, and maintenance should all be done to increase the life cycle of the assets and for the business to perform more effectively even in the face of rigid competition.

3. How to separate the men from the boys in maintenance management

Author: Chris Grau

Chris discusses seven techniques that will make a CMMS implementation successful. Of particular note, is the understanding that successful implementation requires a fair good change management processes. The link has changed as this has since been made into an ebook.

Key Point: Buy-In, preparation, training and follow up are all critical success factors

4. Elevator Efficiency

Author: Sasha Bailey, LEED AP

Sasha discusses efficiency effecting cost containment for elevators using by considering options ranging from simple cosmetic cab refurbishments to complete elevator system overhauls, all of which will provide dual benefits: to the environment, and to the bottom line.

Key Point: Modernizing and upgrading elevators can save you valuable bottom line dollars.

5. How Small and Medium-Sized Businesses Can Plan For ERP Implementation

Author: Johnathan Gross

Mr. Gross outlines certain steps SMEs can take to mitigate ERP implementation failure risks in the subsequent phase of implementation: the planning phase by formalizing the planning and integration stages..

Key Point: Planning the change is not an option.