In an ideal world, asset managers would have a complete grasp of all equipment within their organisation, with up-to-date details of each item maintained to a high standard. Unfortunately, we don’t live in an ideal world and other priorities get in the way.
For a lot of companies, it is only at the end of the year that the importance of asset management becomes apparent, with members of IT and Finance departments scrambling across premises to get all of the information required. In this rush, it is inevitable that crucial information will be missed out.
As Benjamin Franklin said, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” This saying proves especially pertinent with fixed asset management. The benefits of year-round maintenance of the register cannot be understated. At the RAM blog we’ve compiled some top tips to ensure that this time next year; you won’t have to carry out extensive tidying exercises to get your asset information presentable!
1. Collate all asset information into a central system!
If all information is available within one system, asset details held are far more reliable. If data is being stored across disparate systems, inconsistencies are likely. Users from multiple different departments might have entries for the same items and it will be difficult for organisations to know which system’s account is accurate with these unconnected records being updated independently. The best way to dodge this issue is to get all information entered into a specialist fixed asset accounting tool!
2. Save time by utilising a system that integrates with the finance module at your organisation!
There are fixed asset systems out there (cough) that offer full integration with your financial package of choice. This means that once all assets are capitalised, depreciation is calculated and accounting events are added into the system, journals can be posted directly. This cuts down manual processes massively and saves a vast amount of time.
3. Make asset tracking a routine exercise!
Nobody likes traipsing around a number of sites to scan everything their organisation owns. It is especially arduous when the scanning exercise has been left until the end of the year and asset data has not been updated on a regular basis. Making this a routine job has a number of benefits, especially when tracking movements between locations or users. Each time assets are issued or moved, they should be scanned to update their status. Doing so improves the audit trail of each item immensely and reduces the risk of loss or theft of expensive equipment!
4. Forecast depreciation into future years to improve financial planning!
Forecasting allows organisations to analyse the effect that depreciation charges will have against assets and enables finance departments to make informed decisions about items and when it might be time to replace them.
5. Spreadsheets alone leave a lot to be desired when it comes to fixed asset management!
Spreadsheets undoubtedly have their uses, but providing an adequate asset register is not one of them. Sure, it is possible to maintain a passable list of all of the equipment at your organisation on one, but they lack some of the core functionality required for excellent asset management. There is no comprehensive audit trail, no automated integration with the finance system, depreciation has to be calculated manually and the data within them is prone to error (one typo and your balance sheet is out for the year!).
Real Asset Management provides its customers with specialist asset register software that helps with compliance to financial regulations and simplifies asset management processes. If you would like more information about how your organisation could benefit from RAM’s solution, contact us today at firstname.lastname@example.org or call on +44 (0)1689 892 137