Streamline Asset Management Tracking With Asset Inventory
First Bankers Trust learned the critical lesson: An upfront investment of time and effort will save down the road.
Effective asset management is a mission-critical task for any company looking to avoid overpayment of taxes and insurance, reduce the cost of ownership, and comply with the latest regulatory mandates. But without the right tools to track inventory and disposal of assets, you could be saddled with incomplete or inaccurate information.
That’s why companies such as First Bankers Trust Company, a community bank based in Quincy, Illinois, rely on Asset Inventory™ to automate the management and reporting of moveable fixed assets. According to Brooke Venvertloh, a staff accountant at First Bankers Trust, prior to installing Asset Inventory, the task of matching the bank’s physical assets against the data in its accounting system was time consuming and cumbersome.
Different departments at the bank used spreadsheets to log their inventory, but there was no central repository that consolidated the data. In addition, the task of matching up inventory against serial numbers required staff in each location to log this information manually. This information then needed to be entered into the bank’s accounting system.
Once the decision to implement Asset Inventory was made, the bank conducted a comprehensive inventory of all assets. Machine-readable asset labels were affixed to all assets, including computers, monitors, printers, coin sorting machines, and furniture. A hand-held scanning device streamlined the collection of data, which was then seamlessly transferred to Asset Inventory. This process allowed First Bankers Trust to track the physical location and condition of assets for more accurate assessment of insurance payments. Now, when an item is disposed, the bank can immediately update its records and avoid paying unnecessary insurance.
“Our asset inventory process is much faster now,” says Venvertloh. “Our entire inventory has been identified and tagged and the data in our accounting system corresponds to this information. Now, when an asset is disposed of, I can go to Asset Inventory, match up the barcodes, and update our records.”
If you are looking to streamline your asset inventory process, consider these three critical steps:
1. Prepare and Plan. After installing the hardware and software you need, review your current asset inventory to determine whether each asset is identified individually and if your data is complete and consistent.
2. Conduct Physical Asset Inventory. Label all assets with a bar code and collect data about each asset’s location, condition, serial number, tag number, and cost center.
3. Analyze and Reconcile the Results. Cross-check the results of your physical inventory against your asset records to identify ghost assets — those that are still on your ledger but can’t be physically accounted for. Match, scan, and attach corresponding invoices to your asset records.
While there is a certain amount of upfront work involved, once you’re up and running with Asset Inventory, you’ll save time and enjoy more accurate recordkeeping in the future.