A Guide to Identifying and Fixing 7 Asset Tracking Problems for Your Business

Asset tracking problems resulting in lost revenue?

Companies acquire a range of assets to augment their value and income. While these aim to facilitate business operations, their excessive quantity means that companies are constantly losing them. They contend with several asset tracking problems regularly and end up pulling down their productivity.

Business activities need to be recorded as either tangible or intangible accounts in the balance. Tangible assets are mostly listed as plant property and equipment whereas intangible assets comprise of patents and brand names. Intangible business assets are worth more than just money and have the ability to add to future growth prospects.

All types of tools and equipment under the organization’s possession need to be tracked. This can be done by designing either barcodes or QR codes for assets. These asset tags can help alleviate asset tracking problems by letting you monitor who is using your asset and how.

What are the benefits of asset tags?

Such data is extremely important when it comes to audits and compliance. Here are some benefits of asset tracking to help you gain operational efficacy:

  • Real-time management: A web-based system for recording asset movements lets you filter your data. This makes room for refined information and eliminates duplication in your system. 
  • Opportunities to scale: Unlike premise-based systems, a cloud-based program allows you to upgrade your database as the business expands. A robust tracking mechanism will identify demand and waste trends and let you prepare for future growth as necessary. 
  • Lower administrative costs: An automated technique for tracking asset whereabouts is likely to decrease the amount of time spent on locating equipment. This not only increases organizational efficiency but improves staff productivity as well. 

In addition to attaining these economies of scale, efficient asset tracking also helps reduce financial losses by resolving asset tracking problems and detecting malpractices. The best way to deal with loopholes in your asset management strategy is to identify challenges and devise ways to overcome them. You can control these five shortcomings with the tracking system of your choice:

1. Loss of assets through misplacement  

Equipment loss and displacement is a major problem faced by asset managers. Reports show that firms can lose up to $1 billion worth of equipment due to poor security. In order to control loss through theft or misplacement, companies should implement a robust tracking system.

An asset tracking solution lets you label all your tools and equipment with barcode or RFID technology. Both options have their pros and cons and can be selected upon an in-depth analysis of the company’s needs. After making the asset tag selection best-suited for your organization’s needs, you have to assign a unique serial number to each one of your assets.

Once all your assets are tagged, their IDs will enable a system of check-in and checkout monitoring. Every time an employee wants to use a certain device, they have to sign it against their name in the official database. This information allows companies to track ownership in case of unauthorized usage. Closely monitoring all your assets will help reduce costs associated with retrieving lost or stolen items.   

2. Untimely stock outs or excess production

When it comes to stocking up on a particular asset, determining the right amount can be tricky. While dealing with stock management, you are likely to face shortages or an excess of assets. This can incur overhead expenses or lead to delays in workflows.

Why do companies deal with inaccurate stock levels so often? Mostly because of an inadequate system to gauge the optimal quantity of stock required.  To deal with this problem in the most effective manner, companies opt for an inventory tracking module. Such a system allows setting minimum thresholds alerts for all assets. Whenever this limit is reached, an automated purchase order is created and the concerned vendor is notified.

On the contrary, excess stock takes up warehouse space and runs obsolete after a predefined period. To avoid such mishaps, it is advised to extensively study consumption patterns so that accurate demand for an asset can be calculated.

3. Frequent equipment breakdowns

A survey shows ageing equipment and lack of time to perform maintenance as the leading cause of unscheduled downtime. Companies suffering from prolonged equipment failures need to upgrade their service programs.

This can be done by implementing a rigorous maintenance schedule. By using automated tracking software, firms can routinize repairs and maintenance for the length of the equipment’s lifecycle. Preventive maintenance is extremely successful in eliminating downtime by: 

  • Increasing the uptime and useful life of assets 
  • Boosting efficiency and productivity of tools 
  • Lowering costs of overall maintenance 
  • Reducing labor downtime

Once the calibration management has been carried out, employees can be notified with emails. This offers employees time to make alternate arrangements so no work tasks are delayed and wasted labor costs are minimized. Organizations can also elevate their performance levels by keeping equipment in top shape. 

4. Event failure due to tool unavailability

Organizations hold a multitude of external and internal meetings and conferences daily. These could pertain to important agenda gatherings or sometimes office recreational activities. Regardless of the objective, office events should be planned well in advance.

Any standard asset tracking software shows you which assets are available, reserved, checked out or under maintenance, making it easy for you to plan events. Enhanced asset visibility allows conflict-free bookings. By booking the required assets, managers can make sure they won’t have to suffer on the day of the event. A dashboard calendar on a tracking app lets you view asset and venue status as per the availability.

This makes it easy to reserve the tools you need for your meeting or conference. Plan your events successfully without any delays with pre-booked equipment and venues

5. Meeting regulatory certifications

Organizations usually have to handle a lot of equipment.  Ensuring all assets comply with the terms and conditions of their regulatory certifications can be a challenge. Small and medium businesses in the industry are heavily regulated. To ensure that you meet these requirements, you need to have an accurate database showing clear asset ownership information.

Moreover, regulatory compliance often means preparing in-depth reports, which can be a time-consuming process. While most companies struggle with this, there is a simple way to go about it. By using tracking software, you can record each and every activity related to your asset. An automated system lets you maintain error-free data which can then be used to conduct audits. Having all the necessary calibration, depreciation and replenishment records enables you to achieve compliance easily and efficiently.   

6. Inaccurate cost forecasting

Using an on-site, physical tracking system  to identify breakdowns, schedule maintenance, and detect asset deficiencies is an outdated practice. The digital age of technology offers huge advancements when it comes to tracking assets and forecasting future costs and needs. Small and medium businesses can now use cloud-based asset management systems to effectively track, maintain and address the internal asset demands for their business as part of their Lifecycle management

Asset-intensive ventures rely considerably on the operational capabilities of their equipment. Any expected breakdowns and deficiencies need to be identified well in advance in order to ensure accurate cost estimation. Tagging and assigning reference codes at the time of mass procurement provides ease in terms of tracking each individual asset and making sure all expenses are documented. Not only does this ensure smooth functionality of the assets, but it also helps in making accurate forecasts about upcoming maintenance costs and monitoring depreciation.

An asset tracking software enables companies to track work order costs like labour hours and inventories consumed during maintenance. These estimations can then be incorporated in budgeted costs to chalk out a report of expected maintenance and overheads ahead of time. 

7. Lack of visibility

 At the most basic, asset visibility refers to the acquisition of accurate, up-to-date data on the location, movement, identity, and status of your business’ assets. For instance, records about the equipment, supplies, and materials right from the time of their procurement are all included under asset visibility. In addition to this, asset visibility entails tracking at the very base level and addresses the entire journey an asset undertakes in the long chain of operations within the company. 

One of the major goals for businesses across the globe is to have complete visibility of all their assets. Companies carry out extensive practices to ensure that the resources they have acquired are being utilized at the right place at the right time. Primarily, it becomes too tedious to keep a pinpoint track of individual assets manually if your business houses its assets at multiple locations. Asset visibility enables organizations to determine the inventory of assets at a particular location even ahead of time by chalking out a roadmap for the utilization period of the asset. 

Read more: 5 Ways to Improve Asset Visibility Using IT Asset Tracking Software

Without prior information of the asset type and category, it is almost impossible to predict where individual assets would end up – especially if they are relatively smaller, like laptops or appliances. However, organizations can easily track and monitor items with updated information on a cloud-based asset management tools. The limitless options to tag, flag, or manage assets on an integrated virtual asset tracking program have allowed organizations to achieve maximum visibility on their assets efficiently. Integrate your database with an asset management and tracking system to hold complete information over the lifecycle of your asset, making it easier to track and manage your asset operations error-free. 

Asset tracking software: The ultimate solution to all your asset tracking problems

The way forward for any type of business is to have a set of clearly defined goals and objectives. Once that is done, you can strategize on how to achieve them. For any business, large or small, a primary goal is to increase their ROI. The first step in this feat is to establish a reliable tracking system for gathering real-time data regarding your assets and in turn, business performance. 

The next step is to analyze this information for future forecasting. Doing this is important because current company trends hint towards the next season’s consumption patterns. For this purpose, customized reports can be generated to predict future demand. An in-depth study of these reports also reveals the weaknesses and strengths in asset utilization and how these can be dealt with.

A smart decision would be to adjust the management strategy to tackle these asset tracking problems, eliminate inefficient practices and use existing resources productively to amplify positive outcomes. All this is only possible if you choose the right tracking system for your business. Get started on this today to boost your productivity tomorrow. 

About EZOfficeInventory

EZOfficeInventory is the leading asset management software used by companies around the world. Use our solution for real-time asset management, accurate machine downtime tracking, and more.

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