Back-to-School: A Quick Lesson in Property Management Standards
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Guest contributor: Amanda Watkins
What do back-to-school season and equipment inventory audits have to do with each other? Well besides occurring around the same time, they actually can leave similar feelings of dread. If you’re facing the task of auditing your assets and haven’t even started to inventory that equipment, it can feel like showing up to a Beverly Hills high-school, wearing last year’s trends. It’s an overwhelming and scary feeling; like even though you haven’t started, you’re already wrong.
Luckily there’s help – for both the fashion and inventory impaired! Knowing where to start auditing your inventory and knowing “how” to do an inventory properly are such huge pieces of the puzzle it can often leave people scratching their heads and wondering where to start and if they’re doing it right at all. Over the years, NPMA and ASTM have developed some awesome guidelines and standards to help you figure out the mess that is your current inventory.
Understanding the industry standards for inventorying your durable, movable property is really a no-brainer. Audits provide invaluable insights and best practices for maximizing the performance of the equipment in your inventory. Whether it’s during the day, or after hours, your inventory won’t be a success unless you create a workflow for this auditing process.
Assessing loss, damage or destruction (LDD) as part of your inventory process is directly related to your company’s success. Being proactive and determining the LDD of your property operations will save time and money down the road; so much money that there’s a chance your company can invest in better uniforms (something a bit more stylish, no?) – and not show up to “school” in last year’s threads.
Thirdly, you must determine the life cycle cost of ownership of assets (LCC) of personal property. LCC can divide your equipment inventory into four stages:
Divide and conquer- that’s my method for inventorying assets. Start with your plan, know how everything is acquired, used and disposed, what its overall costs will be and then get it done. All of those time management skills they kept telling us we would need back in school are going to finally pay off here. An equipment inventory is a lot different than an English essay. Not too many bosses will give an extension, but luckily you have the ASTM standards which could also be called “Asset Management Cliff’s Notes.”
Learning about these standards before you start your inventory is a great idea, but if you’re already there and lost, take a few minutes to get into these standards and I guarantee you’ll save yourself a lot of headaches in the future. Equipment management doesn’t have to be so daunting! High school on the other hand? Let’s just all say a big thank you we’ve all finished with that!
Check out the Intelligent Asset Manager’s property-management-standard cheat sheet and be sure to like us on Facebook for more helpful tips: