WHERE are your physical assets? — It is not a simple question
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Contributed by Ilanit Benor, Customer Implementation Specialist at E-ISG Asset Intelligence
When I joined E-ISG Asset Intelligence three months ago, I didn’t know much about the world of asset management. To me, asset management meant little stickers on the side of the equipment. I KNEW it was important to track your assets. If assets are not tracked, an organization can lose millions of dollars. If they deal with government property, they can also take the risk of not being compliant with government regulations. The effect of that can be exponential.
As I learn more about asset management, I’ve realized there’s more to it than keeping a list of whose desk that computer sits on. If you build a good structure for your data, as your organization grows and evolves, your assets will be maintained and remain an “asset” rather than a “liability”.
When an organization first begins the process of tracking assets, the obvious question is “Where are they”? That’s a great question but that WHERE is much bigger than a desk or a room. The asset managers need to think of the following:
- Where do we do business?
- What are the types of locations where the assets are stored/ utilized?
- How deeply do we want to track the assets?
Where do we do business?
At the top level, is your organization operating in different states, campuses, or buildings. Organizations need to take a top down view of their locations. Begin with the biggest structures and work down from there. You must know where you are globally before you begin thinking about where the assets are located.
What are the types of LOCATIONS where the assets are stored/ utilized?
Are your assets located in administrative offices, warehouses or laboratories? Knowing what types of locations you use can help you keep stock of what types of assets you need and control errors that occur with assets being in places where they would have no use.
How deeply do we want to track the assets?
Do you want to know what building they are in? Room? Shelf? Bin? Drilling down to exact locations can help an organization manage reordering needs as well as a much quicker search and utilization of important assets.
Here’s the bottom line: You have many decisions you can make when planning asset management. Ultimately, the first decision will need to answer the question WHERE.