In any organization, the inference of asset tracking may vary for every industry. And their requirements will range accordingly for a manufacturing company, logistics company, media house for tagging of assets. The mapping of assets is done on the basis of locations and their movement trail in real time. For a network of four-wheeler service station; the calibration of machines, the tools & equipment tools will function as assets. The primary objective of the entire exercise is to ascertain that all the apparatuses, equipment are never lost and properly maintained at all times. It can also help in tracking the equipment repair and usage history, and hence estimate the useful life of the equipment. Some organizations who do not wish to acquire assets of their own might also track the leased/rented assets taken on long or short term lease.
To accomplish all the activities mentioned above on a real-time web dashboard for showing assets in each location and in-house facility, the ability to track the movement-trail of every individual, manage assets, repair and maintain schedules of preventive maintenance for assets is extremely important for optimum productivity.
Some other businesses may, however, just limit themselves to spreadsheets and excel files for maintaining a register of fixed assets, their maintenance history, and periodic audits to ascertain their physical presence.
Somehow, all of this can be done using multiple technologies available and streamline the asset tracking process. However, there are no thumb rules for which technology, which process will be the most useful. It is completely dependent on the scale of business and requirement of the ecosystem.
Barcodes and QR Codes are the traditional tags used in the market currently for uniquely identifying an item on scanning. The moment you decide to deploy the barcodes/QR codes for asset tracking purposes instead of entering the data manually, you can avoid all errors associated to manual entries and enable the system for fast asset tracking. This can further strengthen the system in the following ways:
a) Scan and include various assets at the time of delivery to the office/warehouse.
b) Understand the usage of the asset by the employees/leased to a client, due for repair or routine maintenance.
c) Analyze the current condition of the asset (damages, repairs) using a photograph.
d) Access the list the assets in a particular location/client’s site with employees.
e) Derive the inference from the audit trail about the total useful life of an asset.
f) And lastly, identify missing/misplaced assets with periodic audit for assets.
Even if your assets are constantly in motion, a meticulous effort can still track the assets and minimize the loss of assets.
Few business scenarios which can help in understanding the implication of asset tracking in your industry are illustrated below:
Tracking of assets in Logistics Industry – It can help in tracking the assets that are stored in a warehouse or shipped to a client or returned by a client.
Tracking assets in Real Estate Industry – It can help in tracking the rental/leased assets, inventory levels of the assets, location of assets, broken or misplaced assets after the termination of lease agreements.
Tracking audio-video assets in Media Industry – It can assist in tracking the high-end equipment that is allotted to different employees for an assignment.
Tracking work tools and machines in Automobile Service Industry – It can initiate the audit trail for all the work tools and machines, their maintenance schedules and thus estimate the total useful life of the equipment.
Tracking of assets in IT Industry – It can track the movement of rented/ leased assets to customers and taken from vendors.
By tagging your assets and equipment using barcodes/QR codes, can help in the process optimization at multiple levels in an organization. Each barcode will store certain information through some attributes like serial number, description, date of purchase or even customized labels. This will bring in a greater amount of transparency, traceability, productivity and hence lead to customer satisfaction.