Asset Management

A Quick Guide to Physical Asset Management

A woman practices physical asset management using a tablet.

Every business has assets—long-term investments like equipment, machinery, and technology. And to properly keep track of these items, physical asset management is essential. 

This article will define physical assets, discuss the importance of physical asset management, and reveal why more and more companies are turning to physical asset management software to keep track of their inventory.

 

What are physical assets?

Physical assets, also known as tangible assets, are long-term investments that can be touched, held, or seen. This includes machinery, buildings, land, equipment, tools, precious metals, diamonds, and so on. 

On a balance sheet, tangible assets are listed before intangible assets. 

 

What is physical asset management software?

Physical asset management software is an inventory tracking solution that allows you to organize and track physical assets. Whether your business owns a few dozen laptops or thousands of vehicles, the right asset management app can simplify and optimize your asset tracking system. 

While you could use a sheet of paper or a spreadsheet to track physical assets, only physical asset management software allows you to create a visual, digital dashboard of all your assets. Using this end-to-end dashboard, it’s easy to see what investments you’ve got where, even if you have equipment, tools, machinery, or technology that frequently changes hands. 

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Why is physical asset management important?

Physical asset management is essential for various reasons, including the need to protect your investments, reduce inventory loss, and speed up tedious processes like year-end inventory counts and business tax preparation. 

Here’s a little bit more about some of the most important reasons to practice physical asset management:

1. Get organized—and keep it that way

When your company begins practicing physical asset management, there’s an onboarding period that requires a fair amount of auditing, entering item details into your inventory system, and asset tagging

And while using smart inventory software like Sortly can speed up this process, don’t write off this “getting started” period as gruntwork. In truth, setting up your asset management system is the perfect time to optimize systems, clean out your warehouses, and set into place standard operating procedures for handling your company’s inventory.

With a little planning and help from a physical asset software solution, you can transform your company into a place that stays organized for good. 

2. Keep track of high-value items

Physical asset management is the only effective way to keep tabs on high-value tangible assets. Without a system in place to track these items, you’re risking a costly loss.

An asset management system can help you clarify what you’ve got, where it is, what condition it’s in, and who had it last. 

3. Perform quick, easy audits and inventory counts

When you use physical asset management software, you can streamline even the most tedious inventory counts. Whether you conduct year-end inventory counts or cycle counts, the right inventory app is sure to save you time. 

What’s more, you’ll be able to access all the information about your assets by simply scanning their barcodes or QR codes with your phone or tablet. That’s because inventory apps like Sortly allow you to use your device’s camera as a barcode or QR code reader. 

4. Unlock more efficient, accurate accounting 

When you have an asset checklist available, it’s that much easier for your accountants to quickly review the value of all your company’s physical assets. And if they need to prepare a balance sheet or claim depreciation, that information is all stored in your inventory system, too.

 

How to get started with physical asset management

Wondering how you can get your company’s physical assets under control? When organizing your physical assets with inventory software, it’s best to follow these steps:

1. Get organized—and asset tag

You already know the importance of getting your inventory organized. It really is the first step to a successful asset management system. Clean out your shelves and storage units, figure out what’s where, and consider adding asset tags to all your physical assets.

2. Link everything to your software

As you tag your inventory, make sure to create a detailed item profile for everything your company owns. While this is definitely hard work, you’ll notice that after the initial onboarding, you’re spending less and less time managing your inventory every day.

3. Create an asset checklist 

Once you’ve gotten set up on your asset management software, generate a report that lists all the assets in each of your company’s storage locations. Just like that, you’ve created highly-detailed asset checklists you can use for anything from corporate audits to maintenance scheduling. 

4. Remain consistent

Physical asset management software works best when you and your team are dedicated to maintaining its accuracy. That means deciding how and when you’ll update your inventory system, and sticking to that strategy. 

Fortunately, the best inventory management software has tons of impactful automation features that’ll save you time, money, and stress. From low-stock alerts to reminders about upcoming expiration and warranty end dates, your company is sure to reap the rewards of a modern, digital inventory system.

 

About Sortly

Sortly is a top-rated inventory app designed to help you take control of your physical asset management. Highly customizable and easy to use, you can start getting your business organized today.

Sortly has a host of physical asset tracking capabilities designed to keep you organized while saving you tons of time. These features include:

  • In-app barcode and QR code scanning
  • An easy-to-use barcode and QR code generator for tagging unlabeled assets
  • Customizable, printable reports and spreadsheets perfect for creating asset checklists
  • Key reminders about important dates, including maintenance and warranty reminders 
  • The ability to add tons of customized details to each asset in your inventory 
  • A flexible, intuitive app that’s easy enough for your whole team to use

Ready to get started? Claim your free, two-week trial of Sortly today.