A physical asset is any asset that is fixed, meaning that it is a tangible object or property that cannot easily be changed into cash. Some examples of physical assets may include machines, tools, and even a factory or plant where production is performed. Physical asset management is the practice of keeping inventory of physical assets and ensuring that they are in optimal states of health. When practiced well, this kind of management can reduce cost, improve the efficiency of day-to-day operations, and reduce workloads of inventory managers and other professionals who may be responsible for tracking equipment. Some of the best tips for physical asset management might include creating a position solely for this task, using the proper software, and practicing renewal and repair of assets in early stages of decreased functionality.
Many businesses spread physical asset management across various departments. In other words, a supervisor or manager in one department might be responsible for all of the tools and machines used by his or her team. This includes monitoring the optimization of assets and keeping track of inventory. Many specialists believe that this method not only weakens effects of asset management, but may cause inefficiency in other areas. Instead, many specialists urge that businesses create positions solely for physical asset management.
Asset management software can be helpful in many different contexts. These computer programs can assist physical asset managers in recording numbers of certain pieces of equipments. Dates for inspection, delivery dates, and statistics regarding rates of production can be monitored and analyzed with some software. A number of programs can print and read bar codes, allowing for ease of reference when taking inventory. Bills can also be produced with some programs, enabling asset managers to create budgets for needed equipment and materials.
Keeping equipment in optimal health is often a key component of physical asset management. This means scheduling repairs and updates to computer operated tools when needed. Many specialists in this field believe that a common mistake made my many asset managers is waiting until equipment is broken before scheduling repairs.
By continually repairing and even replacing physical assets, money can be saved over the long term. By waiting until an item is not functioning at all, asset managers risk having to entirely replace equipment. While continually updating and inspecting assets might be costly in the short-term, losses tend to be minor and can be made up for with increased efficiency and higher rates of production. A broken asset can cost more for repair or replacement and even slow or stop production.