What are an SMEs fixed assets? Fixed assets are assets that are purchased by a business for use within that business and can include land, machines, office equipment, trademarks, tablets, pcs, mobile phones and uniforms.
For many companies like security and events companies uniforms, mobile phones and tablets are key pieces of equipment that help identify, brand and communicate with staff. If I start by quoting from FRS 15 it says “Financial Reporting Standard 15 ‘Tangible Fixed Assets’ sets out the principles of accounting for the initial measurement, valuation and depreciation of tangible fixed assets with the exception of investment properties.” In order to comply with FRS 15 and make your auditor’s life easier and thus your bill cheaper, you should keep a fixed asset register or listing.
Why keep a fixed asset register or asset list?
As a business owner or entrepreneur you may have spent quite a lot of the company’s hard earned cash on fixed assets. As an individual you would notice and be upset if your mobile phone went missing so as a business owner you should want to know where all the company’s assets are. The loss of one may not be significant but the loss of many may be, so keep a track of them all. If you have a fixed asset register or asset tracking list as part of perhaps, a workforce software program it allows a company to keep track of any and all of its fixed assets that are not under its direct control such as uniforms.
But as a security or events company I issue lots of uniforms
As with many companies you may be issuing uniforms to all of your staff. You therefore need to choose a system that creates assets easily allowing you to assign them a value. For uniforms in particular, it would also be useful if it kept your staff’s sizes as part of their record.
The system you choose should keep:
- a note of the cost of the asset
- its serial number
- when purchased
- the date it was given to the member of staff, if they paid a deposit,
- a copy of their signature and the asset's release or acceptance
- form or return form if it has been given back.
In an ideal world the member of staff should always have view access to the list of assets given to him as well as the forms he has signed. This level of visibility and transparency avoids misunderstandings and potential loss of assets on staff leaving. Then when it comes time for your annual audit and the sceptical auditor wants to check where all the £85 uniforms are or who has the £356 tablets you’ve capitalised in the books it’s quick and easy for him to do so? A decent asset record or register will immediately tell them what member of staff has what and if the asset has moved between staff members and when, a display similar to a type of action history for each asset.
Assets controlled by staff should be mentioned in the Terms & Conditions
On top of the fixed asset listing you should also have at least a generous paragraph within your employees contracts or terms and conditions. This lists out their responsibilities with regard to the assets (e.g company mobile phone has to be on during work hours or uniform must be worn) as well as what happens in the event of damage or loss. This means that there are no misunderstandings once the employee accepts and takes control of the asset. A suitable software program would also allow you to instantly view who has what asset and when it was issued to them, by asset type or staff member.
7 things you need to know about your company’s assets:
- How much they cost
- When you purchased them
- Where the copy of the purchase invoice is kept
- Their useful life in terms of the company and that they are accounted for correctly
- For each asset which staff member has direct control over it
- The member of staff signing for them, knows his responsibility and consequence of loss
- That the paperwork is easily and quickly accessible
So never lose your business assets again!
PARiM is so much more than just a workforce management program. Its cloud based for starters so accessible almost wherever you are, whenever you like (WiFi/ Broadband allowing of course). It tracks assets from the moment you buy them and enter them on the system until the moment you write them off. The system automatically generates Sign Out and Return PDF forms for printing so that the moment the asset is under the control of an employee you have the signed form and can store a copy of that signed form on the system next to the asset and correct employee plus he can see the form too!
So there’s never an excuse to lose a company asset again!
The system also tracks any kind of absence (holidays or sickness), training or certificates, emergency contacts and uniform sizes, automatically communicates and produces timesheets and if you really want puts your company, your staff and clients all on the same page.