The Value of Barcode Asset Tracking
Your company is built on assets. They’re in everything you do, from the chair you sit in to the device you’re using to read this blog (unless you’re dedicating your free time to improving your business – in that case, good for you. We’re honored).
Because these assets are so vital to the everyday operations of your business, losing track of them can be detrimental. Vanishing paper clips are one thing, but imagine how costly misplaced furniture, technology, or vehicles become over time. It’s hard to improve your bottom line when you have a hole in your bucket. But with the right barcode asset tracking solution, you can easily manage these items and increase accountability across your team. Let’s dive into what exactly barcode asset tracking is and the benefits of it.
What is barcode asset tracking?
Barcode asset tracking is your ticket to plugging that hole in the bucket. It shows you what you have and where it is at all times and is one of the easiest, most cost-efficient ways to manage your fixed and IT assets.
But before we take an in-depth look at barcode asset tracking, let’s get back to the basics – a fixed asset is any long-term, tangible piece of property/equipment that is used to operate a company. Some examples include:
- Office supplies
- Industrial equipment
In turn, an IT asset refers to any of your organization’s technological hardware or software, such as:
- Laptops and desktop computers
- Servers and network infrastructure
- Software licenses and cloud agreements
Too many businesses fail to maintain a real-time recordkeeping system for these assets. As a result, they don’t know what assets they own, what condition those assets are in, or their location. When these assets are lost or stolen, ghost assets emerge, creating the perfect recipe for an auditing disaster. It’s a shame, considering how easy and affordable barcode asset tracking actually is.
It works by assigning a unique barcode to every asset. The ideal asset management software should allow you to create and scan these barcodes so you can access an item’s full record history, including details like:
- Assignment status
- Maintenance schedule and history
- Relevant attachments like photos, voice notes, videos, etc.
Benefits of tracking assets with barcodes
Now that you understand what barcode asset tracking is and how it works let’s look at its numerous benefits.
Faster data collection
With a quick barcode scan, you can capture vast amounts of information about an asset. This automates processes that rely on asset tracking (like auditing or inventory management), eliminating the need to waste time hunting down a single item in one of many spreadsheets.
Compared to the high return, barcode asset tracking is an affordable and effective solution for businesses of all sizes. Not to mention, streamlining your workflows with barcode asset tracking takes your employees much less time than manual efforts, saving you valuable resources.
Lower risk of errors and downtime
Since barcode asset tracking helps you quickly and consistently conduct inventory audits, you can easily stay on top of maintenance schedules or damaged items to reduce downtime. Plus, barcode asset tracking also severely reduces the risk of human error when it comes to manual asset entry. Manual entry has a 1 in 300 character error rate, whereas barcode tracking’s error rate is 1 in 36 trillion characters. Is there even a competition at that point?
More accurate data
By conducting asset management workflows with a single scan, barcode asset tracking makes it easy to keep your records up to date at all times. And with a mobile asset management app, you can even update your data on the go.
Barcode asset tracking vs. RFID
When it comes to asset tracking with barcodes, the actual barcode labels are self-adhesive. Stick them on, point your scanner or mobile device, and you’re all set. So, you may be wondering, how exactly do barcodes compare to RFID tags?
RFID asset tags use chips to track assets, making them a bit more technologically advanced. You can scan tags up to 15 meters away, even if they’re out of sight. RFID systems also read multiple labels at a time, while barcode scanners are limited to one barcode at a time. They contain more storage space (4 million characters vs. 2,000 characters) and are more durable than barcode labels.
On the flip side, RFID tags are more expensive and less universal. Barcode labels typically cost a few cents each, while RFID tags can cost between $1-30 each. While you can use barcodes anywhere, RFIDs tend to be more location dependent. Overall, barcode asset tracking tends to be a more cost-effective, easier-to-implement option than RFID tracking.
What to consider when selecting barcode asset tracking software
To reap the full benefits of barcodes, you first need to find the right asset tracking software. So, where exactly do you start?
First, consider a solution that doesn’t require you to purchase expensive barcode-scanning hardware on top of the software price. A platform that offers a mobile asset management app with built-in barcode technology is the best way to get the most value out of your investment. Not to mention, it makes it simple for everyone to update asset records from anywhere at any time. Ideally, software with built-in barcode technology should also allow you to create and print your own, once again saving you money on added supply costs.
Finally, make sure your chosen software offers robust mobile asset audit abilities. No matter what kind of items you’re tracking, being able to conduct regular audits of your inventory will help you maintain accurate asset data, increase accountability, and even forecast when items might need to be replaced.
Give barcode asset tracking a go with Asset Panda
It’s no secret that barcode asset tracking can increase accountability and time and cost savings for your organization. If you’re still wondering if one platform can really offer you all these benefits and capabilities, the answer is yes. The answer is Asset Panda.
With Asset Panda’s robust barcode asset tracking software, you can keep your records up to date in real-time with a single scan. When you can update your inventory from anywhere, anytime, you can truly increase productivity, accountability, and data accuracy.
If you’re ready to ditch manual asset tracking, Asset Panda is here to help. Request your demo today to get started.