Physical Inventory of Capital Assets

The Arizona Board of Regents and Northern Arizona University (the University) Fixed Asset policy requires the University to conduct an annual physical inventory of all tagged assets. Tagged assets consist of capital items (those assets that have an original acquisition value that is equal to or greater than the current capital threshold at the time of purchase. The current capital threshold is now $5,000.00), all computers, I-Pads, non-capital items of a sensitive nature with an acquisition cost of less than $5,000.00, and leased property.

Property Administration oversees and coordinates the physical inventory procedure for the university. Each department is responsible for its own physical inventory and works in conjunction with Property Administration for completion of the physical inventory count. On completion the inventory results should be sent to Property Administration.

Physical inventory consists of the sighting of the assets, verifying their location and description, reporting any changes/discrepancies, and reconciling the property with the University's fixed asset system.  Property Administration will spot check 15% of each department's annual physical inventory to verify the information supplied. Any location changes noted on the inventory report by the department for any asset will be used to update the department's asset listing. The asset listing is also updated any time using a PCA form noting changes in location or ownership.

Each department will assign a custodial administrator to oversee the accurate and timely completion of the physical inventory. If a custodial administrator leaves the department a new custodial administrator must be assigned the task. The department will notify Property Administration of the new custodial administrator with their name, phone number, and e-mail address.

Inventory procedures

Departments are responsible for completing annual inventories. Property Administration shall notify the departmental inventory liaison by email regarding the start date of the physical inventory. Inventory shall be complete no later than thirty (30) days after the start date.

Upon notification, instructions will be provided and reports can be accessed on Business Objects. The department will then physically inventory each piece of equipment by checking the report, verifying the information, and correcting and updating missing information.

How to run an inventory report in Business Objects:

  • Login to Business Objects
  • Open the Public Folders folder
  • Open the Advantage-Financial folder
  • Open the Purchasing folder
  • Open the Asset Inventory report
  • Enter DEPT and Unit (in CAPS)
  • Run query

Note: Liaisons that are responsible for multiple inventories will need to run an inventory report for each Dept/Unit.

To save and work on the report click "Document" on the Business Object tool bar.

  • Select Save to my computer as
  • Select Excel
  • It is easier to work in the Raw Data Tab version of the Excel spreadsheet.

In the Excel inventory report, insert a column on the left hand side of the Fixed Asset column and title it Asset Status. This will be the working column.        

  • Physically locate all assets on the inventory report.
  • Using a red pen put a check mark in the Asset Status column for all physically located assets.
  • If the item is missing put an M in the Asset Status column. 
  • If there are any discrepancies in the building or room number draw a single red line through the incorrect data and write the correct information next to it. (If there is an asset that says, “TO BE PROVIDED” or “TBP” in the building/room number, locate and provide the information.
  • Any tagged asset that does not appear on the inventory report must be added on a separate sheet of paper and submitted with the completed inventory. Include all details available i.e. asset number, manufacturer, model, serial number, etc. or any other details to identify the item.
  • Make a note if any property control tags are missing or illegible; Property Administration will replace them.
  • Any items found that should be tagged, but are not, i.e. computers or assets costing $5,000 or more must be noted on the inventory report. Include physical location, description and serial number.
  • Return the completed inventory report to Property Administration within 30 days of the starting date. The report must be signed and dated by both the department liaison and their supervisor.

Upon receipt of the completed inventory report, Property Administration will update the assets that were found.  For all missing assets, whether it is the first year or second year missing, the department will complete a PCA form including all required signatures (Dean/Director and the Provost/Vice President). Each department must list each missing asset on a PCA form for two consecutive years in order for the asset to be removed from the active inventory report.  

Refer to policy PUR 701 and the Property Control web page for additional information.