What is Manual Asset Tracking?

The process of recording and managing assets using manual methods is called manual asset tracking. Instead of utilizing automated asset management systems, these methods include paper-based systems or spreadsheets.

Deceiving Benefits of Manual Asset Tracking

  • Cost-effectiveness: If you think you can afford manual asset tracking because it’s free and doesn't require you to pay for additional software, think again. You’d spend much more in human hours and human errors. 
  • Simplicity: Recording assets manually may seem simpler than learning how to use software, but then you may end up having multiple versions which will add to the confusion. 

Despite these deceiving benefits, manual asset tracking comes with limitations. 

Disadvantages of Manual Asset Tracking

Relying on manual methods can present several disadvantages and challenges, including:

  1. Human error: Because manual asset tracking relies on individuals to accurately record and update asset information, it is prone to human error. That can lead to discrepancies and inaccuracies in asset records.
  2. Time-consuming: As assets should be physically located, identified, and recorded, manual asset tracking requires significant time (and effort as well).  So, this process can be time-consuming, especially when plenty of assets should be tracked.
  3. Inefficient data management: The use of spreadsheets or paper-based systems to record asset information can result in inefficient data management. That’s challenging to search, sort, and analyze asset data. 
  4. Lack of real-time visibility: Limited real-time visibility into asset location and status is the next disadvantage. With automated tracking systems, businesses may be able to quickly locate assets or identify their current condition. 
  5. Increased risk of theft or loss: With accurate and timely information on asset whereabouts, businesses may be able to identify missing assets or detect unauthorized access. That leads to financial losses and compromises the security of assets.
  6. Compliance and audit challenges: Without a centralized and automated system, it’s pretty challenging to provide accurate and up-to-date asset records during audits or regulatory inspections.

So, aside from being time-consuming and prone to human error, the manual recording and updating of asset information is labor-intensive as well as lack real-time visibility, which makes it difficult to track assets in real-time or identify potential issues promptly

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