Westwood Academy selects RAM's Asset Accounting and Barcode Tracking Solution to adhere latest DFE guidelines
- Westwood Academy enlists state-of-the-art software from Real Asset Management to manage over £100,000 of fixed assets -
21st May 2012: Coventry-based Westwood Academy has contracted Real Asset Management (RAM) to manage over £100,000 worth of fixed assets. The purchase of Asset4000 and Track4000 will provide Westwood Academy with a central asset register for IT equipment and assets valued at £1,000 and above. The newly formed central asset register will not only enable the Academy to be compliant with the latest guidance from the Department for Education (DfE), but will also allow visibility of the assets within each department, ensuring the Academy maximises its use of assets and avoids unnecessary purchases.
Since adopting Academy status in 2011, Westwood has been looking to invest in a specialist system to provide compliant year-end results. Sheena Hodgson, Finance Director comments, “Part of being an Academy involves complying with the regulations set out in the Academies’ financial handbook headed up by the DfE, so we knew it was vital to invest in a provider who fully understood our industry and its associated needs. Prior to adopting Academy status we identified that holding all of our assets, regardless of value, on our equipment register which was integrated into our finance system, would not be a sufficient method to continue using. Our equipment register consists of every asset within the school, making it a complex task to deselect irrelevant assets to comply with the DfE guidelines. We therefore decided to invest in a system that wouldn’t be overly onerous on our time, whilst providing compliant reports.”
Sheena continues, “The new RAM system meets all of our requirements. Asset4000 enables us to easily depreciate our assets and comply with the guidelines outlined in the financials handbook. We have a close relationship with other schools within the area and when it came to partnering with RAM we thought it was vital to get their feedback too. RAM initially hosted a web demo for us and two neighbouring schools - it is key to us that other schools in the area are aware of the systems we use and from a personal point of view it is great to get feedback from other organisations. It was reassuring to see the breadth of customers RAM has in a variety of sectors and knowing that it fully understands our legal obligations meant we could trust them implicitly.”
In addition to Asset4000, Westwood Academy has also purchased Track4000 which can actively track the location of assets. Sheena adds, “Having the ability to track our assets using a barcode system is imperative. We have a number of assets in a variety of locations around the school, such as the computers in different classrooms, audio visual equipment and other material used as aids in education. Through utilising the scanning system, the Asset4000 software can acknowledge when and if we relocate certain assets.”
Sheena concludes, “RAM understands the scope of our business perfectly and takes an active interest in our business needs. To date, the training we have received has been excellent and moving forward we expect the RAM solution to drive real efficiency and productivity improvements in terms of the overall management of our asset base.”