BLOGS  >  NOVEMBER 27, 2023

How Asset Management Can Reduce Costs, Boost Efficiency, and Simplify Contract Management: Solving Common Problems Throughout the Whole School


The Biggest Asks in Your District: Are These Familiar?
To better understand how to support educators, we asked this question: “What are the biggest asks in your district?”

The three most common responses were: 

  1. To reduce costs
  2. To increase efficiency with tools my district owns 
  3. To reduce the number of vendors and contracts when possible

If any (or all!) of these needs sound familiar, keep reading to learn how asset management can help. 

Reducing Costs with Asset Management

Asset management tools can help reduce costs by making it easy for district administrators to track, manage, and report on resources, especially those not already supported through the district’s library management software. Non-library assets can be anything used in your district, including, but not limited to, technology resources, textbooks, curriculum materials, and special education resources. 

The Power of Data and Reporting in Asset Management

Data and reporting available through asset management tools can also help save your district money. A capable system will provide accountability, security, and reporting of any asset you choose to include, providing insight into all your resources, including location, status, history, and other valuable information. 

An accurate and trustworthy reporting functionality enables users to generate a variety of reports on usage, condition, and other resource metrics. Whether you need to see which textbooks are most in demand, which technology equipment needs maintenance, or how many resources each department is using, a quality reporting tool will make it easy to get the data you need.

Also, don’t underestimate time-savers within asset management systems, like fee management. Incorporating fee management makes it easy for districts to offset costs by assessing fees to a group of students. Before choosing a system, ensure this feature works across programs and with any type of resource.

Learn how implementing fee management made life easier for everyone in one district - "celebratory-cartwheels-in-the-hallway" easier. 

Essential Elements Needed in an Asset Management Solution to Unleash Cost Savings: 

  • Scalability. Look for software that bases pricing on your unique site rather than the number of resources or users. This spreads the cost of your asset management solution over various departments in your school community, ultimately saving you money.
  • Reporting. Reporting tools that integrate seamlessly power smart asset management decisions that benefit your entire school community. When evaluating software, ask, “Does it have an audit functionality?” Knowing this is important because this feature lets you easily track changes to your inventory and resource data, giving you peace of mind by ensuring accuracy. 
  • No more spreadsheets. Districts that deploy asset management software avoid the headaches involved in traditional asset management methods, making your educators’ jobs easier and more productive, ultimately enhancing the student experience. Staff can easily find asset history, including an item’s maintenance schedules, user manuals, depreciation, correct disposal history, and help ticketing, enabling optimal distribution and use of these assets. 
  • Efficiency. Asset management software enables you to use enrollment data to avoid ordering too many resources, ensuring every student can access the resources they need while you stay within budget. This increases the effectiveness of your investments while freeing up staff time for other crucial responsibilities.

Asset Management’s Role in Improved Efficiency

Asset management can play a critical role in making it easy to manage all your resources in one place. With a reliable system, you can stop tracking inventory on spreadsheets. Instead, you can easily assign resources to specific individuals or departments, check items in and out, and set up alerts for low inventory levels or overdue items. This means you always know where your resources are and can ensure that you have the resources you need when you need them.

A modern resource management system should also mean full-service support for your 1:1 device initiative. Look for a tool that enables you to keep device data in sync with your mobile device management (MDM) solution. You can speed up asset imports and 1:1 device deployment with the MDM integration, take a physical inventory of your assets, and run recurring audits. By keeping all systems current, the MDM integration keeps your district informed of changes to inventory status, such as lost or stolen items, keeping the entire school community on the same page when it comes to your resources. Plus, users can deploy digital signature agreements to speed up 1:1 device rollouts and general resource distribution. Resource Manager, for example, integrates with Google Workspace or Jamf Pro. 

You should also be able to maintain security and peace of mind with detailed permission settings within the resource management system to ensure that only authorized individuals have access to your inventory data. 

More ways asset management software boosts efficiency:

  • Inventory functionality. These tools manage lost or damaged assets. If something is lost or damaged, you can easily mark it as such in the system, helping you keep track of your inventory and identify any issues that need to be addressed. Overall, an inventory functionality helps you optimize your asset allocation, ensuring your students and staff have access to the resources they need to succeed. 
  • Search. Identify asset management software with sophisticated search features that will make it easy to quickly find the assets you need and keep track of who has checked them out. 
  • Comprehensive data. Providing you with everything you need to know in one place sounds too good to be true, but asset management software can record an item’s entire history while tracking maintenance schedules, user manuals, depreciation, correct disposal history, and help ticketing. Even after an asset has been deleted or removed, these historical notes and records are still maintained and reportable within the school management system. 
  • Forecasting classroom needs. By integrating with class schedules, you can use enrollment data to avoid overordering, ensuring every student can access the resources they need while you stay within budget.
  • Accountability. Software that offers inventory management at both the district and school levels ensures accountability across the board. Staff can create and oversee inventories of everything from technology devices to textbooks, avoiding the headaches of disorganized inventory tracking. Maintain security and peace of mind with detailed permission settings within the school management system to ensure that only authorized individuals can access your inventory data. Asset management software enables you to track resources from check-in to check-out. Additionally, digital signature agreements in your distribution and collection workflows boost accountability. It’s easy for parents and guardians to submit signatures from their computer or mobile device ahead of time or during the checkout phase, and all forms are stored in an organized fashion. 

All these advantages benefit districts and sites by saving time and money while helping you become more efficient. 

Why Choose a Single-Vendor Solution?

Logging on across multiple sites and systems can create a host of issues, including problems with vendor communication, tech support woes, data that doesn’t fully integrate, and questions or doubts about how many of each asset you have and where they are. Fortunately, there is a better way to track and manage the valuable resources your students and staff depend on.  

School districts that subscribe to a suite of products experience improved efficiency for students and staff. Students can work within the same system as staff, providing staff with increased visibility for district resources and library materials. 

A single-vendor solution means one place to log on, one place to call for technical support, and one place to talk to your representatives. By making things easier for you and your team, we hope to free up your time and staff resources to focus on student outcomes. Listen to this Massachusetts-based school district's Assistant Director of Tech Services explain further. 

Take Your Asset Management to the Next Level with Follett

Asset management affects the whole school. To reduce costs, increase efficiency, and simplify your vendors and contracts, consider an asset management system that can help you do all three. 

More than 25,000 schools trust Follett Destiny® Resource Manager to track, distribute, and collect curriculum and technology resources in one location. Follett also provides professional development that enables staff to master their inventory quickly. Our experts can teach you how to use the system from top to bottom. You can access webinars, blogs, tutorials, and more that will help you unleash the full power of Destiny or schedule individualized training. Perhaps best of all, Follett offers consulting to help you at each stage of your resource management journey. 

If your district or school is struggling with asset management but is unsure where to start, Follett can help lead the way. Learn more about Destiny Resource Manager, and how it can solve for your district’s frustrations. 

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