Asset System

System Components

Portable bar code terminal - Allows collection of asset and location information by scanning of bar codes. Information is stored in on board memory and then downloaded to a computer when the portable terminal is placed in the communication cradle.

Asset bar code labels - Robust labels with strong adhesive are attached to all assets and to a fixed location such as a door frame in a room. The labels are usually a hard wearing plastic material and are printed using a thermal printer. Labels can be supplied pre-printed or a thermal printer can be supplied with blank label stock.

Application software - Software interfaces automatically with the portable terminal when it is placed in the communication cradle. The data from the portable terminal is loaded onto the PC where it is automatically imported into an asset database.

Communication cradle - The communication cradle is connected to the computer and allows data to be transferred from the portable terminal to the computer. The cradle is connected to a spare port such as a serial port or USB port. Additionally the rechargeable batteries on the portable terminal are charged up while the terminal is in the cradle

How it Works

Setting up the system Asset labels are applied to all assets that are to be tracked. The asset labels have a bar coded number which is unique for each label. As the labels are applied for the first time, the number is recorder with a description of the item and the location where the item is situated. Additionally a label is applied in to a fixed surface in the location, such as a door frame or wall. This bar coded number is used to identify the location. Once the labels have been assigned to assets and locations and the numbers have been recorded, the data can be entered into the system database. This initial set up phase is the most time consuming part but it is the equivalent of a manual asset audit. Once this has been completed the system is configured ready for audits using the portable bar code terminal.

Using the portable terminal Once all the labels have been applied and recorded in the database, completing an asset audit is as simple walking to a location and scanning the location bar code, then scanning the bar code on each asset in the location. After all locations have been completed the portable terminal can be placed in the communication cradle and the data downloaded automatically. This is considerably shorter and more accurate than having to manually write down the asset numbers of items in a location and then key them into the system for a report.

Using the software The data is automatically loaded into the asset database once the portable terminal is placed in the cradle. Once in the database, reports can be run that show the locations of items, show lists of missing items, and show lists of items that have been moved to other locations. For assets such as computers and other depreciable equipment, a depreciation schedule can be set up and traced using the software.

System Variations

  • Portable terminal functionality - Most commonly the portable terminal simply collects the data and all processing and reassigning of assets is done form the PC. However the portable terminal can be set up to upload the location information from the PC and then be used to reassign assets in the field.
  • Software - Often an existing asset database exists. In this case the portable terminal can be set up to interface to this existing database. Often the thermal printer can be interfaced to this database and existing asset number used to create bar codes, thus no re-keying of data is required.
  • Label printing - Asset labels can be pre-printed using Existco's label printing service or, for large applications where labels will be required more regularly, a thermal printer can be supplied for on demand printing at the client's site.

Ask a Question


Existco's Christmas and new years closure information.