- The challenge
Inadequate, complex and error-prone spreadsheet system. Complex public sector accounting requirements, including resource accounting and application of Price Indices issued by National Statistics Office
- The solution
Existing spreadsheet data collated and rationalised by Client Services consultants, then uploaded into asset accounting system. Indexation function used for automatic revaluation according to index values published by NSO
Sportscotland is the national agency dedicated to promoting sporting opportunities for all Scots at all levels, whatever their interest and ability. It distributes approximately £40.6m from the Scottish Executive (£12.8m) and the National Lottery Fund (£27.8m) to help deliver a wide range of sports facilities and sports development programmes. Sportscotland uses Assetware Technology’s asset management solution for control of its £12.8m asset base in its six centres throughout Scotland.
Sportscotland’s assets consist of land and buildings, fixtures and fittings, IT and other office equipment and motor vehicles. There are three major categories of assets, further broken down into a number of sub-categories. Financial control and reporting is required for asset categories, subcategories and individual assets, as well as for each of the six centres and for the organisation as a whole.
Sportscotland had formerly been using a complex system of individual and interlinked spreadsheets for all aspects of its asset management. The spreadsheets held references to other documentation, such as invoices, for historic and supplementary information. There was no way of collating all information centrally for reporting across asset categories and sub-categories in all the six centres, and the many intricate formulae were becoming progressively harder to check.
Assetware’s system was selected following a comprehensive review of asset management systems on the marketplace, including detailed evaluation and demonstrations from other leading suppliers. Public sector accounting requirements are complex, and include issues such as capital charging and valuations, calculation of cost and depreciation reversal values, and resource accounting. Price indices issued by the National Statistics Office must be applied to asset categories, and individual assets may be revalued at any time.
“Assetware’s system stood out because it has all the functionality we need, yet is totally intuitive and easy to use.” says sportscotland’s Director of Finance Iain Robertson.
Because of their auditors’ requirements, sportscotland were working to a very tight deadline, and Assetware’s Client
Services Division was called in to help with system set-up.
Assetware’s consultants collated all the existing spreadsheets and other documentation, then rationalised and formatted the data. All financial, descriptive and historical data was then uploaded into Assetware’s system, using the system’s import facility.
In order to ensure a smooth transition from the old to the new system, a cut-off date was agreed, and the data that was uploaded related to transactions up to that date. The period was then closed, and the figures from Assetware’s system were agreed to the financial accounts as of the same cut-off date. This showed up any discrepancies on the spreadsheets, and the reconciliation verified the link between the asset management and the financial accounting system. Assetware’s consultants completed the system set-up well within the deadline, and with minimum disruption to sportscotland’s day-to-day work.
Sportscotland is using the indexation function of Assetware’s system, and a link has been set up to allow input of the percentage index values published annually by the National Statistics Office. Assetware’s system stores these values and applies them on the appropriate date to the relevant asset categories. The system also allows for individual revaluation of assets such as land and buildings. All depreciation calculation and forecasting takes place automatically, while a full depreciation history is maintained by the system.
Both statutory and management reports are produced on a regular and ad hoc basis for the organisation as a whole, as well as for each of the six centres and for asset categories and sub-categories. Sportscotland uses the filter and view facilities of Assetware’s system to report on any combination of centre and asset category, thus maximising control over their asset base.
Comments Robertson “We now have all the information relating to our asset base in one place, and we can report at any level of detail. Assetware’s system is very flexible, and allows us to decide which items of information we hold for each asset, then add further information at any time. Apart from the excellence of the software, the thing that impressed us most was that Assetware showed an in-depth understanding of our requirements, and have helped us to set up the system to meet a very tight deadline.”
Sportscotland is planning on extending the system, and will be putting in place an organisation-wide asset tracking system, using Assetware’s hand-held data capture units to monitor the location, usage and condition of bar-coded assets. Assetware Technology products and services will play a key role supporting sportscotland in its future development.