Mobile Asset Management

Following on from my previous Enterprise Asset blog, I am now covering the ARCHIBUS Mobile Asset Management Application. We can now look at two aspects of the mobile framework application: Asset Registration, and Asset Surveys.


Manage Asset & Equipment Surveys for Mobile Users


This is relevant if your site uses the Asset & Equipment Survey Mobile App to perform field audits using mobile devices. As the Facility Manager, the need to manage aspects of the survey is available using the Manage Asset & Equipment Surveys console. This is available from Web Central using the Manage Asset & Equipment Surveys task.

 

 

Create a new survey and set the fields to display on the mobile device


Use the Create New Survey button to define a new survey. With this action, you define a survey, specify the types of items you want to audit and specify the fields of data to track in this survey. The system creates the survey and assigns this set of audit items to this survey.


Conducting Equipment Surveys


Although field auditors performing an asset and equipment survey will find the interface intuitive and will not need documentation on using the mobile app, it is helpful for Facility Managers to understand the complete process, as described below.


From the Mobile Application List select the Asset and Equipment Survey Module.

 

Using the list on the mobile device, the auditors travel throughout the facility and compare the assets they find with what is listed on the mobile device. For each item in the list, they tap it to pull up its record. They then note any discrepancies between the record and the item they see in the field by updating the record on the mobile device.

 

 

 

If the physical asset ...

The auditor ...

matches the information displayed on the mobile device

taps the Complete button in the upper right corner of the form

has different properties than what is listed on the mobile device

enters the correct value. For example, they can update the Equipment Status field to show that an item needs repair

does not exist in the field, but is listed on the mobile device

updates the Equipment Status field to Missing.

Additionally, if the auditor knows what happened to the item, they can set the status to Salvaged, Out of Service, or Sold.

If the mobile device displays the Marked for Deletion? field, the user can complete this field so that the inventory record can be deleted. See the discussion about missing items.

exists in the field but is not listed on the device

creates a record for it. They will choose the "+" icon in the upper right corner to access a form for entering the new record. They will need to assign an identifying value for this item by completing Equipment Code.

If the item has a barcode tag on it, they can tap the barcode icon next to Equipment Code and scan the barcode tag with their mobile device. See Using Bar Codes in Mobile Apps.

requires further text notation

can enter comments in the Asset Survey Comments field. To have the system automatically complete this field with the survey name and date, tap the field.

requires notation in the floor plan drawing. For example, you want to indicate on the drawing the area of the room to which an equipment item should be moved.

can add notes about it directly to the floor plan drawing by using the redlining feature.

 

Asset & Equipment Registration Mobile App


This function is available within WEB Central which I covered in a previous blog.


Registering assets into the ARCHIBUS inventory system -- either as you receive them or registering those that already exist at your site -- is important for ensuring that the assets are properly accounted for. With the ARCHIBUS mobile solution, you can go out in the field and inventory your assets. Sites will find this app convenient for registering assets right as you receive them on the loading dock.


With the Asset & Equipment Registration app, you can:

 

  • quickly search for existing assets to check if they are already in the inventory. If they are not, use the mobile app to add them to the inventory
  • use the bulk update features to efficiently enter multiple similar assets at one time using the automatic numbering feature or by entering their identifying values
  • enter individual items
  • use a barcode system for efficient and accurate data entry
  • add into the electronic inventory equipment that exists on site but is not yet registered in the inventory. While the app's primary use is to add new equipment being received, you can use it to enter existing items into inventory.
 

Like WEB Central Asset Registration, the Mobile application provides functions to create assets singular and multiple of the same type.


 

If you are entering a new asset, search to make sure that the asset does not already exist. If the asset has a barcode tag, you can tap the barcode icon on the mobile app and capture the barcode. The mobile app converts the barcode value to an alphanumeric value and displays it in the search box.

If you want to run any previous searches that you have already entered, click the icon next to the barcode. The system presents a list of your previous searches from which you can select a search. See Searching, Filtering, and Sorting.


If the system discovers that a record of this value already exists, it presents a message to inform you.


If the system does not find a record with this value, you can proceed to the steps to add new assets.

 

Entering individual assets


2. Click Add an Asset and complete the following form:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. When completing Equipment Code, you can;

 

  •  type in a value
  • scans the barcode on the item. (See the above discussion on barcodes.)
  •  Click the Next Item button, located next to the barcode button.

- The system queries the server to find the highest number in inventory and displays the next sequential value directly in the Equipment Code field. For example, if the highest number of the inventory on the server is UPS-1001, tap this option and the system completes the Equipment Code with UPS-1002.
- You can edit the generated value, for example, edit the generated value of UPS-1002 to UPS-1003.

- If you want to use Get the Last Number to find a number beginning with a specific letter or number, enter it here.

- You can add a prefix and get the next available value. For example, enter "A" here and tap the button to get the next available value and the system will find the highest existing equipment code beginning with "A", such as "AHU-198" and will display in the Equipment Code the next available value which is "AHU-199". Enter "1" and the system will find the highest existing equipment code beginning with "1", such as 15678 and will display in the equipment code the next available value which is 15679. If no match is found, then the next number is the prefix plus 000001.
- Since the command is querying the server, be sure that you have synced your work and uploaded any records created. If you have not synced, when the system queries the server, it will not include your very latest set of entries in its search.


4. When you are finished with completing fields, tap the Checkmark button in the upper right corner of the form.


5. The system returns you to the Asset Inventory List. You can use the + button to create another record, or complete and sync, as described below.


Entering multiple assets at once


Inventory managers and facility managers often receive many assets at once and need to enter them into the system. For example, they might receive a shipment of new PCs at the receiving dock and need to register them into the system. You can set up common data for more efficient data entry; additionally, if you are not scanning bar code tags, you can set up a numbering system.


1. On the Asset Inventory screen, tap Add Multiple Assets.
2. The system brings you to the Common Asset Data screen so that you can define common data, and optionally a numbering system.

 

Set Inventory Method to specify how you want to create multiple assets: 

 

Set Inventory Method to this ...

... and the system ...

 

Bar Code Scanning

After you complete the common data, moves you to the Add Equipment form. Complete Equipment Code by typing a value or scanning the barcode of the physical item. When through with the form, tap Next to process the record and enter the next value. When you have completed all records, tap Done and the system displays the new records in the Asset Inventory List form.

Incremental Values

generates new records based on the start number and numbering pattern you define. The system displays the generated records in the Asset Inventory List form.

 

Step 1: Set the number of items that you will enter.


Whether you are defining number patterns or entering value manually or by scanning bar codes, you must set Total Count to indicate the number of items you expect to enter with this information.


Step 2: Define common data.


 

 

On the Common Asset Data screen, complete as many fields as applicable for the set of assets you are going to add. For example, in the below image, all of the assets to be registered are of the same type (A-PC), will be used by the same department, and will be located on the same floor. When you create the records, the system will complete these fields with the common values. When you deliver each PC to its employee, you can enter the specific values, such as the room where the item will be located and the employee who will use it.


Enter as many of the common fields as appropriate for your business operations. For example, if you are entering a variety of items at one time to be used by several departments but located on the same floor, you can enter just the Site, Building, and Floor fields. You can always edit your generated records to supply more information.

 

 

 

Step 3: Set a numbering pattern (if not scanning or manually entering Equipment Codes)


1. To activate the numbering pattern fields, set Inventory Method to Incremented Codes.
2. Complete the other fields as follows:


Field Value


Tap the check mark and the system generates the records and displays them in the Asset Inventory List. You can now edit the records or complete and sync, as described below.


Step 4: Create records by scanning barcodes or entering values.


Note: If you set a numbering pattern, the system immediately generates the records when you tap the check mark on the Common Asset Data form. You do not complete this step.


If you are entering values or scanning barcodes, the system presents the Add Equipment screen, pre-filled with the values you set on the Common Asset Data screen. You can edit these pre-filled values if desired.


Complete Equipment Code either by typing a value or scanning the barcode on the item. Complete other fields as desired, and choose Next to process this record and enter the information for the next record.

Note that the bottom of the screen keeps a count of the number of records you have created so far. For example, in the above screen, the user sets Total Count to 56 on the Common Asset Data screen and is now completing the first record of this set. If you find that you actually have fewer items to enter than you indicated in Total Count, you can tap the Cancel button to cancel the process. Tapping Cancel cancels the numbering process; the records that you created so far in the session are saved and are not affected by cancelling.


When through, the system moves you to the Asset Inventory screen, which lists the new records. You can now edit the records or complete and sync, as described below.


Editing the asset records you created


Whether you registered your assets by

  •  entering an individual item
  •  generating multiple records using a numbering pattern
  •  created multiple records by entering values or scanning
 
 


The system brings you to the Asset Inventory List, where you will see all records created since the last sync. From here, you can edit any record created in this session by tapping on it and completing the Edit Equipment form.


Note that the app does not include a button for deleting records. If you create a record and later decide that you do not need it, you must upload it to the server when you sync. You can then delete the record using Web Central. To help you remember to delete the record in Web Central, you can enter a comment before uploading.

 

 

 

Reviewing the assets that you entered


At any time while working with the app, you can review the list of records that you created and make changes if necessary. You will especially want to do this before syncing, which uploads your new records to the server.


You review assets from the Asset Inventory List. There are a few ways to access this screen:

  •  Return to the starting screen, the Asset Inventory screen. Tap Review New Assets. 
  •  After you create an individual record, the app displays this screen.
  •  After you create multiple assets, the app displays this screen.
 

To review your assets:


1. Access the Asset Inventory List screen, which displays a list of new assets created since the last time that you synced.
2. Tap a record to review or edits its properties. The app presents the Edit Asset form. You can change values as needed, or delete the record.
3. To delete all records created in this session, tap the X button on the Asset Inventory List screen.


Completing and syncing


When you have finished entering, reviewing, and optionally editing entered items, you can complete and sync.

From the Asset Inventory List:

 

  •  Choose the Complete button and the system:
- uploads the records to the Equipment table on the server and removes from the device the records that were saved into Equipment table without issues.
  •  Choose the Sync button and the system:

- saves changes into an intermediary table (the eq_sync table) without modifying the Equipment table and removes the records from the device.

 


I hope this blog has been useful. It has certainly been one of the longer ones in recent MASS Media editions. I look forward to sharing more with you in future editions.


If you would like any more information regarding this blogs topic, please don't hesitate in contacting the MASS Technical Services Team. We are available on 0118 977 8560 or email us at news@mass-plc.com to find out more.

 

 Martin Matt 



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