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4 Reasons Your Homegrown Inventory Management System Will Fail

Published by Emily Frazier at August 15, 2017 | Categories: Infographic

You’ve put a lot of time and effort into your homegrown inventory management system. You built it because your district didn’t find existing software that met your unique needs. However, while the advantages of a custom-designed system can be alluring at first, the risks and costs over time exceed the initial benefits.

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Think You Know What IT Asset Management is? Think Again.

Published by Kelly Jones at April 11, 2017 | Categories: IT Asset Management

Understanding the fundamentals of IT Asset Management starts first with defining what it's not. Many districts have various tools in place designed to address different areas of asset management. But, are those tools providing your district with the support it needs to make better, more informed decisions? Let's learn about what effective ITAM really entails.

 

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5 Tips to Protect Your Inventory Management Program from the Summer Slide

Published by Jessica Zaleski at July 7, 2016 | Categories: Instructional Materials, IT Asset Management

Researchers have coined a term called the “summer slide” that describes the tendency for students to lose the achievement gains they made during the year if they don’t continue to stay engaged in stimulating educational activity. And it can happen to your inventory management program too if you don’t keep up your positive momentum throughout the season. Here are five tips to prevent your district from experiencing the “summer slide”.

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The Dangers of a Homegrown Inventory Management System at Your School District

Published by Jessica Zaleski at May 23, 2016 | Categories: Instructional Materials, IT Asset Management

You’ve put a lot of time and effort into your homegrown inventory management system. You built it because your district didn’t find existing software that met your unique needs. However, while the advantages of a completely custom system can be significant, the risks and costs over time outweigh the benefits.

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Measuring Inventory Management Effectiveness: 5 Metrics You Need to Track

Published by Jessica Zaleski at May 10, 2016 | Categories: Instructional Materials, IT Asset Management

When managing an asset inventory program, districts have a litany of data points from which to make strategic decisions to optimize people and processes. All this information can sometimes cause paralysis at your district and stall your program. How do you know which data to track to get the most out of your inventory management program?

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What Your District Needs to Know About Property Insurance

Published by Jessica Zaleski at April 25, 2016 | Categories: IT Asset Management

Your district is full of valuables within the walls of each building, millions of dollars’ worth of assets and materials. So if a disaster strikes, knowing exactly what you have could save your district a lot of money.

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EDGAR: What You Need to Know

Published by Jessica Zaleski at March 3, 2016 | Categories: IT Asset Management

There are a lot of rules to remember when it comes to EDGAR (Education Department General Administrative Regulations), and you particularly care about the how this impacts inventory and technology. With that in mind, we’ve put together some information to ensure your district is ahead of the game when it comes to EDGAR.

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Is Your District Ready for These 2016 Education Trends?

Published by Jessica Zaleski at January 26, 2016 | Categories: 1:1 Initiatives, IT Asset Management

In 2015, the mobile phone reigned again as the technology that’s been changing education, and it looks like 2016 will see the continuation of that trend.

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6 Inventory System Integration Trends You Need to Know About - Part Three: Procurement Systems

Published by Jessica Zaleski at December 17, 2015 | Categories: Instructional Materials, IT Asset Management, Quick Tips

Welcome to part three of our six part series on inventory system integration trends, where we will discuss how your procurement system and inventory management system can complement each other and save your district time, effort, and money.

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Education Code Requirements 101: California Code Section 35168

Published by Jessica Zaleski at October 8, 2015 | Categories: IT Asset Management

Staying up-to-date on every education code can be a hefty task—and staying compliant can be even more challenging. With that in mind, we’ll be interpreting important education codes that apply to your inventory management strategies and supplying the information you need to meet the requirements. This week, we’ll review California’s Education Code Section 35168.

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How to Assemble a Super Inventory Management Team [WORKSHEET]

Published by Jessica Zaleski at August 31, 2015 | Categories: IT Asset Management

Your software solution is only as effective as your internal implementation plan for your district to fully benefit from the technology. Setting the stage for success starts with ensuring new policies and procedures to achieve your future goals become a part of your district’s culture. One of the most important parts of this process is assigning roles and responsibilities to employees in your district who contribute to inventory control.

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6 Inventory System Integration Trends You Need to Know About - Part Two: Systems Management Software

Published by Jessica Zaleski at August 18, 2015 | Categories: IT Asset Management

In part two of our five part series on inventory system integration trends, we will discuss ways your systems management and inventory management software can be valuable complements to each other by helping reduce manual data entry and increase information transparency of laptops, tablets, desktops, and smartphones.

Others systems we’ll be addressing in our series include purchasing, fixed asset, newtork management, help desk, and cash management.  Check back to our blog for future installments of the series.

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5 Inventory Management Implementation Tips Straight From Tyler ISD’s Instructional Technology Specialist

Published by Jessica Zaleski at June 2, 2015 | Categories: IT Asset Management, Quick Tips

We’ve enlisted Tyler ISD’s Instructional Technology Specialist Robin Salars to give her insight into how districts should approach inventory management system implementation. Read on as Robin shares the top five tips she learned while assisting with Tyler ISD’s transition from tracking inventory through multiple spreadsheets to using a centralized inventory management system.

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6 Inventory System Integration Trends You Need to Know About - Part One: Help Desk

Published by Jessica Zaleski at May 6, 2015 | Categories: IT Asset Management, Quick Tips

It’s not uncommon for us to discuss with school districts the differences between a help desk system and an inventory management system. A lot of districts are struggling to use their help desk tool to perform inventory control tasks, but they fall short when it comes to recording purchase history, tracking life cycle details, and offering audit capabilities, to name a few critical inventory needs for budgeting, planning, and daily management.

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Quick Guide to E-Rate 2.0 Compliance for Schools

Published by Jessica Zaleski at March 24, 2015 | Categories: IT Asset Management

E-Rate 2.0 is here, and there are some important changes that might help you and your district provide broadband connectivity to your students, and increase the reach of digital learning in your classrooms.

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Why We Now Love School Inventory Management (And You Can, Too!)

Published by Jessica Zaleski at February 27, 2015 | Categories: 1:1 Initiatives, IT Asset Management

Our friend Leonard Chance has been an asset manager for over ten years. He started managing assets while in the Marine Corps and now he is the Technology Asset Manager for Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District. Here is a blog post that he wrote about his district’s experience upgrading their outdated inventory management system in order to take control of 200,000 assets.

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5 Best Practices We’ve Learned From District Textbook Coordinators

Published by Jessica Zaleski at February 19, 2015 | Categories: Instructional Materials

We recently had the pleasure of joining a group of our clients for a user group meeting in Virginia. There was so much valuable information shared, that we couldn’t resist compiling some of the key takeaways and sharing them with you.

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Houston ISD’s “Power Up” Initiative Aims to Make Sure Every Student Has Access to Technology

Published by Jessica Zaleski at February 9, 2015 | Categories: 1:1 Initiatives

Houston Independent School District, one of the largest school districts in the country, has recently rolled out a new initiative to ensure that every school, student, and teacher has access to technology.

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Are You Prepared? School Districts to Invest More in 1:1 and Instructional Materials in 2015

Published by Jessica Zaleski at February 4, 2015 | Categories: 1:1 Initiatives, Instructional Materials, IT Asset Management

Even though 2014 is over, looking back on the year can give us some insight about what’s in store for U.S school districts in 2015. MDR’s state of the K-12 Market 2014 report, conducted by EdNET’s research team, found that when it comes to 2015 education trends, technology is in.

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How Your Ideas Become a Part of Our Software in 5 Steps

Published by Jessica Zaleski at January 28, 2015 | Categories: Inside Hayes, IT Asset Management

New features and usability enhancements are added to our products as the result of suggestions from district and school level staff who perform these important inventory tasks every day. Here's how we do it.

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Don’t Let This Be You! The Case for a Centralized Inventory Program

Published by Megan White at January 16, 2015

We often hear of school districts going through unsuccessful inventory audits where purchased assets are unaccounted for and policies intended to control assets are nonexistent. With separate processes and a lack of oversight, things can quickly get out of hand. Your school closets could end up with boxes of unopened laptops or iPads that your students and teachers need in their hands, which is exactly what just happened at New York City schools.

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MDM vs. Physical Asset Management: What’s the difference, and do I need both?

Published by Megan White at October 20, 2014 | Categories: 1:1 Initiatives, IT Asset Management

If you’re a district administrator or technology director, it’s likely that your school has recently increased the amount of mobile technology in your classrooms. It’s also likely that you’re anticipating and preparing for the addition of even more devices in the next several years. And undoubtedly, the challenge of tracking and managing those devices in a secure and efficient way is at the forefront of any instructional technology conversation.

These technological additions to your classrooms are one of the most important investments your district will make, so it’s important to ensure that it’s protected and managed correctly. So you do some research and purchase a mobile device management (MDM) system. All set, right? Wrong.

You think your investment is protected with MDM software alone; this simply isn’t the case. Read on to learn the differences between MDM systems and physical asset inventory management systems, and why it’s important to consider them both as you safeguard your district’s investment....

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Psych 101: Updating your District Asset Inventory Practices

Published by Anna Maxin at November 22, 2013 | Categories: IT Asset Management

Many districts are feeling the pain of outdated asset management processes and procedures, utilizing practices put in place before the days of highly mobile, low cost technology devices now considered necessary to our school and work days. These instructional changes can be an opportunity to address inventory problems that have been frustrating staff for years. It goes without saying that being good stewards of district asset investments takes some resources but the biggest overlooked challenge is often psychological...

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Recorded Webinar: How 5 Districts are Solving Critical Asset Inventory Challenges

Published by Anna Maxin at September 19, 2013 | Categories: IT Asset Management, Webinars

Date: Thursday, September 19, 2013
Time: 9:00 AM PDT/12:00 PM EDT

It’s a fact - there is more costly “stuff” circulating around your school buildings than there was 10 years ago. Assets are being purchased without you knowing about it and issued to people without standard practices – How do school and department inventory spreadsheets and district financial asset systems keep up?

Without adopting new inventory control processes your district will suffer from over spending, needless losses, and disparate data records.

See how 5 of your school district peers are overcoming critical asset challenges that affect initiative effectiveness and staff satisfaction in the presentation slides and video below

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Rethink Your Technology Budgeting Practices for Today’s High-Tech Classroom

Published by Anna Maxin at August 26, 2013 | Categories: Budgeting

The perception of technology in the classroom has evolved from being an unproven cost to a learning enabler, prompting large increases in IT hardware investments in classrooms across the country.  Learning now takes place in a blended environment, utilizing both physical and virtual materials daily.  Unfortunately, while we’ve had a pedagogical shift of how technology should be incorporated in the classroom, many operational practices have been overlooked, not enabling the efficient acquisition and management for high-tech infrastructure and learning devices.

It is important to build awareness and re-align budgeting and reporting practices to build the case for the purchase of more technology items and infrastructure.   The following operational best practices should be worked into your plan to achieve your strategic educational goals...

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5 Questions to Evaluate Your District’s Inventory Management Capabilities

Published by Anna Maxin at August 9, 2013 | Categories: Instructional Materials, IT Asset Management

Transferring, assigning, auditing and budgeting for instructional initiatives is a district-wide, all building, all department challenge.  Think of a typical school day. Assets are moving from room to room, person to person, and even building to building – How do school and department inventory spreadsheets and district financial asset systems keep up? 

Districts across the country are turning to new processes to manage their items to reduce the inefficiencies and costs of inventory operations. Many are finding the answer to their problems by implementing a perpetual inventory management methodology supported by building-level inventory automation software.

Not sure how perpetual inventory management would benefit your district? Below are five questions to help evaluate your district’s current operational capabilities...

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Auditing School Technology Assets – 3 V’s to Avoid Headaches

Published by Anna Maxin at July 10, 2013 | Categories: IT Asset Management

As a district administrator, you know how difficult it is to keep accurate track of the technology assets being purchased and assigned to schools.  Ideally, your department is able to track inventory information to demonstrate what you have, where it is located, and how old it is.

However, you know that your asset spreadsheet is only as accurate as the last time your staff updated it. Who knows if all the items are still in the same location and in a usable condition for the start of school?  You scramble your staff to scour your buildings to find the required items using this out-of-date data, taking them away from their core responsibilities. The initial results indicate there was inventory newly identified you didn't know about that had to be tagged and a high percentage of inventory that couldn't be found.

The scenario above is all too common for K-12 school districts. Knowing precisely what you have and where inventory is being utilized will allow for more reliable reporting.  It’s time to think of your technology asset information in a different way.  Here are three simple questions to consider to reduce the headaches induced by bad data...

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Why Building Level Asset Management is the Perfect Complement to Your Fixed Asset System

Published by Anna Maxin at May 17, 2013 | Categories: IT Asset Management

Fixed asset system. Building level asset management system. What’s the difference? Why would a school district ever need both?

A fixed asset system is primarily a financial tool designed to manage capital assets above a set monetary threshold to fulfill district accounting needs. A building level asset management system, on the other hand, is the campus counterpart to your fixed asset system, focused on perpetual inventory tracking and increased accountability, driven by the need to reconcile the fixed asset system’s data as well as non-capitalized assets critical to instructional initiatives. 

Fixed asset systems are commonplace among school districts, however school principals don’t benefit from these systems because they are not designed to track the real-time assignment and movement of assets across the district. Building level asset systems provide data integration options with the district’s student management system and human resources software to manage the assignment of devices to students and staff. Additionally, building level asset complements the needs of financial asset managers with real-time mobile inventory audit functionality and asset usage reports broken down by site to perpetually keep your asset information up to date.

Here are a few examples of how your building level asset management system and your fixed asset system can work together for your district.

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Can Better Building Level Asset Management Solve Your Problems?

Published by Anna Maxin at April 3, 2013 | Categories: IT Asset Management

Effectively managing assets critical to instructional and administrative operations is a growing challenge in K-12 schools districts since so many of these assets are no longer “fixed”. Tracking and auditing assets is particularly challenging because of the rapid adoption of technology in the classroom, limited personnel resources, and the short life-cycles of many IT assets.   

Luckily, a modern school district asset management system is designed to address common challenges like these. Take a look at how a building level asset management tool can address some of the problems that you might be facing.

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