Stocktake principles


The Australian National University Act 1991 requires the Council to ensure that adequate control is maintained over the assets of, or in the control of the University. The ESP Assets Management System (ESP) is a key control over the University's assets. An accurate record of assets is essential so that ESP can be relied upon, to meet statutory requirements, management information needs and the University's external reporting obligations.

The main objective of the physical stocktake is to ensure the integrity of ESP by:

  • ensuring that all plant and equipment items held are recorded in ESP, and
  • verifying that all items recorded have been physically located and are prima facie still functional and not subject to impairment.

The physical inventory of ANU assets is carried out by the manual input of information to the system.

How often should asset stocktakes be performed

Council, at its meeting of 8 October 1982, approved all items recorded on ESP were to be physically located and identified at least once every two years.

It is suggested that stocktakes be performed progressively during the year. This will ensure that the follow up action required as a result of the stocktakes, as indicated in the procedures below, is maintained at a manageable level.

Performing the physical stocktake

To perform the stocktake, it is necessary to run an Asset Listing Report from ESP. This gives you a worksheet for the stocktake so that all assets can be checked 'physically'. ANU will progressively introduce barcoding for physical inventory to replace these manual procedures. 

The allocation of location codes to items should be consistent, easily understood and kept up to date to facilitate stocktaking of items. Room numbers should be included where available as well as any other detail, which assists location identification.

Location codes should follow standard naming protocol as determined by Facilities and Services.

In the performance of the stocktake, where practicable, there should be at least two persons involved one of whom is independent of the area being counted. One officer is to verify that the item listed on the Asset Listing is in existence. When an item is found, the Asset Listing should be marked with an "F" alongside the item.

The persons performing an asset stocktake should be sufficiently technically competent to identify items and be aware of the stocktake procedures to be followed.

Where an item listed cannot be located following appropriate action to locate the item, the Asset Listing should be marked as 'Not Found'.

Where the location code indicates that the item listed is on loan to an officer, verification must be obtained from the officer that the item is still in existence and under that officer's control.

Where the location code indicates that the item listed is at a location other than the Acton site, the remote location must be contacted and verification by two officers that the item/s is/are still in existence must be obtained.

Stocktake Summary Report sheets should be obtained from SMR, F&BS, for completion.  This will include:

  1. A Plant & Equipment Stocktake Report; and
  2. A Report of Items Located But NOT ON Register; and
  3. A Report of Items On Register But NOT LOCATED; and
  4. A Report of Items On Register where value is IMPAIRED.

All exceptions must be actioned in some way, either by being located or otherwise disposed of, or by being added to the Register, in consultation with SMR, F&BS.

The condition of items should be observed and any unserviceable or obsolete items should be identified on the Report of Items On Register where value is IMPAIRED for appropriate action.