Capital Equipment Inventory

Northwestern University maintains its equipment inventory, within the NU Financials asset management module, to track capital equipment.  Equipment records within the asset management module contain a variety of data including asset description, model number, serial number, custodian, location, funding source and financial information.

Capital Equipment Procedures and Guidelines Presentation

Inventory Verification

Capital equipment records are verified at least once every two years to ensure that the inventory records within the asset management system are accurate.  Capital equipment inventory verification specifically includes verifying the existence, tag number, model number, serial number, building name and room number, custodian name and asset description. 

Verification Frequency

Physical inventory is performed on a biennial basis, (Chicago campus in the even-numbered fiscal years and the Evanston campus in the odd-numbered fiscal years).  If a unit has capital equipment purchased two fiscal years or more prior, that has not been verified in the prior or current fiscal year, they will be required by Financial Operations to perform capital equipment inventory verification for such equipment in the current fiscal year regardless of inventory cycle. 

Property Accountant Verification Responsibilities

The Property Accountant manages the capital equipment inventory verification process by notifying units of inventory cycle due date, monitoring the progression of inventorying by  units, gathering the unit certified inventory sheets, sampling the results for accuracy, and updating inventory records in the asset management module.

Capital Equipment Unit Representatives Verification Responsibilities

It is the responsibility of the capital equipment unit representative to determine and execute a method of capital equipment inventory verification that works best for their unit, provide required updates to Financial Operations and certify that they have done so with their signature.  Additionally, unit representatives are responsible for facilitating the physical observation of capital equipment inventory by a Financial Operations representative when required.