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Inventory Instructions for University Employees


Disposal of Assets Form
Gift Acceptance Form
Notice of Relocation of Assets Form
Personal Property Form
Stolen Assets Form

Inventory Procedure:

In accordance with Minnesota State regulations and Minnesota State Board policies, Southwest Minnesota State University is required to establish and maintain records and enact procedures to track and account for all university fixed assets. The SMSU Inventory Clerk is responsible for maintaining the campus records and facilitating the procedures, but requires the cooperation of all university personnel to ensure accuracy of inventory records. Each department is accountable for all equipment assigned to their department.

Minnesota State has directed that fixed assets shall include items that have a value of $10,000 and over; a life expectancy of more than two years and maintain their identity while in use. In addition, Minnesota State requires that all computers and weapons, regardless of price, age and current value, must be kept on inventory. The Inventory Clerk shall exercise his/her discretion in adding other items below $10,000 and are determined to be “sensitive” assets.

Physical Inventory:

Physical inventory shall be taken on a rotational basis with 100% being completed every two years, or more often if deemed necessary by the University or the Inventory Clerk. (The exception is dormitory rooms, which shall be inventoried whenever required by the Board Office.) “Spot checks” may be ordered by the Board Office or performed by the Inventory Clerk as often as deemed necessary. A department that has unsatisfactory physical inventory accuracy will be more subject to spot checks until acceptable accuracy is achieved.

During physical inventory, Inventory Office personnel visit every building and room, recording asset numbers, brief equipment descriptions, serial and model numbers and locations across the entire campus. The new date of the physical inventory is entered in the database for each asset number found and the location is changed if necessary. After all asset numbers found are updated in the computer inventory system, a computer printout is run for each department. Each department will then be contacted to find or account for any assets that were not found and updated by Inventory.

Adding New Assets to Inventory:

When fixed asset purchases arrive to SMSU, Inventory will apply an asset number sticker to the asset. Serial and model numbers and location will be documented and entered into the Minnesota State database.

Donated Assets:

The Inventory Clerk must be notified of assets donated to the University to determine whether or not they should be assigned an asset number and added to inventory.

Recording Betterments to Existing Fixed Assets:

When creating a purchase order for $500 or more to upgrade or improve an existing fixed asset, please notify Inventory of the asset number of the existing asset being upgraded/improved and the purchase order number of the upgrade so that the price of the upgrade/betterment can be added to the existing asset. This information could also be put in the memo section of the purchase order.

Relocation of Fixed Assets on Campus:

If you are moving a fixed asset to a new campus location or transferring ownership to another department on campus, complete and return the Notice of Relocation form so the record for that asset can be updated.

Disposal of Assets:

Usable assets should be first made available to other departments on campus. Contact the Inventory to advertise any surplus assets you want to make available to the rest of the university. If there is no longer any use for an asset on campus, it must be disposed according to state law and the guidelines set forth by the Department of Administration and the Minnesota State Board. Assets that are no longer usable shall be recycled to the full extent possible. All equipment with electronic circuit boards and all video display terminals and televisions are considered hazardous waste and must be disposed of properly.

If you wish to dispose of a fixed asset, you must complete and return a  Request for Disposal form. The asset number must be removed from the both the asset itself and the inventory database system.

Missing or Stolen Assets:

When assets are determined to be missing and possibly stolen, University Public Safety should be notified as soon as possible. An officer will come to get all pertinent information. Next, complete the Stolen Asset form and return it to the Inventory Clerk notifying them of the missing or stolen assets. Include any copies a Security Report or Police Report. The Inventory Clerk will determine if it is necessary to complete a report form for missing or stolen assets for filing with the department of Administration and the Minnesota State Board Office.

Equipment Check Out System:

Areas that make a practice of checking out equipment must keep a formal checkout record. The record must include the signature of the individual checking out the item, the asset number, the serial number, and the expected date for the items to be returned with a follow-up on that date.


If you have any questions please contact George Bass, Director of Business Services at 507-537-7470 or

For more information see also- Minnesota State Procedure 7.3.6 Capital Assets 

Last Modified: 5/9/23 12:22 PM | Website Feedback