FAQ


What account code and/or category code should I use when purchasing equipment?

See Financial Operations Equipment page for a list of the account codes and purchasing category codes. 

Why is there equipment not on my inventory report even though the item’s value is over $5,000?

If the equipment is new, it may not have been processed or added to the M-Pathways Asset Management system yet. Generally, it takes one to two months after an item has been paid for it to appear.

If the equipment is not new, it may have been purchased using a non-equipment account code. If the item does meet the equipment definition, contact Property Control with as much detail as possible, (purchase order number, project/grant) so they can determine why the item is not on the inventory.

Why is there an item in my inventory valued under $5,000?

This cost for this item was probably shared between several departments, and if so, will show up on several inventories. The listed value is what your department paid on this particular item. In rare instances, the cost was not shared and the item may be in your inventory because of the conversion of the previous Capital Asset System. All items from that system were put in the equipment category (EQUIP). Financial Operations balances the general ledger to make sure equipment totals are correct.

Why are there are multiple lines on my inventory report with the same information for the same item?

This cost for this item was probably shared between several project/grants, and if so, will show up several times in your equipment inventory report. To get the correct value of the equipment, add these lines together.

Our unit has items that I know was sent to Property Disposition. Why are they still appearing on my equipment inventory report?

Financial Operations removes items from the Asset Management system based on the information provided on the Declaration of Surplus (DOS) form and your department’s equipment inventory. If the Declaration of Surplus did not contain the tag number or serial number, or you did not provide this information during your department’s equipment inventory, equipment will not be removed from the M-Pathways Asset Management system. Please see the Property Control webpage for inventory instructions and the Property Disposition webpage for instructions on how to fill out the DOS form. Access both webpages by going to the Property & Space Management website.

If the equipment is still in your inventory after the departmental review because no tag was recorded on a Declaration of Surplus, notify Property Control.  

Supporting documentation will always be required. Examples are: transfer letters/memos, Declaration of Surplus forms, a statement or memo from your dean, chair, or higher administrative authority for equipment that was destroyed or any equipment that you are not able to locate. Electronic copies of these documents should be returned with the inventory.

Where should I send the corrected equipment inventory report, and who should I contact if I have questions?

Property Control can answer any questions regarding your inventory at property.control.inventory@umich.edu and you can also send your corrected equipment inventory report to this email as well.

Can I have access to the M-Pathways Asset Management system to make the corrections myself?

Yes. Property Control offers classes on the M-Pathways Asset Management system. This course is required, along with completing the OARS process. Once you are granted access you can update all non-financial information about equipment within your department (equipment location, contacts, serial numbers). Contact Property Control for details.

Is it really important that I verify the rooms in which my equipment is located?

Absolutely. The depreciation on the equipment is expensed to the room and the activity identified for that room. If equipment is not identified to the appropriate room, the U-M Office of Cost Reimbursement will not have accurate information for calculation and negotiation of the federal Facilities and Administrative Rate Proposal (often called the “Indirect Cost Proposal”). Cost Reimbursement can be contacted by phone at (734) 647-3843 or by email at cost.reimbursement.office@umich.edu.

It is especially important to assign valid and accurate room numbers to scientific equipment, since it tends to be more expensive than other types of equipment. Annual depreciation for these items tends to be higher than for general-purpose equipment. Because these items tend to be housed in research areas, it is important to U-M to have the proper room number recorded in the inventory.

What are the numbers starting with 7 & 8 and the letters S & U mean and why can't I find them on the equipment?

When an item is not feasible to tag due to size, accessibility, or some other factor (radioactive, submerged, etc.) it is assigned a Non Tag Number.  Identifiers starting with “7 or U” are assigned for U-M funded equipment that cannot be tagged. Identifiers starting with “8 or S” are assigned to sponsor funded equipment that cannot be tagged. You are still required to track these items as you would any other item in your inventory.

Where can I find a list of building names so I can update the building number in my inventory?

Download a Listing of Active Buildings and Structures on the Space Analysis website.

What about fully depreciated equipment, do I still need to account for that?

Yes.  If the equipment is still being used, you are required to keep track of it.  If it is no longer being used, download and fill out the Declaration of Surplus form, and send it to Property Disposition for action. Instructions for completing the form can be found on the first tab.

How do I handle Affiliate-Related Assets?

The information in the link below establishes guidelines on how to handle assets owned by affiliates of U-M as well as assets owned by U-M but housed in affiliate space.  There are several possible scenarios surrounding these types of assets to be addressed. This information can be found on the Financial Operations Equipment page under the “How to Handle Affiliate-Related Assets” section.

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