From: Karen Conneely, Group commercial manager, Real Asset Management
Sir – With over 1,200 housing providers in the UK and over two-thirds of those managing fewer than 2,000 homes, smaller organisations are facing a problem. They have the same requirements when it comes to SORP and component accounting as a larger organisation, but they don’t have the budgets or resources to effectively manage them.
Many housing providers with fewer than 2,000 homes might have just one finance person responsible for accounting for their entire asset base on various disparate spreadsheets, whereas a much larger organisation may have dozens of people available to work on a system designed specifically for the task. The processes these smaller organisations undertake are extremely time-consuming and inefficient, but many believe they are unable to afford a dedicated system to help them increase efficiency and flexibility.
With spreadsheets widely acknowledged as time-consuming, difficult to audit, and lacking in robustness, housing providers can gain tangible benefits by using a best-of-breed solution that can simplify statutory compliance and provide value-added analysis of their assets. In the light of the changing requirements across the sector and the need to monitor and record several components within each home, which can lead to tens of thousands of separate records, an effective component accounting system is essential to avoid inaccuracy and wasted resources.
It is now more important than ever for smaller housing providers to review their current asset accounting processes and ensure they are getting the most from their current methods. With the compliance requirements only set to increase, it is vital that housing providers of all sizes implement systems that will help them improve business efficiency at a price-point they can afford.