US Aviation Group (USAG) has selected Real Asset Management’s (RAM) fixed asset accounting software to better manage the depreciation of its 2,000+ assets across three sites. The new software will replace its largely manual based processes which had become not only onerous to maintain, but lacked the financial reporting capability required.
As a Federal Aviation Administration approved CFR Part 141 flight academy, USAG is a leading provider of ab-initio flight training services to students around the world. With 240 staff employed across its three North Texas campuses, it trains over 400 cadets annually from ‘zero time’ to Commercial pilot. The organization prides itself on being one of the top choices for aviation education, providing the highest quality of flight instruction and training possible.
USAG will use RAM’s fixed asset accounting software to centrally record and track all financial information relating to its $21.5M asset base, consisting of such items as fixed and rotor wing aircraft, flight simulators, leasehold improvements, furniture, and computer equipment. Justin Sykes, Assistant CFO at USAG comments, “We had previously been using a combination of spreadsheets and another fixed asset program to manage depreciable assets and generate reports, however, the software did not allow for units-of-activity depreciation, a key requirement for USAG, which depreciates certain aircraft components over their hour-limited lives.”
Sykes continues, “Being able to manage our complex depreciation requirements within one system going forward will massively simplify the process and enable us to confidently provide our auditors with accurate financial data.”
Keen to set in place a more structured approach to managing its assets and to benefit from improved time and cost efficiencies, USAG went in search of a specialist solution and quickly realized that RAM’s proven asset accounting software ticked all boxes. Sykes comments, “RAM’s system was the most user friendly and feature rich, that was coded with the correct accounting ‘logic’, including a full understanding of our different depreciation methods.”
Another key factor in USAG’s decision to select the software was its flexibility to add custom fields to track insurance and property tax values on assets, while also providing the ability to link related assets with parent/child dependencies. Its excellent reporting capabilities and facility to create custom reports further sealed the deal, in particular, being able to report net book value and total insured value by airframe.
“We anticipate to save approximately 2-3 hours of our assistant controller’s time each month by shelving our cumbersome spreadsheet-based system,” comments Sykes. He continues, “However, we believe the greatest benefit will be realized at year-end when we have to generate a fixed asset rollover complete with detailed addition/disposal reports. This process previously took days, which we now expect to complete within a few hours.”
Sykes concludes, “I am very impressed so far with the software and level of expertise and professionalism demonstrated by our on-boarding specialist and look forward to getting up and running with the system to improve efficiencies and productivity across the organization.”