AAA was hired by one of the three largest Telecom operator of India for conducting its Fixed asset verification and physical verification audit of it Cell sites across India. The project consisted verification of cell sites assets at more than 1,25,000 locations across 22 circles across India over a period of 3 years.
 
AAA started execution with Gujarat circle with approx. 7700 tower locations. The exercise consisted verification of various equipments such as BTS, 2G/3G/4G antennas, MMU cards, TRX, microwave equipment and other passive equipments at own sites. To carry out such a mammoth task, AAA deployed an auditor and field operative in each of the 33 districts of Gujarat state. Metro locations like Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara and Rajkot had far greater density of sites and accordingly multiple teams were deployed in these areas. Also given the size of the state, to increase operational efficiency, we divided the state into 3 areas of Saurashtra region, Surat region (with all districts south of Vadodara) and Ahmedabad region (with the entire North and east districts of the state, upwards of Vadodara). A regional manager was deputed at each of the given areas to oversee the work. Also to be noted is the region of Kutch (Kachchh), which is not only the largest district in Gujarat state but also the largest district in India and comprised low density and vast territory of cell sites.
 
The outcome of above mentioned operational distribution was such, that we covered the physical verification of the entire state in 3 months from the date the Telecom operator company handed over its Fixed Asset Register to us. Such short time lines can be better appreciated if one considers the prior time taken by other firms to carry out similar activity, which was around 7-11 months of Physical verification exercise. This led us to massive cost savings at our end and a delighted client.
 
Simultaneously we started with the reconciliation part of the assignment. Here we accept that the exercise was much larger than we first envisioned. The FAR of the client for 7700 sites comprised of more than 5,50,000 rows and the tough part was that there was very little standardization on how the individual sites were broken down in the FAR. What resulted was that each sites was unique and normal tools of excel and data mining and sorting couldn't be used. We deployed a team at our Delhi headquarters and they worked on the data for more than 3 months after the entire physical verification exercise was over. After more than 7 iterations of the complete reco exercise, because of the changing client requirements of how the data should be presented, we finally were able to close down the reco by giving clients the entries to be passed in their register regarding write off of assets as well as capitalizing the costs. Final report followed which comprised of similar details and synopsis of the entire exercise, and recommendations as to how to go about maintaining the FAR in future and the internal controls to be implemented.
 
With this we covered the entire circle of Gujarat in record time. Time to move on to the next circle...
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