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Getting Started With IT Asset Management

In our recent webinar with our partner CG4, we explored the best strategy to get started with IT Asset Management. You can view the recording of that webinar here.


Introduction

To maximize the value an organization can generate from its assets, the IT asset lifecycle must be proactively managed. Each organization may define unique stages of that lifecycle, but they generally include planning, procurement, deployment, maintenance, and retirement. A crucial part of IT asset management is applying processes across all lifecycle stages to understand the total cost of ownership. After this, you will be able to optimize the use of assets. Let us start with a few key points from our partner CG4 Asset Tracking:

  • Your time is valuable

  • Monitoring your tangible assets is vital to your business

  • You will save time and therefore money by better tracking your assets

  • Using barcode and/or RFID scanners will produce better efficiencies and accuracy


Why IT Asset Management and ​the CMDB are important

In our experience, highly mature organizations make the CMDB the center of the universe. When you leverage the CMDB, it will afford you a greater level of visibility of your assets including, how they are tied together, their history, and the many details that ultimately will help you make better decisions. When doing a technology refresh of older equipment, the efficiency and accuracy of your refreshed assets are better with accurate location information. Lastly, ​regularly scanning your assets helps mitigate the effort used to manage the correct number of software licenses and maintenance policies.


Why scanning can make a dramatic difference ​in your IT Asset Management efforts

You might be asking yourself, but why is IT Asset Management important? A centralized CMDB allows you to provide a single source of truth. In many organizations, assets get tracked in multiple locations by a multitude of people in different departments. No single entity manages the entire CMDB and no single tool collects and centralizes the information. Inaccuracy of your assets will lead to uninformed decisions. Another way to look at the benefits of ITAM is by improving utilization and waste elimination. You can save money by helping avoid unnecessary purchases and cutting or downsizing licensing and support costs. The increased control of your assets better enables compliance with security and legal policies while reducing risk to the entire organization. In other words, you can more frequently and in a more accurate manner complete audits and inventory of your assets within the CMDB. You can improve processes such as moves, adds, and changes, going beyond that scope, auto-discovery tools know exactly where the asset is, where it was last seen and who it was assigned to enabling productivity without compromising reliability. Scanning makes the effort to update assets simpler for your field technicians, so they will be more likely to do the desired updates while supporting ITSM practices and enabling other teams across the organization.


How to choose a scanning software to enhance ​your CMDB & Asset Management efforts

While deciding on an IT Asset Management software there are many areas to consider. You’ll know your organization is ready if you:

  • Are assessing your need to improve your approach to asset management

  • You want to save money

  • You’re relying on spreadsheets

  • It’s difficult to keep up with the pace of change in your company

  • Shadow IT is of growing concern

While browsing the many vendors, make sure to ask these questions:

  • Does your scanning software easily integrate to your ITSM/ESM, CMDB, or other back-end platforms (s)?​

  • Can the scanning software be configured in various ways to assist with processes that bring efficiency to the organization? While at the same time, appropriately updating CMDB records?​

  • Does your scanning software have the ability to scan both barcodes and RFID tags?​

  • Does the scanning software do everything in your asset life cycle management?​

We recommend CG4, you can visit their website here.


Extending Your Reach Across the Enterprise

An important part of IT asset management is applying processes across all lifecycle stages to understand the total cost of ownership and optimize the use of assets.​ Extending across the enterprise will help achieve future goals and enhance daily operation activity. Most companies tend to underestimate the ability and capability of asset management, but it has proven beneficial in every business industry.

This maximization is not limited to IT assets alone. These solutions could be extended to any assets that your organization wishes to track. Below, we listed a few examples of equipment you might've not considered:

  • Warehouse equipment​

  • Phones​

  • Headsets​

  • TVs​

  • Projection equipment​

  • Game Systems​

Gaining Buy-In from Upper-Management

You will need a strategy to use your ITAM software to its fullest extent. ITAM tools are platforms that need to be managed. Even before discussing your intended strategy, you need approval or buy-in from your management team. Collaboration is crucial to business success, and when promoting an organizational change, you need to provide better business outcomes. ITAM will potentially amplify certain change impacts but by creating business-level metrics and KPIs, we are certain your team will be on board. First, look at the bigger picture and the common challenges to various departments. Are you empowered to make the necessary changes, and does your team agree that this is an important problem that needs to be addressed? Second, ensure that your priority for this ITAM installment is important and your actions show that is the case. Below are a few key points to use in your business case:

  • Provide as much insight about ROI as possible, ask for examples from your preferred vendor

  • Prove that initial investment and total cost of ownership is not as much as they may think

  • Accounting for compliance and external audit requirements sharing how this change will reduce stress for management ​

  • Be clear about benefits​ to your department and cross-collaboration departments

  • Provide a predictive analysis on the percent of employee efficiencies ​and how those may increase

  • Provide a time per audit​/time per project breakdown with your current numbers and how those could improve

  • Ask your preferred vendor for examples of how your organization will reduce unnecessary purchases, software licenses, and ultimately property taxes (on unused equipment).

  • Reassure that you can keep assets and knowledge at your organization when employees switch organizations ​while gaining visibility on in-transit assets.

In conclusion, we believe that an effective and rich CMDB, managed with effective ITAM tools and practices has a significant impact on the organization’s efficiency, effectiveness, and decision-making. Leveraging the right set of tools and processes leads to better change management and better IT Service Management as a whole.


Contact us for more information at info@excaliburdata.com




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