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Why IT Asset Management Important?

Vikas Sharma

Vikas Sharma

Last updated 11/10/2019


Why IT Asset Management Important?

“ITAM”, “Information Technology Asset Management”

 

ITAM - Information Technology Asset Managementis set of business practices that facilitate the planning and management of full lifecycle of all IT assets, by aligning financial, contractual and inventory areas. This supports the strategic decision making for the IT environment.

IT assets in above definition refers to all aspects of Technologies that includes software, hardware, People, information, Contracts, Services, etc. used in a business.

 

IT Asset Lifecycle

it-asset-lifecycle

IT Asset Lifecycle has 6 Stages

 

  • 1. Strategy/plan
    • Clear understanding of organisation’s vision
    • Evaluation of Existing Assets
    • Mapping the usage of assets
    • Establish and verify business requirements

 

  • 2. Request
    • Create request for IT Asset
    • Approval of Request
    • Assignment of Request to the procurement team
    •  
  • 3. Procure
    • Create purchase orders
    • Pre-defined PO workflow
    • Link to cost centres for budgets
    • PO approvals
    • Post-purchase, adding to the assets inventory

 

  • 4. Receive
    • Deploy the assets and change state from inventory to in-use
    • Discover the assets in the network for software and hardware inventory
    • Allocate software to a hardware asset
    • Add relationship maps

 

  • 5. Manage
    • Schedule scans and get audit history
    • Asset Tagging ownership tracking
    • Software compliance and license management
    • Asset depreciation calculations
    • Maintain contracts for assets
    • Software license agreements are linked to the software
    • Total cost of ownership of an asset

 

  • 6. Retire
    • Change the state of an asset to expired/disposed
    • All the software allocated to the disposed asset will get un-allocated

 

ITAM- 4 key asset areas

ITAM-4-key-areas

 

  •  1. Hardware Asset Management (HAM)
    • Management of the physical components of computers, mobile devices and networks
    • HAM is tightly connected to SAM as the two asset types cannot be separated

 

  •  2. Software Asset Management (SAM)
    • Managing the complete lifecycle of every software asset, involving cost control, documentation, licensing, redistribution, maintenance etc.
    • SAM is the most crucial as it involves greatest financial and legal risk in terms of vendor license conditions and complex compliance regulations.

 

  •  3. SEAM - Cloud and Services Asset Management (SEAM)
    • Service and Cloud refers to services delivered from a cloud service provider’s devices, and includes online data storage, backup solutions, web-based services, hosted applications, database processing etc.
    • SEAM is the management of the multiple platforms across physical, virtual and cloud environments

 

  •  4. People & Information Asset Management (PINAM)
    • The management of People and Information refers to data security, access policies and best practices in regard to knowledge and information sharing.
    • A key component is increasing the business value of data and information for the right people at the right time in order to ensure an agile and safe workflow and knowledge sharing.

 

 

What is Industry Revolution 4.0?

We are at present evidencing the beginning of Industrial Revolution 4.0. Previous Industrial revolutions as shown in the below diagram were

  • 1.0 marked use of Water & Steam
  • 2.0 used Electric Power
  • 3.0 used Electronics and IT
  • 4.0 use of Computers and Automation

industry-revolution

Industrial Revolution 4.0 encompasses the use of various technologies like Internet Of Things (IOT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), Quantum Computing, Biotech, Nanotechnology, Robotics, autonomous vehicles, 3-D printing. Industrial Revolution 4.0 is also referred to as Digital Transformation. Digital Transformation is mainly technology transformation.

 

itam-and-industry 4.0

As technology are growing exponentially and changing the entire Business outlook on daily basis. 

It has become really very difficult to keep abreast the pace of transformation and cut throat competition in the market. ITAM enables organisations to proactively plan and effectively manage the entire lifecycle of all IT Assets there by also proactively managing the costs associated with IT Assets and Services.

 

Benefits of IT Asset Management

 

There are many benefits of ITAMas listed in above diagram. In particular, asset management can help:

 

Accuracy

Strong IT Asset Management makes it easier to tell when items are lost or stolen and deal with the underlying causesand reduce vulnerabilities. Recovery efforts can also be initiated promptly.

 

Accurate Forecasting

ITAM helps organisation in maintaining accurate acquisition history that helps in identifying the patterns of demand. As per this demand accurate forecasting would help organisation acquire required assets as and when required. This can provide a basis for predicting IT needs and budgets.

 

Tracking

IT Asset Management has a complete list what the business owns and leases, including where assets are located, how they are used, and when changes were last made. Such a detailed information about IT hardware, software, consumables, etc., provides the basis for the other benefits.

Operational Efficiency

IT Asset management enables a full understanding of IT assets, their capabilities, lifecycle, upgrade expectations, maintenance requirements. And it further helps in answering questions like “What can be leveraged before more spending is considered? What can be eliminated to save money? And thereby helps in realizing operational efficiency.

 

Maintenance cost reduction

ITAM maintains the entire history of entire lifecycle of IT Assets. It keeps a track of all activities required by different assets at different stages of the lifecycle, so asset management can help ensure corporate requirements are met cost-effectively.

 

Financial reporting

ITAM keeps the track of entire IT Asset costs. It enable accurate financial reporting thereby raising accurate Invoices for IT Asset Management.

 

Meeting compliance

Some assets will eventually be redeployed, potentially moving from mission-critical application to a remote office or other purposes. Others will be sold or scrapped. At all these stages we have to abide by the Law of the Land (compliance). ITAM helps organization in not defaulting any compliance mandates, thereby avoiding legal penalization.

 

Where is ITAM in Organization Picture ?

 

To ensure the ITAM workflow is effective, it is crucial to understand the responsibilities and key roles in the ITAM ecosystem, both internally and externally. ITAM ecosystem is shown as below

 

itam-in-organization-level

IT Asset Management ecosystem is a complex set of relationships between parties taking part in IT Asset Management actions.A successful ITAM program traverses the organisation across departments and functions, involving everyone at some level e.g.:

  • Management
  • Legal
  • Finance
  • Procurement
  • End-users
  • IT operation

 

 

Key ITAM roles in the market

  • ITAM Executive
  • IT Asset Manager
  • Hardware Asset Manager
  • Software Asset Manager
  • Lead Analyst -SW Asset Management
  • IT Asset Management Specialist
  • IT Asset Management Administrator
  • IT Asset Coordinator
  • Executive - Inventory & Asset Management
  • IT Manager - Warehouse Network Infrastructure

 

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About Author

Vikas is an Accredited SIAM, ITIL, PRINCE2 Agile, DevOps, ITAM Trainer with more than 17 years of industry experience currently working with NovelVista as Principal Consultant.

 
 

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