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What Is IT Asset Management and Why Is It Important?

Published on 06 July 16

Asset management is a very important part of every company out there. A majority of companies use it to track, evaluate and collect data about all the existing company assets. This practice cuts costs of big companies because when a business grows, it is possible to lose a lot of money if there is no one appointed for asset management. Making a company efficient in every possible way is the best recipe for success, which makes asset management tremendously important.

As devices such as computers have conquered the whole world, numerous software and hardware solutions have become an integral part of companies around the world. This sort of development has created a subcategory of asset management called IT asset management(ITAM). For new companies and startups, this is the best way of tracking all the important information about the software and hardware products that a company owns. Let’s dig into the details about what IT asset management actually is.

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IT asset Management: What is

IT asset management allows an insight into the complete IT inventory within the company by answering the following questions:

● What are the systems and equipment that the company owns?

● Where are they currently located?

● Are they used and how are they used?

● What is the cost of these assets?

● When were they purchased and added to the inventory?

● What is their expiry date and do they have one at all?

● What is their level of importance in the process of conducting business?

Answering all these questions provides a perfect insight into all of the current IT assets, minimizing any type of the unnecessary expenses of a company. All of the companies in the world perform ITAM. However, it is also important to establish an efficient way in which this is all performed. Taking care of a small number of company assets is fairly easy, but as a company reaches a certain size, things can get out of hand.

Luckily as technology has greatly developed in a number of ways, there is a variety of software that can help you manage IT assets with great ease. These types of software solutions turn the process of ITAM into an easy task, with lower chances for error that usually come up. Now let’s move to different types of ITAM.
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Hardware ITAM

As the name suggests, ITAM in this case deals of tracking the number and location of all the company hardware assets. This includes, computers, smartphones, tablets, modems, cables and all other parts of the company’s computer networks and all the gadgets and electronic devices within a company. All of this makes it possible for company managers to have the correct information about all the tech assets of a company.

These data make it possible for business owners and managers to utilize all of the devices in the correct way, without losing any money in the whole process. Not only are the products tracked, but the documentation related to them as well. For example, there are devices that cost a lot of money to purchase and they are leased from another company. Hardware ITAM also includes data on when the device was leased, when the contract is going to end and what the costs of continuing the lease for additional time are.

Taking care of these little things is very important as unplanned costs can add up quickly, which can lead to a problem for the company to continue providing products or services. In order to make the whole machine work flawlessly, it is necessary to know everything about the smallest parts.
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Software ITAM

Even though software is not a physical product, it is still a company asset. And as software is almost always leased, the majority of software solutions require license fees, which are paid every year. This part of asset management focuses on when the payments are due, what is the current software version that is being used and how many licenses are owned at every moment.

Following this sort of data makes it possible to maximize profits from a certain software and avoiding any legal issues in case that license is not paid in time. Additionally, company managers can also follow how important every piece of software is for the profits of the company, which can influence the future decisions when a software license should be extended.

The fact that the financial efficiency is one of the key reasons why ITAM is necessary for any company, it goes without saying that it is also very important for the software part of the company, as licenses for software solutions are quite high sometimes.

The underlying IT Asset Management Methodology

The basic methodology of IT asset management is as follows – all of the collected data is centralized and accessible by the higher authorities within a company. This information repository contains all the data about the currently owned software and hardware of the company. This whole methodology consists of several different steps that need to be taken:

● Finding all the assets, making data and storing it – This is where it all begins, all of the software and hardware assets are discovered and all of the important information regarding them is placed into the centralized database and stored for future use.

● Tracking – At some point, one of these assets are going to be transferred to another location or stopped being used, be it software or hardware. For example, software can be moved from one PC to another, and if you have a single license, it is important to know where the software is installed. On the other hand, hardware is often moved from one place to another, as these devices can be quite expensive, it is essential to know their location at all times.

● Lifecycle management – All of the data acquired makes it possible to follow the lifecycle of all the software and hardware assets. There are always products with expiry date and pieces of equipment that need to be regularly changed, which makes this step of the methodology very important.

● Alerts and reports – This is where the aforementioned software solutions come in pretty handy. Setting up automatic alerts and reports can be very useful as it greatly reduces any chance of the whole team missing any sort of deadline. The software can warn you about the upcoming warranty expirations and lease expiration dates.

The combination of all these steps makes ITAM a necessary process that should be followed in all of the companies in the world. It is important to mention that utilizing a piece of software for this task is currently the most efficient way of keeping all the data correct and making the whole process semi-automated. Once you get the important files in the system, the alerts and notification will help you stay on top of all the necessary actions that have to be taken.

These are the most important reasons why ITAM is a valuable part of any company out there. As companies grow, there are often numerous losses, as it was thought that it impossible to track all the assets of the company. But, by following this methodology and utilizing a good software solution, no matter how big a company grows, the central database will always have the correct data that will save a lot of money and time for the whole company and its employees.

This blog is listed under IT Strategy & Management and Networks & IT Infrastructure Community

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