Any savvy modern business must realise the value of their IT assets – be that financial, technological or operational – and look to manage them effectively in order to succeed.
An effective IT asset management policy is one that is strategic, taking a short, medium and long term view of the ways to protect and upgrade the vital components of the business operation. In short, every organisation must know what IT resources it’s using, how well it uses them, how to protect those assets and what new software and hardware it might need next to consolidate or improve amid a fast-changing market.
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Here are five key ways you’ll benefit from a strategic approach…
Safety: This is at the heart of a strong IT asset management system. All software should be protected as robustly as possible and patches should be applied as soon as they are available – and in a way that is not too obtrusive to day-to-day operations – to ensure that you are benefitting from the most up-to-date safety for your assets. Failure to do so could leave you open to the threats posed by hackers.
Licenses: Businesses can waste a significant amount of money on software licenses if they are not careful. It’s important to manage this properly, with a regular audit of what is being used and how effective that use is. Companies such as 1E offer software that can provide such information and once you have this data to hand you’ll be able to make informed, strategic decisions that could save you money on unused licenses or ill-matched software.
Forward thinking: You need to keep up with the latest developments and assess what new technology might help your business – and ideally not after all of your rivals have signed up and raced ahead of you. Looking at the short-, medium- and long-term pictures will allow you to stay at the head of the game when it comes to the IT assets your business possesses, identifying the assets that need replacing – and their ideal replacement – before it becomes too late. No business can afford to become irrelevant, and strategic management is the trick to ensuring this does not happen.
Money: This forward thinking approach also has practical benefits when it comes to your bank balance. It’s important to highlight the hardware and software assets you need to invest in at the earliest opportunity so that you can factor these into your budget. A strategic outlook involves healthier finances and less chance of a nasty big bill coming from out of the blue.
Greener: The need to keep a lid on your bills and ensure your green credentials are strong should not be seen as entirely separate from the way you manage your IT. Strategic management of your IT should help you to identify poorly performing hardware that consumes copious amounts of power as well as unnecessary software that runs in the background, draining power and system performance. Using software that can ensure PCs boot up for updates at a specific time during an evening can save on energy, avoiding the need for terminals to be left on for long periods.
IT asset management borrows the same fundamental principles as the management of any other business assets. Taking a strong strategic approach should ensure you protect your IT just as you would your buildings and machinery – and upgrade and repair at the earliest opportunity to ensure problems do not develop.