Many clients we speak to dread IT Asset Management (ITAM) implementation. They are worried about the status quo of managing assets in their organization and think it would be an uphill task to bring them all into the new tool/platform. Some of the questions that we have constantly come across during ITAM discussions are:
- Our asset inventory is all in spreadsheets. Can we import all them to the new tool? Is it that simple?
- We have a partial ITAM implementation for some of our global offices but many don’t. That doesn’t mean we don’t manage our assets in those offices but you know…
- We have duplicate assets in our inventory
- We don’t have a formal SAM team in place. Someone maintains it somewhere but they are in this room.
- Our existing tool was purchased by our management few years back. We really have challenges using it for asset management and now you our management wants to use a new tool. We are really not sure how this is all going to work.
All valid questions, valid concerns. But you know what? ITAM implementation is a smooth journey if it is planned well. Here are some pointers to successfully drive an ITAM program in your organization.
Identify your stakeholders – They can be in Legal, Procurement, Finance or IT. You need clarity on requirements and that comes only from the right stakeholders.
Setting Expectations – Identify the mission, goals and objectives and help the stakeholders understand them. Set priorities and share what needs to be accomplished in the short-term vs the long term
Put First Things First – Yes, it’s one of the Seven Habits that Stephen Covey said. It applies to everything. In ITAM, there are things like cleansing data before moving it to the CMDB which needs to be done before anything else. You cannot dump everything from your spreadsheet to CMDB. It will cost you heavily later.
Control Access Rights – You don’t want everyone to change the asset information in your database. Discuss user roles and privileges to ensure that the right people have access to change master data. Otherwise, your CMDB and asset repository will become another spreadsheet soon.
Project Management Plan – And finally, you can put together a project/program roadmap for your ITAM implementation, tie that to a detailed project plan with milestones/tasks, get it signed by all stakeholders, review the plan every day to ensure you are on track with all sides covered from a cost/time/quality standpoint etc.
Hope you find some of these general ITAM best practices useful. Needless to say, every organization has its own challenges that needs to be considered in order to drive a successful ITAM program.