The Digital Revolution has brought with it a number of changes (and challenges) for organisations, but also a huge opportunity to drive better business outcomes. In this blog we take a look at the role effective IT Asset Management (ITAM) should play in your digital transformation strategy to ensure you reap the benefits.
In the age of digital transformation, people are using more devices than ever before. It is widely believed globally that the average person has around three connected devices, but this is set to triple by 2025 (1).
What that means for business is a growing number of assets and a growing problem in ITAM. Employees no longer solely work from their company’s hardware, often installing software onto multiple personal devices and vice versa. Organisations are left managing various devices, systems and platforms as well as facilitating flexible ways of working, which means their IT estate can spread far from HQ.
This is having a huge impact on scarce IT resources who are left to manage the situation with insufficient tools, processes and resource. And at a time when the global cyber security threat has never been higher.
A GROWING DISCONNECT
In many cases, the demands for new hardware and software has resulted in a boom of ‘shadow IT’ with staff – and sometimes entire business units – bypassing IT departments and making their own IT investments.
This trend in self-procurement is creating a disconnect between the central IT function and the rest of the business, known as the ‘Disruption Gap’.
“The Disruption Gap or the ‘Technology Disruption Gap’ as we refer to it, is quite an established term for many IT professionals, particularly those working in the corporate sector,” explains Damien Masterson, ITAM Consultant at Trustmarque. “It can be reflected in the way that business units are sometimes showing a lack of confidence that IT teams will serve their needs in time and therefore self-serving. The Technology Disruption Gap is also demonstrated in the rising disconnect between what is visible in the centralised or ‘catalogued’ IT estate Vs what is actually in use in the business.”
According to Gartner (2), in 2016, 17% of IT spending in large enterprises was controlled outside of the IT dept. However, By 2020 this is predicted to increase to 50%.
As well as the increased complexity for IT departments in ensuring all assets are safe, compliant and appropriate for use, shadow IT is creating a wealth of issues when it comes to visibility, control and budgeting among others.
TIME TO TAKE CONTROL
Of course, the consequence of the Digital Revolution is not an era of doom and gloom. The flexibility in ways of working is making people more productive and more “available” to work than ever before. For better or worse, we’re able to react, respond and collaborate around the clock, no matter where we are in the world.
This presents an opportunity for organisations to reconsider their IT asset management policies, procedures and broader strategy.
“An organisation’s ITAM strategy is typically rated on a maturity scale often referred to as the SAM (Software Asset Management) Maturity scale,” explains Damien.
At the lower end of the scale, often referred to as ‘basic’ or ‘ad-hoc’ SAM, are organisations who don’t currently deploy software asset management and have very little visibility of what is in use, leaving staff to self-govern. At the other end of the scale is ‘optimised’ or ‘dynamic’ SAM in which asset management is seen as a strategic asset that can help support business-wide objectives.
“Our goal is to raise our customer’s SAM Maturity to the highest level. We work with organisations of all sizes to understand their existing IT estate, identify areas of weakness and improvement and support them with their ITAM business case and build an ongoing optimisation roadmap,” says Damien.
“An organisation’s ITAM strategy is typically rated on a maturity scale often referred to as the SAM (Software Asset Management) Maturity scale… Our goal is to raise our customer’s SAM Maturity to the highest level.”
REALIGNED AND RECONNECTED
According to Damien, there are many organisations who have been able to successfully streamline the use of multiple assets and systems taking them from “chaos to control”.
“Chaos may be a bit strong, but it is always a risk if ITAM doesn’t become an integral part of your operational strategy,” says Damien.
However, with the cutting-edge tools available now – including Trustmarque’s self-developed analytics tool Prism which utilises Microsoft Power BI to create in-depth IT insights – it is possible to properly assess and evaluate the most complex IT environments ready for optimisation.
Couple that with the growing ITAM expertise within Trustmarque and “there’s a great opportunity for us to work together to help customers to thrive in the era of digital transformation,” says Damien.
In summary, through dynamic Asset Management IT departments can be realigned with the rest of the business to drive automation and deliver better business outcomes.
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By Katherine Murphy, content enthusiast
(1) Research from Safaei, Bardia & Monazzah, Amir Mahdi & Barzegar Bafroei, Milad & Ejlali, Alireza. (2017). Reliability Side-Effects in Internet of Things Application Layer Protocols.
(2) Gartner, Metrics and Planning Assumptions Required to Drive Business Unit IT Strategies, Kurt Potter, Stewart Buchanan, 21 April 2016