Asset Management is a business practice with the collection of processes, people, tools and activities that aids on effective, efficient management of assets.
It can also be defined as the provision and management of tangible and physical assets in an effective and efficient way which yields to effective utilization, optimization, and cost reduction for organizations.
Asset Management defines a standardized lifecycle for the management of IT assets; its lifecycle stages can be depicted as request, procure, receive, stock, deploy (install/ move/ add/ change), refurbish, retire, and disposal.
Asset management helps organizations in various activities:
- To plan, control, manage, monitor, evaluate and provide accountability for assets.
- To provide accurate asset information for various business processes.
- To provide real time visibility and status reporting on all assets.
- To make appropriate decisions on financial and compliance related areas like procuring and disposal activities.
- To develop single point of contact with accuracy and consolidated view on all assets.
- To track and monitor the costs of assets and pay the invoices on time.
- To register, track and monitor every asset uniquely.
- To have better understanding on asset availability and reliability.
- To manage assets from requisition to retirement/disposal stage.
- To improve relationships with vendors and suppliers.
- To improve TCO (Total cost of ownership) while measuring all aspects of an asset.
- To gain maximum ROI & VOI from the assets.
- To prevent the non-compliance issues on regulatory and contractual issues.
Not only that, Asset Management also reduces the waste involved in the management of assets for an organization like waiting time for assets, unnecessary stocking of assets, unnecessary movement of assets, overproduction or over-ordering of assets, unnecessary spending on asset.
Scope of Asset Management: Many IT professionals and users often have a misunderstanding with the scope and activities involved in Asset Management, as they presume that ITAM (IT Asset Management) and ITSM (IT Service Management) are the same. Scope of Asset Management can be described as Asset requisition, Asset procurement, Asset costs tracking, Asset receiving, Asset inventory, Assets contract and license maintenance, Asset movement and maintenance, Asset retirement and disposal.
Out of scope for Asset Management: Design or development of the assets, Support and training activities on assets, Associating relationship with assets and its associated configuration items, Management of services in consideration with assets.
If you have IT (Information Technology) being used or managed in your organization, then yes you would need Asset Management processes for effective management of assets. Many organizations assume that we would be good enough with Inventory and Procurement teams just focusing on stocking and buying assets at economic price. May be this acceptable for small scale companies, but definitely not a good idea for medium scaled or large scaled companies.
Key important processes involved in Asset Management are:
- Strategy generation for assets defines a standardized process and procedure for defining the strategies with respect to acquisition and management of assets. It enables developing vision, objectives, critical success factors, roles and responsibilities, policies, plans and standards for the effective management of assets.
- Financial management for assets defines a standardized process and procedures for tracking and managing the financial aspects of an asset, throughout the asset lifecycle. It is responsible for different financial aspects of the asset management organization.
- Asset procurement management defines a standardized process and procedures for purchasing the assets in an organization. Asset procurement acquires the assets at best possible cost without compromising quality and utility.
- Asset inventory management defines a standardized process and procedures for stocking and managing the assets. Asset Inventory places the assets in an organized structure which is easily traceable, accessible, controllable, and manageable.
- Asset catalog management is a standardized process which defines procedures for managing the asset catalog. Asset catalog management ensures that a catalog is created, updated, maintained, and that the asset’s information is updated in the catalog (asset catalog contains accurate information on all available assets in the organization’s inventory).
- Software license management defines a standard process for managing the software licenses to enforce and ensure compliances with software licenses as per the defined contracts. Software license management tracks, controls, and manages the license usage as per the defined contracts in an organization ensuring that the organization doesn’t buy an excess of licenses (wasting money), doesn’t pay penalties and breach the contracts by using the products after the license expiration.
- Asset Operations and Maintenance defines a standardized process for the operations and maintenance of assets in an organization. Asset Maintenance manages the routine operations on assets like movement of assets from one inventory to a workplace, refurbishment of the assets, and reassignment back to the inventory.
- Asset Operations and Maintenance performs the daily operations and maintenance activities based on the requests made in the asset catalog portals or databases.
- Asset Disposal process defines and manages the standard procedures for the disposal of retired and obsolete assets as per the organizational, legal, and environmental requirements. Improper asset disposal methods can cause severe fines, lawsuits, and irreparable brand damage.
- Asset reporting is a standard process for creating, maintaining, and managing the reports on asset management. Asset reporting information will be useful for bringing awareness to the management and improves the management of asset operations.
- Asset audit is a standard process for verifying that asset inventories are correct, and also that asset management proceses are followed correctly.
For more information about asset management software, please contact with SLA Company Limited here.