One of the key benefits of IT asset management is that it enables agencies to ensure they are getting the maximum return on investment from IT purchases. ITAM repositories can record minute details about all of the IT assets in an environment, including serial number, location, software application and version.
This tracking then enables IT leaders to determine where each asset is in its lifecycle, when it is time for a refresh and how many new assets — from laptops to routers and software licenses — will be needed to support future growth and the agency’s mission.
Some agencies have ITAM tool platforms and strategies in their IT budgets to support such deployments. However, not all of them do.
Establishing a baseline of IT assets now will make it easier to determine which IT assets to retire in the near to medium term. It will also help IT leaders anticipate where their real technology needs are and the investments they will need to make to keep up with demand.
Such tasks will become especially important going into the next fiscal year, with uncertainty over federal budgets looming. Agencies will likely need to make budget cuts, though their magnitude is unclear. Without an ITAM solution in place and running properly, agency IT leaders will be flying blind when it comes to what is in their IT environments and which investments are necessary.
IT Asset Management Best Practices
When putting an ITAM strategy in place, agency IT leaders should ensure that it gives them the ability to conduct strategic planning and allows them to forecast future costs of their IT environments.
This enables them to make realistic budgets and plan for future hardware and software deployments. This is going to be especially crucial given that some agencies have shifted parts of their workforce to work from home on a more permanent basis for an unknown period of time.
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Process and policy are two of the most important pillars of ITAM. They can ensure that unapproved or malicious downloads are discovered on the network and help automate security and compliance practices. ITAM can also support patch management scans to determine software that needs to be updated, all of which can be centrally logged and managed.
Using ITAM as a foundational component for how agencies run their IT shops can drive process efficiency, cost containment and ROI on both existing and new investments.
IT asset management was always an incredibly useful tool for any federal IT leader. Given the current environment and what the future may hold, it is a necessary one.
This article is part of FedTech’s CapITal blog series. Please join the discussion on Twitter by using the #FedIT hashtag.