Do You Need a Hardware Asset Management Plan?
Your ITAM, or IT asset management strategy is an essential part of spending wisely and getting the greatest use value from pricey IT equipment and devices. A failure to plan could result in wasteful and negligent practices that cost you unnecessary funds and put your company and your customers at risk.
There’s no question that every responsible North Dakota business should have a management strategy in place when it comes to IT hardware and software. What you may not know is why this is so important. Here are just a few reasons why hardware asset management is necessary.
You know the importance of keeping software up-to-date. If you don’t do so regularly, it may not remain secure, or it might not integrate properly with newer programs. Luckily, most software comes with built-in scheduling for updates, or at least notifications that you should perform updates.
What about hardware? The firmware that allows your machinery to interface with the many programs you install also requires updates to continue functioning properly and protecting your network and your sensitive data. Part of your ITAM plan should be scheduling frequent firmware updates and other hardware maintenance to ensure you get the most use value from your devices.
Timeline for Replacement
The bulk of your ITAM strategy will revolve around life-cycle planning, which includes everything from when you purchase new equipment, to maintaining hardware for a specified duration, to when you’re planning to upgrade again (the rule of thumb is typically 3-5 years). Why is this important? Can’t you just wait and see what’s new and decide on upgrades based on the market?
You can certainly play it fast and loose with your IT asset purchases, but planning provides the best opportunity to spend wisely, plan for migration to new hardware and software on a schedule that best meets your needs, and ensure that you get the most out of every dollar you spend on IT equipment and devices.
Your IT assets are not cheap, so you definitely don’t want them walking out the door, so to speak. In order to ensure that you always know where devices are and you can elicit responsible behavior from employees, you need to keep careful inventory by tracking devices, with barcode scanning when you check them in and out, on-device software trackers, or both.
Destruction and Recycling or Remarketing
The final piece of the puzzle when it comes to ITAM planning is an ITAD, or IT asset disposition strategy, and this has to do with what happens to devices at the end of their useable life cycle. Tossing them, unsecured, into a closet or storage room is not the answer, especially if you want to prevent theft that could lead to data breach.
Your ITAD strategy should include securing device and removing them from the premises in a timely manner for destruction and recycling, or alternately, wiping and refurbishing, so you can resell them to see some return on investment. You’ll have to consider the pros and cons of each before you decide what works best for your company.
If your North Dakota business is ready to create an ITAM plan that includes a smart ITAD strategy, contact certified ITAD service provider SEAM today at 605-274-7326 (SEAM) or online to learn more.