Small businesses are fighting the hard fight. They want to raise ROIs, lower costs, and enhance productivity across the board, but this can often be tougher the smaller your business is. With little room to play around, you’re often stuck with greater risks than larger corporations. Small business owners are also concerned about their asset investments because these might be a significant capital expenditure for them. The truth is, these assets can also be a huge source of savings and efficiency if managed well! But what do we mean when we talk about ‘assets’?
Most small businesses have hundreds of IT assets such as laptops, keyboards, printers, and so on. Managing these can be a hassle, and any downtimes can lead to huge blockages in your operations. This is why your small business needs a smart and simple solution like an IT asset tracking software. It can help you optimize, refine, and achieve success with ease. The best part is that this works no matter where your assets are located, from your office to remote sites, user workstations, data centers, and beyond!
What does IT asset tracking software do?
IT asset tracking involves collecting contractual, financial and inventory data which is then analyzed together to make informed decisions about your IT landscape. It will guide you about what size your IT inventory should be, and what your purchase decisions or maintenance strategies should look like.
Say you have a newly hired employee coming in. You need to give them a new workstation, complete with all the gadgets and gizmos your staff has access to. The assignment of these assets can be extremely easy if you use an IT management tool. Simply scroll through your available equipment, mark the new employee as a custodian, and see where the items are located with just a few clicks!
Therefore, managing IT assets well gives you a wider picture of your IT infrastructure, and provides you with an in-depth understanding of the lifecycle of these assets. Below, we’ll take you through some of the main reasons your company needs to invest in an IT inventory software.
Improve visibility into your inventory
IT asset management goes a long way towards keeping track of what you already have and allowing you to utilize it to its full potential. Visibility into such items is a huge benefit; it’s only when you know what you have that you can best manage it! IT admins are therefore able to use this solution to see current stock levels and check out usage trends, enabling greater control over your IT landscape.
You can easily look at which items are currently available, and run reports to see when you need to order more equipment. This can help you keep a much ‘leaner’ inventory. This is incredibly helpful because the technical equipment is not only costly to store but can also start malfunctioning if it isn’t in regular use. Therefore, you only order what you need, and you order it well in advance!
Manage the asset lifecycle with ease
Like everything else, IT assets also have replacement and disposal dates. You can use a cloud-based software to check how long an item has been in use when it needs to be checked into maintenance, and how much salvage value it would offer up when you’re through with it. These kinds of data points help you make informed decisions about retiring and procuring assets, which is at the core of robust asset lifecycle management.
There’s more to this! Vendor contract management modules that come with such a solution allow you to see when to renew or extend a contract with a hardware or software provider. You can do this by browsing through all kinds of details including purchase orders, vendor details, and expiration dates. Knowledge is power, and an IT asset tracking software is very powerful indeed!
Reduce security and compliance risks
IT security is a big deal. To be fully confident you’re doing right by the security needs of your company, there are a few basic questions you should always know the answers to. For example, who’s using your business assets, what are their access permissions, and does their asset usage conform to company policy? You can use an IT management solution to constantly monitor your employee’s activities as they relate to your company assets. Any unauthorized checkouts will be denied, and equipment in places they’re not meant to be will be easily flagged up through an audit!
All this helps you avoid costly non-compliance fines and keep a check on overspending on maintenance, support, and licenses. Small issues can, therefore, be tackled quickly, before they become a major problem.
Automate asset tracking and discovery
Gone are the days of time-consuming spreadsheets with manually entered asset details prone to inconsistencies. Time is a crucial factor for small business owners wanting to do everything themselves. The process becomes easier and quicker with IT asset tracking solutions that integrate with helpful apps and allow you to automate a huge chunk of a system administrator’s responsibilities.
By having the system take on the headache of logging, processing, and analyzing data, you can save your company a huge deal of time and effort. IT asset tracking solutions structure and automate key IT business operations including purchasing, maintenance, distribution, approval, and requests. Workflow automation frees up costly human resources, increases accuracy and speeds service delivery responses – letting you focus on higher value activity.
IT needs are growing at an increasingly fast pace. So what’s the next step for your small business? You need to keep yourself aligned with the latest in technology and ensure you aren’t hampered by extra administrative burdens. An asset tracking software built around your IT infrastructure will detect issues and guide you towards a more efficient management style, and all with little effort on your part!
About the Author:
Momina Sohail is a guest writer, Durham graduate, and Commonwealth Scholar. She works as a Communications Manager at EZOfficeInventory, an IT asset tracking software for small businesses and beyond. She is interested in the way technology interacts with contemporary businesses and enables them to focus on core efficiencies.