Some people neglect regular dental check-ups and cleanings, and then sorely regret it when they get a toothache. By that time, it means a rush to the dentist, perhaps a root canal…all painful and expensive, and easily avoided.
We see the same thing happen with ITAM. More often than not, we’ve seen ITAM solutions get rushed into place during a crisis.
For example, we just worked with a enterprise client hammered by an audit finding showing their data center asset inventory was out of compliance with company finance regulation. This, coupled with an ending fiscal cycle, forced them to slam in an ITAM solution in a couple of months. Since they had to complete an inventory in two months, they starting capturing data before completing the implementation of a robust tracking system.
It took them three months to complete the inventory, and now that they have a real system in place, they realize the data they captured initially isn’t accurate. Time to do it again. Oh, and now the Desktop group wants to be involved, with different requirements not supported by the data center solution. Maybe they can get to that next year, but there will certainly be a data cleansing project and a refactor of processes to support the new group.
The needs of the entire organization could have been addressed with a single solution had there been the patience and the investment of time necessary to get everyone on the same page. Sure, they were up in two months, but they have to do the whole project over again next year because of new requirements. Did they really save themselves any money?
During a crisis, there’s insufficient time available to do an adequate job of defining your requirements, getting cross-organization buy-in, defining your end goal, and evaluating and choosing the best vendor. You can’t do a proof of concept and refine the processes necessary to have the system work smoothly and efficiently.
Unfortunately, many people get motivated only during periods of crisis. And the hardest time to implement an ITAM solution is when you’re under the gun to produce a report.
Implementing ITAM before a crisis means a much better opportunity to choose the system that’s best for you. It means far easier set-up, time for proper training and integration. Then, if a crisis does hit, you’re prepared and can easily generate the reports and take the action necessary to minimize the impact.
In other words, don’t wait until you have a toothache. It costs sooo much more when you wait until your tooth is about to fall out.
Author: Tom Watson
Tom Watson is AMI’s President and CEO. He began his career in high tech in 1996, as a software engineer for his own software company. After a subsequent stint at IT Asset Management firm Micropath as senior architect for that company’s asset tracking system, he founded AMI to develop hardware asset tracking technology solutions for enterprise IT Asset Management customers.