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Countries are Opening Back Up: What To Do with the Extra IT Assets
Due to the movement to work remotely, organizations may have needed to buy extra IT assets. These include hardware assets, software assets, and mobile assets. All of these extra assets are necessary during the work-from-home period. However, countries and states are beginning to open up. The IT assets that were so necessary to maintaining business continuity and productivity are no longer needed. This is a problem for professionals in the IT Asset Management (ITAM) field, whose industry goal is to maximize benefits, which includes increasing financial gain. When all of these assets come flooding back to the organization, which may no longer serve a purpose, the ITAM professionals will need to find a way to make those unused assets beneficial to the organization.
• Figure Out What the Latest Goals and Plans Are – In order to figure out what to do with these extra assets, the IT Asset Manager will need to revisit what the organization’s goals and future plans are. Does the organization plan on growing? Do they want to go through a technological update? Did they take a major financial loss due to purchasing the new assets and want to make up for it? The IT Asset Manager needs to figure this out before they decide what to do with their extra IT assets.
Meeting with the executives and CXOs is an effective way to learn what actions need to be taken. Their plans may have changed due to the impact of COVID-19, so it is a good idea to ask them what their most pressing goals and plans are for the future.
• Learn What the Organization Has (Inventory Knowledge) – Before the IT Asset Manager can begin deciding what surplus assets need to go where, they need to discover what the organization actually has. Assets may have been chaotically purchased and given to employees during the rapid work-from-home initiative, so the tagging and discovery of what assets were given may have been done hastily due to lack of time. Since this may have occurred, taking the time to account and identify what assets the organization has is a necessary step. The IT Asset Manager may need to meet with specific individuals to go over what assets they used, what they were given, if they brought all of the assets back to the organization, what was left at home, etc.
Once the assets are identified and their location is known, the IT Asset Manager can make knowledgeable decisions on what to do with the assets.
• Place the Incoming Assets into Storage – Until the assets are each given a destination and a plan has been formed on what to do with them, the extra assets need to be placed into a secure location. Doing this allows the IT Asset Manager to have time to figure out what to do with the assets and to investigate different options for them, all while keeping the assets safe.
• End Licenses and Subscriptions – Extra software programs and subscriptions may have been purchased. After employees return to work and the hardware assets are no longer needed and are ready for storage or disposition, remove the subscriptions and licenses from them. Keeping licenses attached to assets that are retired or in storage can lead to unnecessary, expensive costs. Removing these subscriptions and licenses will save the organization massive budgetary dollars, which will help them to recover financially from the work-from-home requirement.
• Different Plans and Objectives Require Different Solutions – While organizations universally want to increase financial savings, they also have other goals that need to be reached. Since every organization has different goals, the best solutions are going to be different for each one.
• Surplus can be a good thing – Some organizations might be planning on expanding or growing, so keeping the extra assets might be a good choice. A good idea is to place the extra assets into storage until the organization can get new bodies working. Consider if software licenses and subscriptions should be removed from these hardware assets. Factor in how long it will be before new employees use these assets and the costs to keep the licenses on the assets.
Another consideration is that some organizations want to keep extra assets around in case their current ones break. In this situation, the IT Asset Manager needs to consider how many assets they should keep and how many to get rid of.
• Replace the old with the new – Organizations might have wanted to go through a technological update, so the executives might want the newer assets to replace the older assets. In this situation, the IT Asset Manager would likely end up disposing most of the old assets. The means of disposition might need to be investigated, or if there is already an IT Asset Disposition (ITAD) process in place, the IT Asset Manager can follow that.
• Resell to help financially recover – Organizations that may have taken a serious financial hit may prefer this option because it could help the organization recover from the sudden, high expense of purchasing assets.
The IT Asset Manager will need to take time to research and investigate what vendors or third-party organizations will provide the most money for the assets. Since the IT Asset Manager wants to increase the Return on Investment (ROI), they should try to find the organization that will pay the most for their unwanted assets.
Use caution if reselling the assets to employees. This may lead to employees wanting maintenance and technology help from the organization. However, the organization is not responsible for the upkeep of the resold assets.
• Give to charity to help others and the organization – Giving the unwanted IT assets to charities will give an organization a positive reputation and create a beneficial impact on their local community. There are many charities that are devoted to giving technology to those who cannot afford it. Many people that need these assets are in poorly funded school systems or public libraries. By donating the assets, the organization will not only help countless others who may need to use the asset, but they will also be saving money by not having to maintain and securely store these assets. The assets’ value also becomes a tax write-off which can help reduce financial burden when reconciling end of year financials.
IT Asset Managers will need to learn what the organization’s goals are to determine what to do with the extra assets. Once this is figured out, the IT Asset Manager can choose the next best path to take. Each organization is going to have a different situation, so the IT Asset Manager needs to think creatively to decide what needs to happen. Once a plan is set, the organization can reap the benefits of the IT Asset Manager’s plan.
Briones, J. (2016, March 11). Websites’ automatic-renewal policies can lead to trouble. Retrieved May 5, 2020, from https://www.computerworld.com/article/3042901/websites-automatic-renewal-policies-can-lead-to-trouble.html