What Is an IT Asset Manager, and Why They’re Essential
An IT Asset Manager is tasked with managing all IT assets within a business. That includes anything from software and hardware to digital assets and cloud services. IT managers are also primarily responsible for the deployment and operational functions of an IT Asset Management (ITAM) system. As well as the strategic management of all IT assets and the day-to-day management of workflow tasks.
What Does an IT Asset Manager Do?
Much like an asset manager taking stock of fixed assets, an IT asset manager is responsible for the management and maintenance of a business’s IT assets. Whether that be securing data-laden spreadsheets for a small business or ensuring software licenses are compliant for multiple users across a large enterprise.
The vast array of IT equipment and infrastructure means IT asset managers must have versatile skills when it comes to asset management processes. For instance, not only must they ensure network security across a business’s cloud applications, but they’re also expected to plan maintenance for computer monitor defects.
Depending on the structure of a business, the roles of an IT asset manager can regularly change. But there are typical roles that an IT manager will always have a hand in, including:
- Calculating depreciation and ROI values
- Scheduling maintenance for IT equipment
- Planning for the procurement of assets
- Managing equipment users and usability
- Maintaining and renewing software licenses
- Planning for the disposal or replacement of IT assets
Typical Workflow Tasks of an IT Manager
The tasks and responsibilities of an IT asset manager can vary depending on the industry. These tasks can essentially be broken down into four key groups:
Planning and Procurement
- Forecast and produce procurement strategies for IT assets across an organisation.
- Effectively plan development and upgrades procedures for software, hardware and other IT equipment.
- Valuable project management on a range of company-wide asset and technology projects.
- Oversee the implementation and on-boarding of new software and hardware solutions.
- Oversee and regulate the management of contracts and licences in relation to IT assets. Including negotiation, contract renewals and vendor management.
- Working with third-party suppliers on software and hardware provision, troubleshooting, updates and improvements.
- Collaborate with other teams and departments.
- Support others in the asset team with the day to day admin and processing of assets.
- Effective management of security tools and all, if any, security protocols.
Management of IT Assets
- Solely responsible for the management of assets and inventory, and maintenance scheduling and repairs.
- Presenting key asset management data and reports to managers and teams outside of the organisation.
- Development and execution of asset management policies, procedures and processes. Including identification, accountability maintenance and location of assets.
- Forecast and budgeting management, as well as financial asset planning.
- Effectively managing asset life cycles to improve quality control of assets, including software, hardware and cloud technologies.
By analysing the roles and tasks of an IT Asset Manager, it is clear that they need to possess a variety of different skills to succeed. And, as IT assets and technology develop, an IT Asset Manager needs to keep their knowledge and skills up to date. Therefore, by ensuring that a manager is working with the right asset management software and tools, their job can be considerably easier.
4 Important Roles of an IT Asset Manager
Understand the Industry
IT Asset Managers will be aware of specific circumstances and requirements that relate to the organisation they work in. Whether that’s the need for a certain maintenance report or the particular way an asset needs to be stored.
Or, simply, just the appropriate way of working within the industry.
A good IT Asset Manager can make these processes a lot more manageable for any business.
Their insider knowledge can help to map out systems and plan the utilisation of asset management software.
They can also understand the intricacies of who needs what type of access to which systems, and how software and hardware solutions will be used by teams. This also helps an organisation to develop its ITAM policies and procedures.
Communicate With Stakeholders
If you’ve ever been involved in an IT project being driven by someone without relevant IT knowledge, then you’ll understand the importance of having an experienced head leading on projects.
An even worse scenario is having projects without a leading personal, which can quickly become infuriating and unproductive.
As part of their role, an IT Asset Manager can take the leading role in relevant projects and work with different teams and stakeholders across the organisation.
This can include leading IT support teams, purchasing and procurement, change management, and maintenance teams.
It can also be an effective solution to have managers acting as the link between external suppliers and an organisation. This would allow for consistent messages that are delivered in a way that makes sense to all stakeholders involved in the project.
Understand the Complexity of Software Licensing
Although a small part of an IT asset manager’s role, having subsequent knowledge of licensing laws can prove vital for both security and development.
If a third-party supplier, as opposed to an in-house manager, doesn’t handle an organisation’s licences, it can quickly become a complex issue.
However, an IT Asset Manager can ensure that the appropriate proof of software licences is available and that it is built into future contracts.
Carry out Company Audits
An effective IT management tool can make auditing and reports considerably easier. However, you’ll still need human involvement to make sure that everything goes to plan.
This is where a qualified IT asset manager can be of assistance.
Whilst they may not be able to predict exactly when a surprise audit is going to take place, they can put the steps in place to prepare.
They can also plan repetitive tasks in advice, and run practice audits to familiarise everyone with the process ahead of time. This allows any issues to be mitigated in the event of the real thing.