Asset Management Technology

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What is asset management technology, and what can it offer your company or organization? 

Asset management technology traces the complete lifecycle of a company or organization’s fixed assets, from the time they’re acquired to their replacement and everything that happens in between. Throughout a fixed asset’s useful life, it’s likely to change hands, require maintenance and repair and perhaps a few updates along the way. The asset will also depreciate, a process that must be reported for accounting and tax purposes. Tracking and managing fixed assets at every step of their respective lifecycles helps reduce theft, loss and waste and maximizes investment.

Investing in a technological solution for your asset management needs is a smart decision that will pay off almost immediately. “An accurate, real-time asset tracking system is more important than a lot of companies realize,” says Rex Kurzius, Founder and CEO of Asset Panda. “Unfortunately, companies who don’t have a handle on their asset management typically lose considerable amounts of money and time before they begin to seek a better solution.” 

Assets are often placed into one of two categories: fixed assets, or physical objects like machines, equipment, furniture, office space, information technology and other tangible items; or intangible assets like intellectual property (IP), financial assets, and digital assets. Asset management is all about knowing the assets you have at any point in time, along with where those items are located, who has them, and, if applicable in the case of fixed assets, what sort of condition those items are in currently. 

There are various types of asset management including fixed asset management, digital asset management (DAM), IT asset management (ITAM), enterprise asset management (EAM, or the systems an organization has in place to track and manage its physical assets throughout their respective lifecycles), financial asset management, and infrastructure asset management, or the management of public infrastructure assets like bridges, waterways, electric grids, mass transit systems, railways, roads, water supplies and more. 

Why is asset management important? 

The most direct answer may be that comprehensive and accurate asset management has a direct influence on your bottom line - and that’s why asset management technology is such a vital resource. 

Improves operational efficiency

Having their fingers on the pulse of their asset data empowers asset managers to make more informed decisions and save time and money. By knowing what they have, asset managers can, for example, determine whether they really need to order additional fixed assets or if they have available inventory they can use, instead. 

Fixed assets each have an estimated useful life. In order to maximize that lifespan, companies must keep up with routine preventive maintenance on those items that require it. The failure to do so can result in slow-moving, buggy machines, equipment breakdowns, expensive repairs, premature asset replacements, and even security breaches.  

Increases transparency 

Users have a full view into the entire inventory of their organization’s fixed assets, which allows them to identify available assets and transfer them to the appropriate location where they’re needed. All asset data is consolidated in a single, centralized location, so it’s far easier for companies to report on, track and manage their fixed assets at the macro or micro level. For digital assets, asset management technology provides a place where asset purchases and updates may be documented; keeping track of those records may also help protect data security, according to a 2017 Gartner report entitled “Maturing the IT Asset Management Discipline Primer for 2017.”

Maintaining transparency with your asset data also makes the tax filing process much easier. Because all of their real-time information is stored on one, easy-to-access platform, companies can avoid guesswork, costly errors and associated fines and other penalties. They also save time combing through manual records and files to gather the necessary information they need to file their taxes. 

Reduces manual work and errors 

Asset management technology employs automation to manage the location, condition, periodic maintenance, repairs and general lifespan of fixed assets. In turn, this approach eliminates the all-too-common occurrence of human error that happens when employees manually key barcodes and other information into an Excel spreadsheet. In addition to accuracy, companies that use asset management technology also raise the bar on accountability throughout their respective organizations. This reduces or even eliminates lost or stolen assets and ghost assets, or assets on which a company continues to pay insurance despite their being long since missing from inventory due to poor recordkeeping practices. 

IT asset management 

Of all of the types of asset management, IT asset management is among the most relevant to companies today. IT asset management monitors and tracks assets including mobile phones and tablets, laptops and desktops, servers, software and associated software licenses, the terms of which must be adhered to by the organization in question; failure to do so can result in stiff penalties. 

An IT asset management platform not only catalogs a company’s IT assets and their respective locations, it can also help IT managers schedule and stay on top of software updates, license expirations and more. Keeping IT assets updated as necessary ensures that assets run efficiently and can help mitigate security risks. In this age of the Internet of Things (IoT), “many of the devices businesses and consumers use daily are connected to the Internet, allowing them to receive data,” according to Asset Panda in a white paper entitled “The Future of Asset Management: How Businesses Will Benefit from Asset Tracking in the Age of the IoT,” which cites a 2018 projection by Juniper Research that the number of IoT-connected devices will climb to 46 billion by the end of 2021. 

This underscores why asset management technology is of critical importance: It helps companies track both tangible and intangible assets, maintain high standards of efficiency and accuracy, and even obtain a competitive advantage in their respective industries.

The Asset Panda approach

The asset management industry is a competitive environment saturated with SaaS solutions and asset management firms aiming to help companies that are looking to lower costs and make a significant change to their asset tracking operations with the use of technology. The future of asset management will be dominated by pioneers, like Asset Panda, that are leveraging new technologies, artificial intelligence and steadily introducing new product offerings that strengthen its value proposition and improve the customer experience. 

Mobile capabilities

Asset Panda’s IoT-ready mobile platform enables companies of all sizes and in all industries to monitor and manage their IT assets using the mobile devices they already carry. They can conduct routine mobile audits, set up custom reminders and alerts, add attachments like photos, documents, voice notes and videos, track updates and repairs, access maintenance histories and scan barcodes. 

Data centralization

This intuitive platform has digital capabilities that are designed to bring every stakeholder in the lifecycle of an IT or other fixed asset into the conversation, therefore eliminating communication gaps and confusion and promoting accuracy and accountability throughout the organization. Bringing everyone on board and maintaining robust, real-time data helps stop double purchases before they happen and simplifies end-of-useful-life replacement workflows and notifications. And, “when done properly, ITAM can also reward organizations with stronger vendor discounts that have a direct impact in lowering both hardware and software spend,” according to a white paper issued by Service Now entitled “IT Asset Management.” 

Interestingly, the report also points out that “the reason ITAM systems rarely deliver on their potential is not a functional one - most solutions offer more bells and whistles than many organizations would care to deploy. The main reason for not delivering success can be blamed on the difficulties of integrating them into the overall IT ecosystem.” 

Unified tech stack

Asset Panda integrates easily with legacy systems and applications while also providing full integration with its web app. Its user-friendly, streamlined interface makes it easy for users to get up to speed with the platform. Fully customizable features - from custom fields to groups, reports and workflow actions - put users in full control of how they organize and track their assets. 

Whether you’re managing IT assets or other fixed assets, you’ll gain complete visibility into their respective lifecycles, improve your efficiency and enable your employees to stay focused on their other priorities with asset management technology that adapts to the way you work. To learn more about Asset Panda and our capabilities, go to www.assetpanda.com.

By:

Courtney Roush

Courtney Roush is a freelance writer, editor, and communications strategist with 25 years of experience. Her favorite discipline is crisis communications – and it’s a highly relevant one in our present times.

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