Forecasting Intelligence: Transforming IT Asset Management Into Business-Critical Insights
Forecasting Intelligence: Transforming IT Asset Management Into Business-Critical Insights

There is a growing opportunity for IT teams to improve the standing of their IT asset management (ITAM) programs. If done properly, ITAM is really the beginning of any evidence-based decision process.

“That which is asserted without evidence, may be dismissed without evidence.”

– Christopher Hitchens

Interestingly, within all other aspects of life, we recognize that evidence is often needed to make a compelling argument stick. Every single metric tracked by IT and security teams begins with the assumption that you know where everything is and the thingy-ness of each resource is understood.  This domain-specificity is plaguing organizations, blocking our imagination to consider how all that ITAM can be leveraged for a competitive advantage.

In a recent report, Gartner illustrated how a strategic ITAM program can be both proactive risk mitigation and a cost-control measure when the proper governance and technology is in place. When it comes to the risk side of the ledger, ITAM gives you the baseline.  If you ask the question, “What risks do we face?” you necessarily need timely information about the current state to answer it.  When it comes to controlling costs, where to begin?  License consumption, application usage, device lifespans, bloated system specs beyond the user’s need, all have answers lurking in the chambers of our ITAM program.

ITAM programs demonstrate, show, and guide decisions so significantly, that it is more appropriate to think of asset management as an intelligence service for the rest of the organization. The key is not only determining what assets are in use and collecting data on their effectiveness, but analyzing that data for insights about your security posture, risk exposures CAPEX, OPEX, and the potential for how technology can demonstrate a strong ROI.

This is often a common situation that IT and security pros face when trying to advocate for tools to mitigate the chance for compromise. If there isn’t a good map of what assets are already in place and how those investments are being maximized, it can be difficult to argue for a new piece of software, especially one that could proactively protect the organization from a security incident.

Naturally, ITAM programs slide into a pattern of tracking, tracing, updating inventories, and hoping no one darkens their door with a problem. But if we can give simple and proactive ways to amplify business function as an intelligence service, then ITAM can become a shining star. Now, Laura is no longer an asset manager, but is an indispensable intelligence source for strategic decisions, something akin to a meteorologist that gives us the read outs that will portend a sunny forecast or a call to take cover.

When is the last time you packed for a trip without checking your destination’s weather? We don’t do anything without first acknowledging what is and then exploit that knowledge to make better, wiser, more profitable decisions.

For more on how to develop a strategic business case for ITAM within your organization, please visit Absolute.com.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Josh Mayfield

Josh is Absolute’s Director of Security Strategy and works with Absolute customers to leverage technology for stronger cybersecurity, continuous compliance, and reduced risk on the attack surface. He has spent years in cybersecurity with a special focus on network security, threat hunting, identity management, and endpoint security. His research has been featured in leading security publications including, SC Magazine, Infosec, and Dark Reading, and he is often cited by business and tech journalists for his analysis of cryptocurrencies, security operations, and attacker psychology.