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Research Journal of Business and Management- RJBM (2017), Vol.4(2),p.221-226 Ajdari, et al.
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DOI: 10.17261/Pressacademia.2017.478 221
DEFINITION AND IMPLEMENTATION OF PROCEDURES FOR IT ASSETS MANAGING
DOI: 10.17261/Pressacademia.2017.478
RJBM- V.4-ISS.2-2017(15)-p. 221-226
Jaumin Ajdari1, Ahmed Abdullai2, Xhemal Zenuni3, Bujar Raufi4, Florie Ismaili5
1South East European University, Tetovo, Macedonia. j.ajdari@seeu.edu.mk
2 South East European University, Tetovo, Macedonia. a.abdullai@seeu.edu.mk
3 South East European University, Tetovo, Macedonia. xh.zenuni@seeu.edu.mk
4 South East European University, Tetovo, Macedonia. b.raufi@seeu.edu.mk
5 South East European University, Tetovo, MAcedonia. f.ismaili@seeu.edu.mk
To cite this document
Ajdari, J., A. Abdullai, X. Zenuni, B. Raufi and F. Ismaili, (2017). Definition and implementation of procedures for IT assets managing.
Research Journal of Business and Management (RJBM), V.4, Iss.2, p.221-226.
Permemant link to this document: http://doi.org/10.17261/Pressacademia.2017.478
Copyright: Published by PressAcademia and limited licenced re-use rights only.
ABSTRACT
Purpose - Manually tracking and management of thousands of IT assets in a company is costly, takes significant time, and has a tendency
for mistakes.
Methodology - In order to reduce costs while planning the budget, companies require a solution to manage the hardware, software, and
information throughout the life cycle of the IT assets, to maintain control, increase accountability and to support strategic decision-making.
Findings - The main purpose of this study is to analyze and develop a IT asset management solution and to help the companies to store
information about the assets, locations, owners and costs.
Conclusion - The success of the ITAM system is measured by savings and by the prevention of the risk. ITAM system helps in budget
planning, cost optimization especialy IT cost optimization, decision-making, process improving, etc.
Keywords: ITAM, ITIL, LCAM, RFID, HelpDesk.
JEL Codes: M15, O32, Q55
1. INTRODUCTION AND LITERATURE REVIEW
Information is the most important strategic resource by which every organization should operate. The quality of IT services
is the key to the collection, analysis, production and dissemination of information within an organization. IT asset
management (ITAM) is a set of business practices that brings together financial, contractual and inventory functions to
support strategic decision-making for the IT environments. Managing IT assets is an important part in the strategy of an
organization. Usually it involves collecting detailed information for inventory, which is used to decide on the purchase and
redistribution of hardware and software. Managing IT assets helps institutions to manage their systems more efficiently by
reducing in time and financial costs, by avoiding unnecessary purchases of assets and promoting the use of existing
resources. Institutions that implement an effective ITAM system minimize risks and costs of the projects for the upgrade of
the IT infrastructure that are based on outdated information, incomplete and less correct. In this regard most institutions
and authors refer ITIL's practices as a basis when defining the administrative processes (Ahmad & Shamsudin, 2013),
(Tanovic & Orucevic, 2012), (Al Mourad & Johari, Resolution of Challenges That Are Facing Organizations before ITIL
Implementation, 2014), (Al Mourad & Hussain, The Impact of Cloud Computing on ITIL Service Strategy Processes, 2014),
(Verlaine, Jureta, & Faulkner, 2015), (Gil-Gómez & Oltra-Badenes, 2014), (Tanovic, Androulidakis, & Orucevic, 2012).
Year: 2017 Volume: 4 Issue: 2
Research Journal of Business and Management (RJBM) ISSN: 2148-6689, http://www.pressacademia.org/journals/rjbm
Research Journal of Business and Management- RJBM (2017), Vol.4(2),p.221-226 Ajdari, et al.
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DOI: 10.17261/Pressacademia.2017.478 222
The need for tracking and monitoring IT assets appears as a result of the various problems related to IT assets management.
The organizations, in general are characterized with the absence of the processes and the adequate systems to track and
manage assets. The organization has no information about the assets, where are allocated and who is using them. Unused
hardware assets often kept in the warehouse without any mechanism of control and without any employees responsible
for them. Different administrators have access to inventory and can make changes without recording any information about
the change. There is also the lack of discipline of operational management, which is responsible, to deal with the tracking of
the assets which are neither present nor documented.
In November 2001 Gartner published the first iterative version of the IT asset management (ITAM) based on capability
maturity model (CMM). In the next three and half years, many of companies started with use of ITAM and have moved up
the maturity level. Researchers indicates that it takes approximately 18 months of dedicated effort to align all people,
processes and tools to facilitate moving from one level to another level (acording to Gartner). It has taken many years of
process maturity and redesign, but ITAM programs, now are widely accepted by senior IT management as a core
management discipline. As a result, fewer implementations are chaotic, and the number of companies achieving active
management has increased. Also as organization (company) information system is evolved from level to level, each step will
yield incremental savings and value, resulting in lowered costs and decreased risk. Today, many companies are recognizing
that contract negotiation is an early stage of the asset life cycle, and ITAM enables efficient negotiation by providing data to
assist with assessing vendor performance. However, most companies do not wish to displace their purchasing systems, so
the ITAM database is used rather as a supplement (Adams, Update to the IT Asset Management Maturity Model, 2005). In
fact, 50 to 80 percent of enterprises have yet to implement ITAM repository technology. A part of those who have
implementation, a very few of them have integrated ITAM to their IT Service Management technology. Despite the
significant financial and productivity benefits, according to Gartner's estimations, only 33% of IT organizations integrate
their IT service desk tools with their ITAM repositories - even if both tools are from the same vendor (White Paper, The
Benefits of Combined IT Service Management and IT Asset Management, 2010). Hawlett Packard believes that asset
management is an evolutionary process (White Paper, Understand how IT asset management works for you, 2012). An
organization cannot achieve the highest level of maturity until a number of processes are created, tested, and
implemented. Adopting a planned and phased approach to ITAM best improvement practice can make the transition more
predictable and help optimize the outcome. According to Gartner, IDC and KPMG we have the following statistics:
70% of organizations have a 30% discrepancy between planned inventory and actual inventory.
Up to 30% of an IT budget could be saved by effective asset management.
Organizations that practice ITAM had 15% or lower TCO. Greatest savings were in procurement, disposal, and
operations.
Enterprises that reconcile assets can identify redundant or rarely used products. An enterprise saved a huge
amount of money by dropping a product for which it was paying maintenance fees but no longer use.
By retiring unused assets, companies may reduce tax bills for assets by as much as 2030%.
These statistics suggest that organizations by implementing ITAM can save money and ensure compliance, and without
implementation, more often, they waste money and also are in noncompliance risk (Adams, Five Ways to Save Money and
Reduce Risk With Your IT Asset Management Tools, 2014).
The paper is structured as follows. On the second section, Life Cycle, is presented the methodology used by organizations
for IT assets management, where is analyzed the integration of the business processes, practices and controls with the aim
to represent best value. The third section, Implementation, in which is presented the way of the project implementation. In
this section are described nonfunctional and functional requirements, database design as well as the used software
technologies. And the last section, Conclusions, where are given some conclusions, achievements and future directions.
2. LIFE CYCLE
Lifecycle Asset Management (LCAM) is the methodology used by organizations for IT assets management. IT asset life cycle
management is the integrated set of business processes, practices and controls that ensure that decisions are financially
prudent and represent best value. The stages of the IT asset life cycle include identification of business needs, purchase of
IT assets required, deployment, use and maintenance of IT assets and, finally, their disposal. Effective life cycle
management should minimize business disruptions and support strategic decision making for the IT environment (Agency
Canadian International Development, 2010). Companies should adopt a comprehensive approach that addresses the IT
tools and support resources, business processes, data and vital technologies in order to ensure effective management tools
and strategic decision making. To achieve operational excellence, it is of extreme necessity to incorporate asset
management into daily business routines, by enabling this holistic approach and managing effectively asset data. To
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support LCAM, four fundamental elements must be taken into consideration: management strategy, optimum
organizational design, long term asset planning and risk management. Before deploying an ITAM solution, to discuss and
define the various stages its hardware assets, it is a helpful practice to an organization. The organization shouls start with
answering to some elementary and simple questions such as: How are they purchased?, How are they used?, How to
decommission and dispose them?, etc., and when it has the answeres and has identified the various stages and processes
associated with their life cycle then it can start with solution implemention (Hawlett Packard White Paper, 2011). The
following diagram shows an example of the different phases of the asset life cycle:
Figure 1: Asset Life Cycle Phases
In most cases a device or asset starts as being on order or procured and then moves through the various lifecycle stages
shown above until the asset is eventually disposed of or decommissioned. The difference in the color indicates which
organization has physical possession of the asset within each stage. The arrows between lifecycles are the business
processes that should consider to ensure that the asset database is properly updated as the result of assets change status.
The above example is only one of the many examples of how an asset lifecycle diagram may look.
Typically, a hardware refresh cycle occurs every 18 months. Depending on data center size the quantity of assets that may
be swapped or purchased can be enormous and keeping an accurate inventory of the newly procured hardware assets and
disposed assets can be a challenge. IT asset management system gives management and ability to administrators, in an
easy way, to search and obtain financial and purchasing information about a particular equipmen t and model or groups of
equipment manufacturers. Retrieving this information can be useful when planning hardware purchases. ITAM not only
tracks and manages assets that are in use and plugged in but alse copes with those that are off-network. These assets are
usable assets in a stock location or in inventory. Before purchasing a new hardware, the responsible coordinators can
search ITAM databse for assets in inventory and determine about available assets which fulfill the new equipment requests.
The ability to track assets that are in inventory ensures the purchas only necessery equipment.
Managing deployed assets is in the core of ITAM capability. The entire change management process can be managed from
the system. Enabling access from any web-enabled device, users can easily record moves, adds and changes. Effectively
logging and recording asset history during the change management process, ensures that asset repository is kept up to date
and populated with accurate device information. Retired or decommissioned assets can also be managed in ITAM. These
are assets that are no longer of used but have not yet been properly disposed of or destroyed. An accurate history of these
devices must be kept for compliance and audit purposes. In some cases, these assets may be retained for a certain time, to
keep secure the sensitive data, until the new asset is established for secure use. In most cases retired assets must be
properly disposed of before they are taken off from the books. Compliance requires that a disposed of asset is the one that
has been officially wiped of data, transferred to a disposal company and the disposal company has provided an official
certificate of disposal ensuring that the asset has been properly disposed of. ITAM provides a secure and acc urate
repository to store all disposed documentation and accurate history of the equipment throughout its entire life cycle, they
can be used for reports and other purposes. Failing to IT assets manage across all their lifecycle from acquisition to their
Device
Ordered Device
Returned
Device
Shipped
Device in
Repair
Device
Received Stored in
Inventory
Device
Installed
Device
Decommissioned
Device
Disposal
Vendor
Organization
Recycling
Company
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disposed of proves that it is costly for businesses, puts them at risk legally, and blinds the businesses to new
opportunities. The reasons why include:
Purchasing new hardware and software is not necessary when there are existing assets available for
redeployment.
Untracked assets are lost, because the responsible employees, have left them without being required any account
for them.
The company pays lease and support contracts for assets that are no longer in service.
The company pays excessive taxes because retired assets are still on the books.
Weak disposal procedures and documentation triggers regulatory fines and penalties.
3. IMPLEMENTATION
Building a secure distributed web application is challenging. Within distributed application, it has a lot of moving parts and
making those parts to work together, in a secure fashion requires a working knowledge that spans to products and
technologies. There are a lot of thing that should be considered; integrating various technologies, being current with
technology, and keep a step ahead of the competition. Designing a distributed application involves making decisions about
its logical and physical architecture, the technologies and infrastructure used to implement its functionality. To put these
effectively decisions, in a proper way, it is obviously to have a sound understanding to the business processes what the
application will performs (its functional requirements), and the levels of scalability, availability, security, and maintainability
required (its non functional, or operational, requirements).
3.1. Nonfunctional Specification
The company information system is implemented with the aim to create a contemporary information system by increasing
the quality of service, transparency and privacy of the employees. The implemented computer system supports a multilayer
architecture. There is a balance of functions in each of these layers. Flexibility and modularity are important. The built
system is able to accommodate the changes, improvements, the new technologies and to minimize the impact of
maintenance cost in the future. The system is able to accommodate an additional new functionality in order to meet new
business practices, or to change existing practices. The system is simple to use and maintain. It is built to be used by a large
number of users through the use of technologies that minimize the need for end user training. The system integrates simple
procedures for routine system maintenance, monitoring and update. The development of a strategy for authentication and
authorization on the distributed web applications is a challenging task. The development of a proper authentication and
authorization during the early stages of application development helps in the elimination of many potential security risks.
Thus, the system provides a good security techniques and easy to administer. The information that support decision-
making, are accessible only for the authorized users, and responsible users and statistical specialists can find answers for
their complex questions.
3.2. Functional Specification
In order to achieve the high satisfaction, to integrate the better opportunities, to give the better features, during the ITAM
development phase, we have analyzed some similar products existing on the market and we have implemented some of
the finding important features in our solution. Also, to take a scientific and technological support we analysed some
scientific papers (Zhu, Song, & Song, 2009), (Hintsch & Turowski, 2013), (Shrestha, Cater-Steel, Tan, & Toleman, 2012). The
important thing was that the system needs to be adapted to the specific conditions and circumstances of the organization
for which the system is developed. ITAM has a few different actors, one of the actor is administrator. The dedicated
functionalities of the administrator as an actor in this system are: Registration of the asset, Impor the asset, Search the
asset, Edit the asset, Registration of interventions and Registration of services. Functionalities listed above are presented
visually with the help of the diagram in figure 2.
3.3. Database Design
Designing a database is one of the most important parts in the development of applications. The database is the core logical
structure that should identify and solve the structure problems and data storage, and also define the majority of the system
logic. In our case the relational database model is used. Because the application is developed under Microsoft t echnologies,
MSSQL Server as a system for database management is used. The required entities are defined as a result of analysis of the
system activities and functionalities.
Research Journal of Business and Management- RJBM (2017), Vol.4(2),p.221-226 Ajdari, et al.
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DOI: 10.17261/Pressacademia.2017.478 225
Figure 2: Functionals Diagram
Administrator
Registration of the asset
Editing the asset
Registration of
interventions
Registration of services
Search the asset
Importing asset
3.4. Used Technologies
To build strong, robust system and flexible system extend, its very important to research and define the technology
platform. To create a list of technologies that can be easily together integrate in accordance of achieving the main goal and
building an end-user software application. Technologies identified as potentially the best choice for our environment are:
.NET Framework 4.6, ASP.NET 5.0 (the application is developed with ASP.NET 5.0 WebForms), C # 6.0 (the programming
language in which the code is written) and IIS 7.5 Web Server. Technologies that are used in development of the interface
are: HTML, CSS, XML, ASP.NET Master Pages, AP.NET Styles, JavaScript, jQuery and JQuery UI Framework.
4. CONCLUSION
Management of technological equipment in an organization has never been more important than nowadays. Presentation
of frequent changes makes it mandatory that every IT manager to track the IT assets of the organization in which it
operates. Managing of the IT assets should not be seen only as something that "would have been nice to have", but for
every institution obviously is something that "must have" for numerous reasons. So it is in the interests of any organization
whether to take any steps towards the implementation of a ITAM solution.
The determination and identification of costs is a vital and integral part of the asset management process. In the past,
comparison between asset alternatives was based mainly upon initial capital costs. However, asset service life consumes
more resources and this must be taken into account as a cost on the ongoing operating and maintenance costs. Both initial
capital costs and ongoing operating and maintenance costs must be used when performing decision-making. In summary,
Life Cycle Costing (LCC) of an asset can be defined as “the total cost throughout its life including planning, design,
acquisition, installation, operation, maintenance, refurbishment, disposal and support costs and any other costs directly
attributable to owning or using the asset”. The cost of the life cycle is a widely used methodology. In the IT asset
management, it is important to determine the cots of the asset throughout their life cycle. Many different worldwide
organizations that deal with research of information technology supports the fact that the implementation of a system of
this nature is not just to organize the assets but it is financial very important for an organization because it reduces the
costs of the organization incomes up to 30% starting from the first year of implementation.
Preparation of reports and obtaining results undoubtedly helps directly in decision-making, thus we obtain a clear view
about how the assets have reacted in the past, which supports the hypothesis concerning the improvement of the strategic
decision making as a result of the implementation of the ITAM system.
The success of the ITAM system is not measured only by savings but also by the prevention of the risks which can only be
achieved if stakeholders across the business commit itself to:
Plan the budget, to optimize life cycle costs of assets and to destine the expenses to acquisitions or innovation strategy;
Protect the high decision makers from ill-informed decisions on investments by engaging them to prove life cycle costs;
Protect the IT budget against software license audits while maintaining compliance;
Satisfy the business needs by investing not only in equipment but also in people and improving processes.
IT buyers need to know more about existing assets, the life cycles and competitive alternatives to new assets when they are
negotiating to buy. Gartner recommends (Bona, 2013) that CEOs and their IT leadership teams need to follow five major
organizing principles to create and sustain a cycle for continuous improvement: Strategize and Plan, Develop Governance,
Drive Change Management, Execute and Measure and Improve.
Under the guidance of the above instructions, we can draw the conclusion that every successful project starts with the
Research Journal of Business and Management- RJBM (2017), Vol.4(2),p.221-226 Ajdari, et al.
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DOI: 10.17261/Pressacademia.2017.478 226
people, processes and technology. When the system affects every part of the business, we need a leader which will
harmonize people, processes and technology together in a working environment. To be successful, it is important to have a
common database as a real single source, where are registered all activities happens during the asset life cycle. This will
help in generating necessary reports that will provide a clear picture of the condition of the assets. Improvements should
continue, so that the level of maturity to lift up on at the highest possible level. During the journey we need to move in
compliance with the organization policies. For smart managers, the evolution of the ITAM system should be seen as an
exciting opportunity for improvement. A healthy and pragmatic approach is needed to find the optimal practices. Finally,
success comes when the strategy turns into action.
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Adams, P. (2005). Update to the IT Asset Management Maturity Model. Gartner.
Five Ways to Save Money and Reduce Risk With Your IT Asset Management Tools
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Information Technology Asset Lifecycle Management
Agency Canadian International Development. (2010). Information Technology Asset Lifecycle Management. Canadian International Development Agency.
ITAM Key Initiative Overview
  • A Bona
Bona, A. (2013). ITAM Key Initiative Overview. Gartner.