IT Asset Lifecycle Management – What Is It?

A few months back, we published a blog explaining the ins and outs of IT Asset Management (ITAM), but now it’s time to get a little more detailed and talk about IT Asset Lifecycle Management (ITALM).

Ready? Let’s do this.

What Is IT Asset Lifecycle Management?

If IT Asset Management helps you manage and secure all your digital assets and the physical tech devices that handle those digital assets, then IT Asset Lifecycle Management is a highly specific part of the total IT Asset Management process.

In IT Asset Lifecycle Management (ITALM), the focus is on the full life of an IT asset, from the moment you hire an IT services consultant to help you determine the best IT solutions – all the way to the moment you finally dispose of the IT asset for good.

While it sounds like a lengthy time period and process, it truly only has about four steps from start to finish.

The 4 Steps to Managing the IT Asset Lifecycle

Since the purpose of IT Asset Lifecycle Management is to determine if it is more cost-effective to replace or repair an existing IT asset, the process officially begins when you start to notice an old asset slowing down or otherwise causing trouble.

At that point, you kick off the four lifecycle steps for that IT asset:

  • Planning – This stage involves the research into a new product, as well as planning the timeline for a new hardware or software rollout. It’s a pretty fast process.
  • Procurement and Implementation – Depending on what your IT asset is, buying and setting up the solution is usually a pretty quick part of the total process. Some implementations take a few months for “go-live” (when you kick things off officially), but most tools can be implemented in a few hours to a week.This stage also includes setting up barcoding or other processes that help you track physical IT assets that you own.
  • Operation and Maintenance – This is the longest stage of the full IT Asset Lifecycle Management process. If you take care of IT maintenance properly, including patching, updates, license renewals, and audits, this stage can last a very long time, indeed. (And that’s what you want because the longer your tools run well, the more money you save.)
  • Disposal – Eventually, all IT assets die. Either your software becomes obsolete or reaches end of life, or your hardware just can’t keep up with the latest software updates. This is a sad and frustrating stage of the full IT asset management process… but it is inevitable.

    When your software or hardware starts slowing down your company or costs too much to repair again, it’s time to replace that asset.

    But first you have to determine how you will dispose of the previous asset, whether you wipe the data and recycle it, donate it to charity, or (in the case of software) simply migrate the data and delete the old software.

    Your company can approach these steps proactively or reactively (either is fine, as long as you act fast), but these will be the steps you follow for effective IT Asset Lifecycle Management.

Why Bother Managing Lifecycles of IT Assets?

Simply put, when you manage the lifecycle, you’ll have good warning about when you should start thinking about replacing an IT asset.

Now that the pandemic has proven just how important all these IT assets are (cloud software, collaboration software, mobile device management solutions, laptops, etc.), you need to make sure you have enough cash in the bank to afford new IT services and solutions precisely when you need them. After all, your business probably can’t run without IT these days.

Want Some Help Setting Up Lifecycle Management for Your IT Assets?

We can all use some help sometimes – especially when it comes to setting up an organized process that handles expensive, mission-critical tech tools and services.

As soon as you’re ready for helpful advice, a pointer in the right direction, or someone to roll up their sleeves and do all the work for you (yay!), all you have to do is reach out to one of the best IT services companies in Seattle: Interplay.

Get in touch with Interplay now to learn more.

For 20 years, Interplay has been helping Seattle business leaders get the most out of their business technology because we’re the ones who step in as the first choice for IT support, we’re the friendliest folks to call when you want to save money on your IT budget, and we’re some of the leading experts in Seattle on how to secure your organization’s data in our WFH world.

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