Managing Distributed Assets In The Remote Enterprise
Ever since the onset of the COVID pandemic, more employees across organizations and industries have been working from remote locations. As waves of infection ebb and flow, it seems clear that more companies will allow more of their staff to work from home as a part of the “new normal”. Under these circumstances, it becomes imperative to take charge of the company’s assets – both on-premise and remote.
Asset management is important because it helps a company control its assets systematically. It provides transparent visibility into what the company owns, where those assets are spread, their usage, and their current status. This intelligence can drive more careful decisions about resource augmentation, provisioning, and maintenance. But in the extended and remote workplace, from ensuring data security to easy deployment and management of assets like desktops, keyboards, and printers, asset management is now a bigger challenge for companies than ever before.
With more than 43% of professionals still using manual spreadsheets to track assets, there’s a clear need for accurate asset tracking in the complex hybrid workplace.
Wondering what businesses can do to optimize workflows, manage, distribute, and organize assets from a remote location? Let us look at how you can manage distributed assets remotely.
How Companies Can Manage Distributed Assets
How can companies manage distributed assets for their remote enterprises? Here is a look at 6 effective ways:
1) Formalize asset distribution and recovery process
With more companies in the “remote working” mode, asset management is necessary to keep a record of business assets. The use of applications like Google Docs and spreadsheets to record details of employee devices like laptops and mobile phones when leaving the office has its share of challenges.
For instance, imagine a situation where a remote-working employee leaves the employment. How do you plan to recover the assets especially when they are in a remote location? Can you seamlessly transfer the assets to another employee in a nearby region?
To answer these questions, you need end-to-end IT asset management solutions that store all asset-related information on a centralized location and provide consolidated intelligence. This allows facility managers to manage asset documentation or search from any part of the world.
2) Consolidate and automate all assets
When it comes to providing remote support to your employees, consolidation of all IT assets becomes a key enabler. With all the asset information under one system, it becomes easier to visualize the life cycle of your company’s IT infrastructure to plan new purchases, decide maintenance strategies, and track and manage software licenses.
Imagine a scenario where a “work from home” employee needs to install a particular application or tool on their PC. It could become hard for the employee to provide information about the configuration and other details of their machine to the IT support team. By linking the support helpdesk to an efficient asset management tool, the support team can monitor all relevant details like whether the employee is using the correct and active software licenses, thus helping them provide a more specific and workable solution.
3) Ensure employee safety
Among the biggest challenges, companies allowing remote work need to ensure the safety of both their employees and devices. Since everyone is distributed across geographical locations, facilities managers need to take certain steps to manage security in a remote work environment. The first challenge is knowing exactly what devices are being used out in the extended workplace. A good asset management solution will help provide exactly that information and help drive more concerted device management strategies. That apart, here are a few security-linked best practices to follow:
- Mandatory Single sign-on (SSO) and two-factor authentication across all the SaaS applications to protect login pages and block unauthorized access.
- Business metrics like device health, attack frequency, and average time to upgrade, monitor how well the staff is adhering to the company’s information security policies while working from home.
- Location tracking of devices using third-party tools, which will prepare for any untoward incident like compromised or lost devices.
- Employee training on device security and how they can protect sensitive information by avoiding risky practices like not locking their computers (when not in use) or storing passwords on browsers.
4) Efficient and quick distribution of assets
Companies working remotely face the challenge of distributing business tools and assets and making them accessible to remote employees across various business functions including marketing & sales, customer servicing, finance, and product development. This is especially a challenge when companies need to onboard new employees. Depending on their role, they may need access to specific tools apart from being provided standard infrastructure like laptops and other IT equipment.
By providing an updated view of the state and availability of assets across the remote workplace, it enables more optimized decisions. The IT and facility team can take decisions like are more assets of a specific type required? Is it possible to repair or refurbish assets held somewhere else in the field? Are specific assets being held unproductively somewhere and, if so, can they be moved? A great asset management platform ensures that such distribution of assets can be done efficiently.
Even after the pandemic is over and more employees return to work, many companies are likely to continue to allow their employees to work from remote workplaces. No matter what the post-pandemic environment, it’s time for organizations to see how they can manage distributed assets using technology while ensuring the safety of their employees and business data.
Struggling to implement the best-distributed asset strategy for your organization? Asset management is all about using the right tools and processes. With a proven and robust solution for asset and facilities management, SeQure can help you organize all asset-related information at a centralized location and help you devise the best strategy. Want to know more? Contact us with your queries right away.