Asset Management: Proliferation of Devices Presents Challenges to IT
As you can tell just by looking around, electronic devices such as smartphones and tablets have proliferated nearly to the point of ubiquity. Mass production has hammered down price points, making devices accessible to all levels of society and moving them from luxury items to must-have electronics.
From an industry perspective, the proliferation of devices is obviously a boon. However, the rapidity at which device proliferation has occurred has caught many IT companies a bit flat-footed. Policy-makers, procurement managers, and IT directors are all trying to keep up with how their organizations can keep pace with the “Device Culture”.
Two areas that are particularly affected are Asset Management and Security Access. In today’s article, we’ll describe how Crow Canyon’s NITRO™-powered solutions can bridge the gap between your current situation and an efficiently run, device-aware infrastructure.
What’s Going On With All These Devices?
Before making any attempt at addressing a device-focused company policy, you need to be able to answer a simple question: “What’s going on?” Or, specifically, “What’s going on with my company’s devices?”
Simple indeed, but this is a question that can stop many IT managers in their tracks. If your company offers devices to your employees, then do you know who is using the device? Is it under warranty? Does it require upgrading? When was it last serviced? How many are currently deployed and how many do you have remaining in-stock? What is its history?
Becoming part of the Device Culture means that the proper infrastructure needs to be in-place — your company needs to have an awareness of its assets in real-time. This is where Crow Canyon comes into play.
Gain Control of Your Devices
Crow Canyon’s Asset Management for SharePoint and Office 365 empowers your company to gain control of its devices by providing you with real-time visibility, detailed asset information, and a running record of who has what devices and which ones are in inventory or on order. The program seamlessly integrates with your Microsoft SharePoint or Office 365 environment.
Key benefits of the Asset Management program include:
- Asset/Device Data: View summary and detailed information about your devices in an intuitive, easy-to-use dashboard interface. The Asset Manager provides valuable real-time data, such as who the current owner is, the device’s current status, and check-in/out data (know who is using the asset, how long they need it, and when it will be returned).
- Alerts & Notifications: The Asset Manager, like all Crow Canyon solutions, is highly configurable. Nearly all features can be customized according to your business needs. This is also true for our alerts & notification system, which can let you know immediately when key events occur, such as a change in device status or an outstanding support-related issue.
- Maintenance Data: View details about each device’s maintenance history, such as work performed, its cost, related documents (e.g., warranties), and procurement information. You can also set up recurring maintenance tasks and schedules to track repairs and routine service.
- Financial: The Asset Manager integrates with several of our other products, including the Procurement & Purchasing platform. This solution facilitates the financial tasks associated with the intake of new assets.
- Reporting & Analysis: All Crow Canyon solutions include reporting & analysis capabilities, such as visual displays of asset status, usage, and maintenance needs. Reporting is also highly configurable, enabling you to build-out your own reports as needed.
The Device Culture is all about flexibility — owning multiple assets, re-purposing their intended uses and, of course, genuine mobility regardless of location. The old-school walls have been knocked down, to be replaced with blurred lines that don’t delineate “dedicated devices.” This may bring accessibility to users, but it can be a headache to IT Security personnel whose main concern is to not compromise the corporate network.
Our Security Access Request application is designed to alleviate these concerns by safeguarding your devices with a powerful access request system. Users require access in order to use corporate devices… and this is the chokepoint at which the Security Access Request platform works its magic. The system provides an efficient way to track, respond to, audit, and report on who has access to what. It keeps your organization in line with internal security policies as well as those of regulatory agencies.
With the system in place, users can formally request security clearance to access a device, via multiple channels, such as e-mail, SharePoint, telephone, or Outlook. Requests are automatically converted into tickets which are then automatically routed for approval — the routing process, like all aspects of our products, is 100% configurable. Role-based access templates—also customizable—help you to determine what kind of access is granted to employees.
Configurable workflows guide service requests through the system, from initial request to approval and any steps in-between (e.g., pending status, review status). You are in complete control of how your employees are granted access to your company’s devices.
All access requests are meticulously tracked and recorded in the Security Access Request Manager; this is particularly useful for auditing, reporting, and analytical review. Visualizations help you to determine how efficient your teams are at managing, granting, and responding to security access requests.
In addition to device security, a principal benefit of the Security Access Request platform is that it lets you know when access needs to be changed. For example, employees quit, receive promotions, undergo onboarding, and experience midboarding (a change in job or position that requires security access adjustment). All of these are trigger events that require a re-analysis of user access.
While there’s no magic pill that can fix all of your device headaches, there are realistic solutions that are affordable, customizable, and have the capability to leverage existing infrastructure. The Asset Management and Security Access Request systems are both no-code products that integrate seamlessly with your current SharePoint and/or Office 365 environments. As such, they effectively transform your Microsoft solutions into true business productivity platforms.
Would you like to learn about how you can effectively deal with the challenges of today’s Device Culture? Let’s talk. Give us a call at 1-888-706-0070 or contact us by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
Crow Canyon Systems has 18 years of experience assisting organizations in leveraging their existing infrastructure, rather than requiring new hardware & technologies. We specialize in building upon your collaboration platforms, such as SharePoint and Office 365, in order to give your Help Desk and Support Staff the tools they need to provide assistance without the need for additional infrastructure.