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Setting Goals & Milestones in ITAM Projects

As part of my ongoing work with the IEC I have been lucky enough to participate in some of member discussions around ITAM. We have discussed the pain points in their ITAM strategies, what organizations are doing to address their problems and finding out what the best companies do.

One of the recurring themes is the concept of setting appropriate goals and measuring progress with appropriate milestones. Many organizations are attempting to improve their asset management process with an unclear view of where they currently stand and multiple ideas and objectives for where they are heading.

When it comes to goals I’m a big fan of the down to earth advice of David Allen. The two pillars that provide the foundation for his methodology are establishing the ideal outcome and then figuring out the next action to get there.

This all sounds very simple, perhaps too simple for global enterprise projects, but I believe many organizations would be making much more progress if they defined the outcome of their ITAM projects.

For example many organizations are working towards “Software Compliance” as a worthy goal which is recognized at board level. Perhaps these companies have been stung by a time consuming, embarrassing and costly vendor audit. They don’t want it to happen again but how will they know when it is resolved? How will they measure success? It is a given that no company can maintain 100% compliance at all times – so what is an acceptable level of variance?

Here are some examples of tangible performance indicators that might help measure success:

  • The time to provide reports in the event of a vendor audit
  • The existence, with an acceptable degree of variance, of a regular compliance report
  • Cost savings per annum as a result of removing unused software
  • Cost savings per annum negotiated as a result of better data with regards to software agreements
  • Software cost per head
  • Support calls on applications reduced due to standardization
  • Time from software request to software delivery due to streamlined processes
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How should we measure success?

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About Martin Thompson

Martin is owner and founder of The ITAM Review, an online resource and community for worldwide ITAM professionals.

Martin is also author of the book "Practical ITAM - The essential guide for IT Asset Managers", a book that describes how to get started and make a difference in the field of IT Asset Management.

On a voluntary basis Martin is a contributor to ISO WG21 which develops the ITAM International Standard ISO/IEC 19770.

Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter or LinkedIn.

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