Large-scale IT organizations purchase software licenses, hardware IT assets, and network services from different vendors, often leading to extensive vendor portfolios.
Each vendor also comes with its own purchasing and compliance terms, onboarding and sales processes, cost structures, and contract agreements. Dedicated ITAM software can consolidate your vendors on a single platform, help you stay compliant, and bolster valuable vendor relationships.
Why do you need IT vendor management?
Procuring IT assets on a regular basis means dealing with procurement processes across numerous vendors, manually creating purchase orders, disparate software licensing agreements, and managing overheads related to employee IT purchasing.
Without a proper IT vendor management strategy, you risk low visibility into your IT assets — their utilization and lifecycle.
Below, we mention some risks of poor IT vendor management:
1. Compromised security
If you do not have an authorized list of software and hardware vendors for your organization, it can result in rogue IT assets being purchased by your employees.
Your IT team doesn’t get a chance to vet IT vendors beforehand. It is possible that their privacy and security policies may not be suitable for your business and they may have application vulnerabilities.
Procuring and utilizing such software and hardware devices can compromise your organization’s endpoint security and lead to malware and other cyber threats.
2. Failed vendor audits
A robust IT asset management solution allows you to accurately track the number of licenses your organization has. It monitors your asset usage and helps to prepare you for external audits.
If you are not tracking your software and hardware assets properly, it can lead to non-compliance and inaccurate utilization data, which can eventually lead to failed vendor audits and hefty legal fines.
3. Inefficient procurement process
Without an integrated ITSM and ITAM infrastructure, you will be dealing with a lot of cumbersome manual processes which are prone to confusion and human error.
Consider the painstakingly long process of creating manual purchase orders, and pushing manual tickets and new device requests, etc. Furthermore, lack of an ITAM solution means that you have siloed and inaccurate asset data which makes purchasing decisions and the procurement processes inefficient.
4. Increased overhead costs
According to Gartner, vendor management leaders have not only paid software fees for unused software but also continue to pay 20% to 22% annual maintenance on them — with 93% of companies still spending on some of their underused software products.
The problem with siloed data tools is that they don’t give you comprehensive information on IT utilization and the projected need for IT assets. Eventually, this results in overbuying or underbuying software licenses, missing out on renewals, and non-compliance.
How does AssetSonar help with IT vendor management?
AssetSonar’s tracking features assist IT vendor management in several ways.
1. Purchase orders
AssetSonar helps you get rid of manual approvals with an extensive Purchase Order module. Depending on your user access controls, you can create and push purchase orders for procurement or you can make a request (requisition) for a new purchase.
Offering in-built templates for different types of purchases, AssetSonar makes it easy for you to push a request and order new technology items. Furthermore, you can also check up on the item status to have an idea of its availability and to ensure that all relevant payments have been made.
Having the vendor details already available in the system saves you time, process redundancy, and the risk of manual errors while creating a new purchase order.
2. Vendor compliance
Every software and hardware vendor comes with its own unique terms and rules. As your organization buys from numerous vendors, it becomes increasingly tedious to comply with different vendor terms manually.
An ITAM tool allows you to save all vendor compliance details on a centralized platform and sends you alerts and notifications whenever you’re not being compliant.
3. Vendor trends
The data in your ITAM tool helps you create custom reports through which you can easily identify procurement trends and make informed purchasing decisions.
Extract information on trends such as which hardware assets are utilized more than others, which vendor is selling devices that need extensive servicing, and so on. This helps you optimize the usage of your assets and switch IT vendors based on utilization trends.
4. Vendor audits
To ensure compliance and proper utilization of their sold assets, many IT vendors conduct external audits. Your business should always be prepared for that.
Vendor audits require you to gather accurate information on transactions and asset usage throughout the organization so that risk analysis, benefits, and potential cost savings per vendor can be calculated.
Having updated vendor and asset information tracked in AssetSonar helps you successfully clear your audit.
5. Alerts and notifications
As your inventory of IT assets grows, it is easy to lose track of their expiries, renewals, and pending payments, etc. With AssetSonar’s notifications feature, you can set alerts for different vendor milestones.
This helps you cultivate strong vendor partnerships while ensuring the availability of needed IT assets at all times. You can set alerts for whenever there is low-order asset stock at any location or whenever there is an upcoming software license expiry or renewal.
6. Warranties and contract management
Not tracking your IT assets through an ITAM tool may result in missing out on license expiry dates, lack of control over software assets, and missing contracts.
AssetSonar allows you to attach electronic records of your vendor contracts with every IT asset so you can stay compliant with its clauses and have information on hardware asset warranties. This also helps you to keep an automatic trail of an IT asset’s warranty, lifecycle, usage details, and more.
Read more: Purchase Order Management in AssetSonar
AssetSonar is the leading hardware asset management software that supports multiple IT asset discovery sources to ensure a seamless, centralized IT asset management experience. Sign up today for a free 15-day trial.