I recently studied the Gartner report titled Redefining IT Asset Management for the Digital Age by analysts Victoria Barber and Roger Williams published March 30, 2017. The report is available for download here.

The authors define what a technology asset is—and what IT asset management (ITAM) is:

“A technology asset is any digital technology that generates business value through the processes it supports by virtue of the information it contains or provides access to. At a high level, the definition of ITAM is very straightforward. The following is Gartner’s simplified definition:

IT asset management (ITAM) provides an accurate account of technology asset life cycle costs and risks to maximize the business value of technology strategy, architecture, funding, contractual and sourcing decisions.”

Barber and Williams then follow up the definitions with a statement that has particular stopping power:

“This simplification was necessary because the detail and specificity of existing definitions were constraining ITAM. ITAM that manages only ‘capitalized hardware and software’ no longer makes business sense in a world of virtualization, cloud and IoT. Self-constraining traditional approaches are too narrowly focused to support business needs in an increasingly complex and constantly changing world.”

I latched onto the phrase “in a world of virtualization,” perhaps because it was just this past May that Ivanti unveiled License Optimizer for Servers that takes Software Asset Management (SAM) into the data center.

The truth is, increasingly complex data center environments compound an organization’s spending on software assets. License Optimizer for Servers provides enhanced visibility into the data center. This transparency penetrates layers of virtualization and clustering to enable proper reconciliation and optimized software spend.

You can learn more about License Optimizer for Servers here.

Here’s a quick overview of its capabilities:

Discover Data Center Assets – The solution automates the discovery of on-premise hybrid cloud virtualization environments, including VMware, Hyper-V, Oracle VM, and IBM Power Virtualization.

Achieve Vendor-Specific Visibility – IT departments can uncover high-value infrastructure software assets from vendors like Oracle, Microsoft and IBM. The technology performs deep, agentless scans of Microsoft products, including SQL server instances, Active Directory, and SharePoint Servers. The solution also scans for IBM products like DB2, DataStage, and WebSphere, among others, without impacting network performance or overhead.

Realize Asset Dependencies – Customers can better understand their assets and the relationships between applications, databases, virtualization, clusters, and storage. The solution also clarifies which processes are running on servers versus ports, which can help teams more easily identify where problems are stemming from and reduce fix and recovery times.

Simplify the Toolset –  Approximately 50 percent of organizations have 12 or more discovery tools, and 11 percent have more than 30. By offering an integrated solution, License Optimizer for Servers reduces the number of tools required to serve multiple-data use cases and vendors.

Save Time and Resources – Now users can perform discovery with little effort—even in large multi-site data centers with agentless scans across Linux, Unix, and Windows servers. The solution automates the discovery of license versions, editions, installations and usage, and reduces performance impact on the environment—with no need to install additional agents.

Minimize Audit Impact – License Optimizer for Servers takes the guesswork out of asset management by providing verifiably accurate and up-to-date discovery data at any given moment. It encourages a proactive approach to SAM and helps mitigate the risk of vendor audits, which can result in huge penalties.