When it comes to IT asset discovery, a snapshot won’t suffice

  • IT Management
  • Solutions
  • 2021
  • Adam Smith-Cairns
August 26, 2021

IT asset discovery: Two male workers hover over their laptops.

How clear, complete, and colorful is your IT asset data? Is it like the picture below, where you see only a small portion of the bigger picture to answer important questions about your IT estate? Without color, you’re missing even more context. You need better IT asset discovery.

Francis Duffy marker in black and white


Having a snapshot provides a limited view. It lacks context and is like managing your IT assets in silos. It’s cumbersome, inefficient, and ineffective. When you can’t see the bigger picture, you don’t know what you have or how much it’s costing you—or what’s at risk by failing to track licenses. But will a bigger picture alone suffice?

The big picture in living color

To answer that question, let’s look at the bigger picture below of the snapshot from above. You now have a better idea of what the smaller area is part of.

A bigger picture of the first image in black and white


Sure, it provides more context and covers a broader area, but it isn’t necessarily a better picture, is it? It’s still like having siloed data. You have more information about one area of your business, but you don’t know how it fits together with other areas.

If we wanted to use color data to reproduce this photograph in print, we could look at the four colors: cyan, magenta, yellow, and black.

The bigger picture broken up by color:  cyan, magenta, yellow, and black


That’s still not great. Even though you have all the data you need in multiple systems, it’s hard to envision what the full-color picture looks like. Let’s say each of these colors represents a different set of asset data for software, hardware, cloud resources, and outside data that provides more definition. All the data is there—but we can’t see the bigger and better picture yet.

To discover your assets, workflow it

How long would it take you to manually assemble all these colors into one accurate picture? With a rudimentary application, multiple steps would be required to align all the colors perfectly. It’s like trying to create your asset picture from data in different formats or normalizing and aligning the data on a similar data model.

With the latest computers, digital printers, and creative workflows, it doesn’t take more than mere seconds or minutes to produce the full-color picture as a photograph, poster, printed page, etc. When we see the entire picture in accurate color, it has a greater impact. We realize it’s one of the most famous street intersections in the world: Times Square in New York City.

The entire picture in accurate color: Times Square, New York  City


Literally and figuratively, the advancements in printing and color rendering are a testament to the power of workflows. And that’s what we want to do with our visibility into technology assets. Let’s workflow the asset discovery process.

Learn more in our white paper that explores the kind of data you need to see all your software, hardware, and cloud-based assets—as well as cloud resources that are often considered assets. You’ll gain a greater understanding of why asset discovery is so important and learn data discovery strategies. 

Then, you can take that bigger and better asset picture and create workflows that help deliver immediate savings, improve efficiencies, and reduce risk.

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