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How technology management is changing in a hybrid world

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The ongoing pandemic has prompted organizations to move to a more flexible and hybrid work environment. Adopting a hybrid work model creates an inevitable challenge for IT departments to manage their technology assets. Historically, in the pre-pandemic lifestyle, legacy assets were categorized as on-premises data center servers, desktop PCs, network equipment, and other traditional hardware found in offices. As employees work less from the office and more from home and other remote locations, there is an increasing reliance on cloud, SaaS, and virtual resources. This means that the traditional definition of technology assets must evolve to include a full range of technologies previously unthinkable from an IT perspective, such as personal devices used by the enterprise.

IT Asset Management (ITAM) is a set of processes used to manage IT assets across an organization’s various business lines. As the concept of technology management expands, so do the visibility and security issues associated with it. In today’s scenario, an organization’s IT management infrastructure is responsible for managing various assets such as hardware (ITAM), software (software asset management or SAM), SaaS and cloud (infrastructure and SaaS management tools), and mobile devices. Determined by the tools and processes used. (Mobile Device Management or MDM), and IoT (Internet of Things). Traditionally, companies have used a compartmentalized approach to manage these disparate technology stacks. This often involves using legacy systems that are inefficient for individual needs and ultimately difficult to upgrade when new versions become available.

In addition, the rapidly evolving and expanding IT infrastructure that must track, manage, and protect all the rapidly expanding network-enabled devices in various sectors such as healthcare, transportation, manufacturing, and education. has become part. IT asset managers have never worked in environments managing so many types, speeds, and sizes of assets. And it’s not easy.

With more technology to manage and more employees working from traditional office locations, cloud and SaaS adoption is also accelerating. However, it is expected that IT departments will continue to need to be able to provide the same level of infrastructure support previously provided in office environments. This inherently makes IT’s job exponentially more difficult and, more importantly, greatly expands the potential attack surface.

The risks associated with hybrid frameworks are wide-ranging, with infrastructure management, security, compliance, and productivity being the most significant threats.

infrastructure vulnerabilities

As mentioned earlier, the basic definition of IT Asset Management is changing as more organizations embrace remote work. Before the pandemic forced employees to work from home or elsewhere, IT managed on-premises software behind secure firewalls. Under these circumstances, IT infrastructure analysis has become much more predictable and manageable. In a hybrid environment, there is a significant shift in the overall paradigm, moving away from a return to outdated and previously established IT structures and operational processes.

security complexity

Second, security is a major concern for enterprises in a hybrid work approach. The ability for anyone to work from anywhere in the world means that the potential attack surface has increased significantly. Additionally, a home or coffee shop network access point is less secure than an office connection that is protected behind a firewall. Most residential and small business Wi-Fi networks lack enterprise-level security measures, and in some cases no security measures at all, leaving them open to dangerous attacks.

Compliance challenges

The compliance challenges posed by mixed work styles should be assessed by both organizations and employees. Like many aspects of IT technology management, compliance laws are complex, ever-changing, and continually costly. Most of the compliance concerns are caused by auditor analysis and large fines. To avoid hefty fines and to answer essential questions about your technology assets, such as who owns what and where, and the exact security status of those assets, you need the elements to easily find this information. .

Many companies with existing legacy IT asset management systems lack a holistic view of their entire technology portfolio, making compliance difficult and sometimes impossible when employees are working remotely. is. However, enterprise technology management (ETM) provides comprehensive visibility and reduces the likelihood of compliance issues surfacing.

productivity concerns

Finally, a fourth danger associated with hybrid work environments is lost productivity due to the inability to support remote assets and the lack of easy access to the tools needed to get the job done. Before the pandemic, cross-functional processes such as employee onboarding and offboarding were difficult from a technology perspective. In the current work-from-home (WFH) model, that challenge has suddenly become much more difficult. Having the right technology infrastructure that is supported, managed, and secured is essential to employee productivity, but with everyone’s free movement of assets, this is becoming increasingly complex. In general, hybrid IT can be a great strategic enabler. However, a different approach is needed for how technology is managed within the business.

ETM is the future of IT

To minimize infrastructure, security, compliance and production risks in remote or hybrid environments, companies should look to Enterprise Technology Management or ETM. Despite all the challenges IT faces today, adopting an ETM removes most of the complexity. The ultimate goal of the enterprise IT model is to focus everything on the users and the systems and assets they use. However, organizations have traditionally focused technology management on assets within offices and data centers. This method of managing technology falls short in an evolving hybrid world and fails to address the security, compliance, and productivity challenges posed by today’s work dynamics.

ETM provides a single, integrated, real-time source of truth. It makes it easy for organizations to integrate, breathe, and fully lifecycle manage all their assets, from desktops to data centers to the cloud. ETM is technology-agnostic and its adoption allows for easy integration with existing systems, resulting in faster deployment and faster time to value. In addition, security is inherently enhanced by monitoring and tracking all IT assets to uncover potential security blind spots created by the increased attack surface.

As shown throughout, existing technical management systems were developed and designed for a work environment that is very different from that currently used by companies of all sizes. With today’s steadily growing adoption of cloud-based systems, the way IT manages all assets must start migrating to modern applications. ETM helps us embrace this new hybrid world.

About the author: Arthur Lozinski is CEO and co-founder of Oomnitza, a leading provider of Enterprise Technology Management (ETM) solutions. In 2011 he joined Arthur He joined Trent Seed and Ramin Ettehad to provide solutions that address how companies manage and protect their technology assets. Arthur focuses on expanding the company’s reach and spreading ETM. Secured $35 million in 2021 to fulfill its mission of providing a single source of truth for managing technology across hundreds of companies, from the fastest growing startups to the Fortune 500 successfully led a funding round to Giant.