Appreciating Assets

By Brian P. Watson  |  Posted 2007-02-28 Print this article Print

Tracking hardware and software assets is no easy task. Add software deployment and help-desk automation, and the challenge grows. Asset management software can do it all—and more.

Appreciating Assets

Gartner projects the worldwide market for asset management tools to reach $358.9 million once the 2006 figures are tabulated; the firm expects that number to jump 17% this year to $418.7 million and another 15% in 2008 to $480.7 million. CA, Hewlett-Packard, BMC and Altiris rank among the biggest players in the asset management arena.

Another emerging player is Novell, which acquired asset management vendor Tally Systems in 2005 to boost its existing configuration management software suite, ZENWorks. Last year, Brad Myrvold, desktop technology manager with Allina Hospitals and Clinics, a Minneapolis health-care network, installed the ZENWorks Asset Management application to manage hardware and software leases.

Novell plans to incorporate the Tally tools into the ZENWorks platform later this year. Myrvold says he's looking forward to seeing the results. And if they're anything like the ones he's seen from more than five years of using ZENWorks, he's sure to be pleased.

At first, Myrvold used ZENWorks for data migration and software deployment. Allina had been using other Novell products, like the NetWare operating system, but Myrvold says he didn't know much about ZENWorks. "At the time, ZEN didn't have much market share or public awareness," he says.

But ZENWorks delivered for him on two software deployments. In 2002, he and his team deployed 650 applications to 6,800 computers and devices using ZENWorks. And they saw an immediate result: Calls to the help desk for repairs dropped by half, from 20,000 to 10,000, in a month.

The next year, Allina migrated 13,500 computers from the Microsoft Windows NT platform to Windows XP. Again, Myrvold and his team saw help-desk calls drop, this time by 40%, he says, though he didn't specify the number of calls.

Associate Editor

Brian joined Baseline in March 2006. In addition to previous stints at Inter@ctive Week and The Net Economy, he's written for The News-Press in Fort Myers, Fla., as well as The Sunday Tribune in Dublin, Ireland. Brian has a B.A. from Bucknell University and a master's degree from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism.


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