This week, we’re going to focus on the last of the three key areas of an ROI for an Asset Management Solution (AMS) – Ease of Use. We’ve talked about the importance of data – and of course, the money. But let’s face it, if it isn’t easy to use – or used properly – your data will definitely suffer and that’s typically the main reason why an AMS was implemented in the first place.
The User has the power to make or break the success of your solution. Many Users resist change and have preconceived notions as to what a new system can bring – “it’s going to be hard to use”, “it will be more work for me”, “the way I’ve been doing this is fine”. If you’ve brought in a new solution or process before – I’m sure you’ve heard it all.
Knowing that you may have a resistant User base, you need to be confident that whatever AMS you bring in will not only be something that is intuitive for the User to operate, but also makes their job easier. In the world of GUI interfaces, multiple data points and immediate response, what does Ease of Use mean for an AMS? A strong AMS should at least be able to give a positive response to these questions:
- Does it Automate the Capture? – Scan an Asset Tag (Barcode or RFID) o Scanning eliminates paper inventory rosters and manual data entry into PeopleSoft screens
- Ease of capture minimizes time required by staff (your full inventory may actually get done this year!)
- Does it have an Intuitive Interface? – Easy for the User to Know What to Do Next
- Eliminates repeat/extensive training – Since inventory activities are usually done periodically and not daily – you don’t want to spend time on training/review every time an inventory comes up on the schedule
- Straightforward interface means less User Support for your Admin staff
- Can it Easily Deal with Untagged Assets – or Assets that Need Retagging?
- Adding or correcting Asset tags and identifiers during the course of the inventory ensures that the information captured about that asset – now and in the future – is accurate
- Easy steps to tag/retag ensure that the Asset issue can be addressed without derailing the overall inventory activity
- Can the Asset Profile be Updated On-the-Fly?
- The ability to easily add details or correct information about the asset (condition, serial number, etc.) while the User is in front of it will ensure a more accurate inventory
- Can I Get to My Systems?
- The less the User needs to write or key, the more quickly they’re finished with their task – and you have your data. The ability to seamlessly scan the inventory, dock and then have your AMS automatically communicate directly into your systems should be a must for any AMS
Users conducting the inventory aren’t the only ones who use an AMS. The system owners, typically IT, need to ensure that the addition of an AMS to their system stable isn’t going require significant time and maintenance from their resources. So to take Ease of Use a step further – be sure to look at Ease of Ownership. What will the solution require for your network? Does it require specialty equipment? Does it interface directly with PeopleSoft – or do I have to come up with a hand-off process? Making sure the experience of the User – as well as the Administrators who support them – is a good one will go a long way to ensuring a great return on your AMS investment.
We’ve covered a lot of information about ROI factors over these last few weeks. Many people may believe that an Asset Management System may be a solution where the need is questionable. However, how many systems can you think of that will not only pay for themselves with the first inventory activity – but will also continue to save your organization time and significant amounts of money for years to come. That is the return that you should be receiving with your AMS. As you review solution options for your team, make sure that the Data, Financial and User returns are optimal. Because if any of these are lacking – you should definitely keep looking.
HL Group’s Asset Advantage PLUS is the foremost Asset Management Solution for PeopleSoft AM. Asset Advantage PLUS, coupled with our proven experience and comprehensive implementation methodology allows us to deliver quality Asset Management solutions quickly, on-time and within budget. Find out more about Asset Advantage PLUS and HL Group by contacting us at firstname.lastname@example.org.