4.5 Resource and Asset Management

Business technology operations require financial and human resources as well as software, hardware and data assets. The use of financial resources has been defined in chapter 4.4 Financial planning and control and this chapter focuses on human resources and assets, which consume approximately 20-40% of the total costs of business technology. The rest is spent on services and tendency is to purchase resources (work) and assets (hardware and software) more as a service rather than individually or separately.

Resource and asset management has four major activity topics: forecast the demand, build the capacity, fulfil the demand and optimise.

Forecast the demand

  • Make on inventory of current utilisation of resources and assets
  • Forecast the demand by estimating the changes (delta) to the current use of resources and assets.

Build the capacity

  • Prepare commercial and capacity readiness to acquire the required resources and assets
  • Organise an efficient onboarding process to ensure compliance with policies, instructions and practices
  • Predefine the standard / normal resources and assets available for the order.

Fulfil the demand

  • Implement an order process to manage and authorise resource and asset requests
  • Purchase resources and assets on demand and allocate related costs to the requestor
  • Ensure proper and efficient use of resources and assets
  • Collect feedback and quality information and submit changes if necessary
  • Free capacity of unused resources and assets and secure knowledge transfer.

Optimise

  • Make a gap analysis against demand and strategy regularly to find resources and assets with low usage or low business value
  • Consolidate resource and asset acquisition under major frame agreements with volume benefits and joint values
  • Communicate resource and assets needs and coach suppliers to be prepared with the changing needs
  • Minimise the need to report daily on-going matters.

 

Resource management

The Business Technology Standard recommends that standard and normal resources and assets are predefined and made available in an order catalogue.

Standard resource or asset request does not require any purchasing, or the purchasing does not require any approval. An example of a standard asset request is a subscription of a software where an organisation has agreed the enterprise quota. Normal resource or asset requests require an approval but are based on the existing commercial frame agreement and require no commercial negotiation.

An example of a normal resource request is an order for a project manager from the preferred supplier. The proposed project manager must be qualified by the requester but as the prices and other terms are predefined, the automated workflow process takes care of approvals and workorder.

The aim is to move from managing repetitive negotiations to faster on-boarding and thus increased speed and faster benefits consumption.

 

Figure 4.5.1 Resource management

 

Moving from individual resources to functional teams

Digitalisation is setting high expectation for speed and agility. The trend in resource management is therefore moving from hiring individual resources towards hiring full functioning teams trained to work together and according to the best practices defined by the organisation. Teams can be sourced either as a service with full delivery on the service promise as outcome or, as a resource in which case the purchasing organisation remains responsible for guiding and leading the work.

A practical example of sourcing a team can be digital office as illustrated below. A fully-functioning digital office could have the following roles as a service:

  • DEV lead to run and facilitate the development process
  • Solution expert that understands the organisation’s enterprise architecture and knows well the functionality of modern business platforms
  • DEV expert of user experience to plan the user interface and user experience by using service design
  • OPS expert with experience in planning service readiness for new solutions.

Organisation’s own key people such as CDO and business analyst can then complement this kind of functional team to give a boost to development of new digital services.

Figure 4.5.2 Digital office