Gaining better insight into the cost of IT

Asset management capabilities coupled with cost tracking tools help high-tech leaders better manage the cost of IT.

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Enterprise Management Associates examines Digital Fuel’s IT cost management capabilities as the recession forces enterprise IT groups to re-evaluate how they deliver services to the business.

Enterprise IT managers today are forced to more closely examine how well they deliver IT services the business within tight budget constraints. That’s why industry watchers say high-tech leaders need to adopt IT cost management practices that would uncover the true cost of IT.

How to cut IT costs without hemorrhaging

Enterprise Management Associates (EMA) recently examined how well IT service management vendor Digital Fuel delivered products that not only tracked IT services, but also enabled enterprise IT managers to understand the cost of deliver those services. According to EMA, there is a greater need for financial transparency into IT and Digital Fuel is among the vendors – including Apptio and HP -- offering IT financial management capabilities. 

“Digital Fuel offers two distinctive solutions each with service portfolio management capabilities included: one solution for IT cost management and one for service quality management,” the EMA report “Deliver IT cost visibility with Digital Fuel” reads. “Each of these solutions stands on its own to meeting pressing corporate priorities. Yet, they are integrated and work together demonstrating Digital Fuel’s vision to bring together cost, quality and service management into a cohesive management strategy.”

The vendor’s IT cost management products offer customers capabilities such as early warning notifications that alert IT managers when trending is straying from the planned IT budget. The software also allows IT managers to model and allocate cost pools across cost centers and business units, and proactively track and drill down into overall costs for specific IT services, such as infrastructure, application licenses and IT labor costs. Digital Fuel also enables its users to prepare chargeback statements for IT service charges by consumption, allowing charges to be broken down by several factors such as business unit, geography and/or top spenders.

“While technology-level management and analytics no doubt it still a requirement, new solutions are needed to help IT manage the business-related disciplines of IT,” according to EMA. Management vendors across the board -- including BMC, CA, EMC, IBM and others -- are now realizing the need to address IT financial transparency needs and deliver products that can automate the process of tracking costs associated with services, the report suggests. Yet, “Digital Fuel has the advantage of starting early and investing aggressively in the area of cost management,” the report reads.

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