Modernizing enterprise asset management
Accenture creates a single solution to manage hardware, software and office assets with a new asset management capability on the ServiceNow platform
Accenture’s IT strategy is to be platform powered and cloud based. Among these platforms is ServiceNow, used for enterprise-wide service management in a variety of business areas, including IT service management (ITSM), IT Operations Management (ITOM) and more than 1,200 enterprise services.
In the area of enterprise asset management (EAM), teams across Accenture were using a variety of solutions and processes and much of the work was manual and time consuming. The information captured and tracked was inconsistent between teams and geographies. The situation called for a modern solution. As our global IT organization continually learns about the capabilities of the ServiceNow platform, we recognized that the ServiceNow IT Asset Management solution held the potential to bring business value. As a result, we partnered with the company as members of its asset management design partnership and product advisory council to influence the road map of the solution.
Our objective was to launch a program to create a single solution to manage assets across Accenture, establish standardized processes, centralize asset management for IT and non-IT assets, and facilitate consistent accounting and end-to-end management of assets. We could then retire the disparate range of solutions that teams were using across the company to dramatically reduce manual efforts and reduce our audit risk.
Accenture Enterprise Asset Management program overview
Asset management process reengineering and software implementation: hardware, software and non-IT
Estimated number of assets for migration
Estimated asset value
Number of Accenture users
Our global IT team, an Intelligent Asset Management team with EAM expertise and process design skills, and various business stakeholders collaborated to shape a program. Our combined project team needed to address an environment of disparate solutions and processes in order to migrate asset information to the ServiceNow Asset Management solution. The goal was to have consistent global processes across Accenture and a capability to track assets from end to end with a single enterprise solution.
Getting to this end state would require three phases of effort over a three-year period: establishing a foundational capability, deploying targeted geographies, and evolving the enterprise asset management (EAM) solution.
Establishing the foundation was centered around rationalizing processes, data and establishing core integrations. Our project team migrated an initial 800,000 assets from disparate tools to the ServiceNow platform. This number is projected to reach 8 million by the end of year three. We rationalized data and implemented system controls to drive standardization and data integrity across asset information. Data governance controls and legal compliance guidelines were automated. Global ownership of data governance was established as well.
In addition, our team built integrations with ServiceNow and core platforms to drive automation with SAP Ariba (for asset procurement) and a single global SAP system instance (for financial data). These connections help facilitate an integrated, end-to-end asset management life cycle by tracking assets from procurement until disposal, along with real-time audit and reconciliation capabilities.
During this time and in the subsequent phases, our team focused development on four key elements:
Our project team inventoried existing asset management processes across Accenture’s geographies and selected the best of them. We used these to reengineer new, end-to-end asset life cycle processes to get to a standard, global solution. This solution can be customized at local levels to address specific regulatory compliance requirements. Designing this global process flow formed the “core” for deploying the Asset Management application in stages to Accenture’s 51 countries.
To provide an enhanced user experience, the team developed a custom, mobile-friendly service portal with an intuitive and interactive user interface. Key features include auto-generation of standardized asset tags and QR codes when assets are received. The asset manager capability lets users view and edit assets, check the activity log as well as reprint asset tags. Users can upload assets in bulk using an intuitive and easy-to-use template. The portal is also accessible on mobile devices via a browser, making it easier for asset managers to tag assets and generate bar codes directly from their device. For software managers, the portal enables end-user license management giving software owners the capability to allocate and manage the licenses they are responsible for.
The project team created several role-based dashboards that provide real-time reporting to govern data. The dashboard for asset managers provides the ability to precisely track all their assets, confirm data governance and accurately forecast stock refresh. Those in asset operations can monitor and directly engage in asset life cycle activities (movement, maintenance and disposal) and related compliance tasks. The dashboards for Accenture Controllership give users end-to-end visibility on fixed-asset creation, accruals and overall reconciliation of physical assets in the EAM system and fixed assets in SAP. The dashboard for software asset administrators displays actionable information, trends and a cost-savings view.
The integration of the dashboards with Accenture’s SAP ERP system facilitates financial reconciliation of assets and eliminates the need for users to toggle between ServiceNow and SAP to download and compare records. Manual effort is greatly reduced and users now have one unified view of asset records and consolidated reports.
Working jointly with ServiceNow, the team developed a powerful mobile app to register, manage and periodically audit assets from anywhere. The app has several distinct features, one of which is a multi-scan capability that enables users to scan QR or bar codes on multiple assets in one pass. The mobile app is integrated with the overall solution and automates and accelerates the amount of time it takes to register assets, resulting in increased operational efficiencies and major time savings.
The EAM program teams consist of many members with specialized skills from different global locations, working on different areas but toward one common goal. In our day-to-day efforts, our teams engaged more than 200 global stakeholders representing 51 countries. Team members and stakeholders participated in design thinking workshops to complete a gap assessment of the current processes and then developed “to-be” processes to finalize designs. Business analysts converted those processes into user stories that were then passed to the development team to write the code.
Other teams at Accenture’s Innovation Centers collaborated on the mobile app development together with ServiceNow. The collaboration of all our teams made tremendous progress in deploying the asset management solution to nearly all of Accenture’s geographic units globally. We continue to evolve and improve the solution.
The collaboration of all our teams made tremendous progress in deploying the asset management solution to nearly all of Accenture’s geographic units globally. We continue to evolve and improve the solution.
Accenture is transforming the way the company tracks and manages hardware, software and non-IT assets globally. This single, integrated solution significantly streamlines the process and helps to manage the life cycle of assets from beginning to end.
In just one Accenture location alone, the introduction of the mobile application to manage assets through their life cycles reduced time spent resolving location discrepancies by 40 percent, reduced the time to perform asset audits by 50 percent and improved asset issue resolution time by 25 percent.
When the COVID-19 pandemic set in and Accenture needed to move desktops and other hardware assets to employee homes quickly, our EAM program team was able to take advantage of the work accomplished to date. We quickly spun up an ad hoc asset tracking solution onto the ServiceNow platform, made some enhancements to the mobile app to enable check-in and check-out of the assets, as well as developed a way to automate the return-to-office process. These capabilities helped other Accenture teams quickly and effectively perform large numbers of equipment moves.
Benefits of Accenture’s enterprise asset management solution on ServiceNow:
"This intelligent, automated asset management system is enabling a whole new level of agility in our workplace."
Centralizes IT and non-IT assets, providing enterprise visibility
Standardizes the asset management process
Performs auto-discovery of hardware and software assets
Enables end-user license management and software requests
Automates data controls, governance, risk and compliance activities
Established governance and compliance policies