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Top 3 Reasons Why Asset Metadata and Histories Are Integral to K-12 Asset Management

Cartoon image with location tagging, analytics, and workflow management icons stemming out from laptop screen

Here’s a somewhat staggering fact for our K-12 IT folks out there—thanks to the demand of edtech tools in the present classroom environment, the K-12 education technology industry is currently valued to reach $56,490,000 by 2026. That’s a whopping 79% increase in valuation from 2019, due to the rising demand for edtech platforms and devices.

The reality is that K-12 districts are managing assets worth millions of dollars, and IT teams are a critical part to keep teaching and learning going uninterrupted, as well as working within a district’s budget. That means IT teams need a smarter, more detailed way to care for the assets they have in their district.

Asset metadata and comprehensive asset histories are invaluable tools for device management. Read on to see the top three reasons why K-12 districts need asset metadata and detailed device histories to properly manage district assets.

What Is Metadata?

Before we fully dive in, let’s start with the basics. What are IT technicians referring to when they say “metadata?”

Simply put, metadata is exactly what it sounds like—it’s data about data. As describes, “Metadata organizes a data object by using terms associated with that particular object.”

Metadata makes an asset (i.e. a student’s district-issued Chromebook) easily searchable and organized for K-12 IT teams. Additionally, metadata includes data like a device’s operating system, IP address, and organizational unit (OU).

K-12 IT teams use metadata to manage student devices, generate asset reports, and oversee spare devices.

The Importance of Asset Histories

Simply put, asset history is the complete, end-to-end view of a device’s usage and maintenance record. It provides K-12 IT technicians a comprehensive record of what the device has been through.

For a district device like a student Chromebook, the asset history includes aspects like a history of device owners, help tickets associated with that device, and audit data. This is crucial information for IT teams to have at their disposal. A quick scan of the device can show technicians the last assigned user, location, status, and more.

Get The Full Picture of Your Assets with Metadata and Histories

With both metadata and detailed histories at technicians’ disposal, districts can radically streamline the way they work with K-12 assets.

1. Know Exactly Where Assets Are (And With Whom)

As districts continue implementing 1:1 device initiatives, that means there are typically thousands of assets that are leaving campus on a daily basis. The chance of a device being lost, stolen, or broken are exponentially higher—especially considering that these devices are in the hands of young learners.

If your district covers more than one campus, as many K-12 districts do, there’s an even greater need for accurate ownership records. Asset metadata and histories provide answers to important questions like “What school is Chromebook X checked out to?” or “Who last signed in to Chromebook X?” Technicians can access a particular Chromebook’s metadata and/or history to check their records.

For instance, a common problem for K-12 IT teams is when a Chromebook is not signed in to the original owner. If a device was checked out to Maria at Hillgrove Elementary, but technicians see that the Chromebook was last accessed by Shalini at Hillgrove Elementary, they can easily reassign the Chromebook to Shalini or arrange for the Chromebook to be given back to Maria.

2. Increase district ROI with smarter spending decisions

As previously mentioned, asset metadata and histories give K-12 districts that full picture of their devices. Having a history of audit data and related tickets is a huge part of keeping working devices in the students’ hands during the school year.

More and more districts are using asset management systems to help IT teams manage and work with district devices. Technicians with asset management solutions receive the status of all audit checks—that means they can flag which specific devices failed the audits and follow up with the individual student. Additionally, technicians are able to pull data about other audits that device may have failed, and how long the problem has been going on.

Not only do regular audits ensure that students have working devices, they also help increase the district’s ROI. Catching a problem with an asset early is a great way to solve the problem before it becomes a bigger issue, or even worse—is never returned to the district at all. Moreover, audit data provides IT teams with an exact number of devices in operation (including spare devices), so guessing how many Chromebooks need replacing is a thing of the past.

3. Save time and administrative headache with MDM integrations

I hate to throw another intimidating fact at you, but more than half of IT leaders interviewed by the Consortium for School Network said that their budgets were too strained “to hire the personnel needed to support the tech assets they have already purchased.” It’s pretty typical for a small but mighty team of IT technicians to cover thousands of assets at once—so they certainly don’t have time to waste on the small stuff.

MDM integrations can help IT teams find up-to-the-minute, accurate device data for every asset using metadata and histories. With MDM integrations, there’s no need to switch between platforms or share sensitive login information. Moreover, MDM integrations can unlock advanced functionality, like remotely locking Chromebooks from a help ticket.

API-driven MDM integrations, K-12 districts bring the district’s entire support system together, while improving visibility and accuracy across IT workflows.

“Efficiency” is the magic word for K-12 teams. If something can help streamline IT workflows, districts need to incorporate it to keep working devices in students’ hands. Integrating with asset metadata and histories does just that—lets IT teams work skillfully and efficiently by having relevant data at their fingertips.

Improve K-12 Efficiency With Detailed Asset Information

Asset histories and metadata are only the first step for providing efficient device management. If K-12 districts really want to incorporate metadata and histories into an actionable workflow for their IT team, they should implement an asset management solution.

To learn more, visit the on-demand library or schedule a chat to learn about asset management built for the K-12 experience.