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    Assets - the lost potential

    Jimi Wikman
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    I remember when I first saw Insight in the Riada office and I was blown away by the potential. When Insight was split off into Mindville later I thought that Insight would take off like a rocket. And it did so well that Atlassian eventually acquired Mindville. I had no reason to think that Insight would not become a new product with Atlassian that would rock the world, but I was wrong. Very wrong.

    In July 2020 Atlassian announced that they acquired Mindville and thereby took ownership of Insight as a product. Since then things have moved on for the Data Center version where things like improved UI and Auditing have been focus points, making it an even better administration tool for Jira Administrators.

    For cloud... well, it has been pretty dead in the water.

    Sure it has the base functions, but there are so many things missing!

    Differences between Data Center and Cloud.

    Import data types

    Cloud: CSV, JSON, Assets Discovery
    Data Center: CSV, JSON, Assets Discovery, DB, LDAP, Jira Users and Groups

    Integrations

    Cloud: Jira Service Management Services, Marketplace Integrations for Cloud
    Data Center: Cloud providers (AWS, Azure, Google Cloud), Mobile device and software management (JAMF, SCCM, Snow), Other CMDBs (ServiceNow, Device42), Atlassian ecosystem (Jira & Bitbucket, Confluence, Tempo), Others (NVD)

    REST APIs

    Cloud: Public REST API, External Imports API
    Data Center: Public REST API

    Object schema templates

    Cloud: Coming soon!
    Data Center: ITSM, HR, FM

     

    There is more...

    While this just show the high level differences I think you can see that there is a substantial gap in high level functionalities. In addition to these changes we also miss features like the ability to upload scheme specific icons and automation. There is also no file management for CSV imports and so on.

     

    The Gap is not the worst part...

    While having a big gap between Data Center and Cloud is bad, there are other things that in my opinion are even worse and that is accessibility. I don't mean the UI, but the fact that on Data Center Assets is available for free, while on Cloud you have to double your annual cost and go premium to get your hands on it.

    The fact that a single agent license cost a whooping $47 (compared to Jira Software's $15 per license) is cause for many mid-sized to large companies to immediately regret trying out Assets in Data Center.

    This cost and the fact that you can not even try it out in a limited capacity make Assets something that only those willing to buy on a leap of faith, or people that already have experience with the product, to actually experience it. This is the same problem that Atlassian have with Jira Align and I think it is also why both Jira Align and Assets are growing a lot slower than they should.

    Assets as a Jira System Administration tool is amazing

    https://confluence.atlassian.com/insightapps/files/1085180806/1085180804/1/1631100753464/jira_1.pngIf you have used Assets on Data Center or Server, then you probably already know what an amazing tool it is to keep track of your Jira system. The Jira environment import not only spider though your system and keep you updated on changes, it is also a very nice one stop database for all your administration needs.

    It will allow you to keep track of all integrations, service accounts and anything else that you have that is not directly included in the import. If you have a messy system with a lot of technical debt from migrations and things like that, then it is an amazing tool to keep track of what you need to clean up and what you should consolidate.

    It also provides a very useful tool for your support desk where you can connect all tickets to existing configurations. For example, you can connect all configuration requests and automatically assign an approval to the project lead. This speed things up and you can simply ignore tickets that are not approved, seriously reducing time you spend on tickets.

    If used correctly you can also connect all tickets to the configurations involved. This type of historical documentation really help to maintain your system well-kept and organized.

    I hope to see much more development on Assets Cloud

    I really, really like Assets. It is one of my favorite features for Jira Service Management and as such I really, really hope we will see a lot of improvements when it comes to the Cloud version. The Jira environment import is a must I would say, but also AWS and Azure import is really, really important. I think many will also miss both Tenant and Yamf imports.

    When it comes to the Jira environment import it has some areas where it should absolutely be adjusted. For example, you should be able to follow the full chain of configurations regardless of starting point and there is no Permission schema, which is odd on Data Center.

    The road forward is I was in charge

    I am no fan of the forced Premium features that Atlassian have. I think it goes against their core values and I think you should be able to explore all products regardless of subscription level. So what I would do is either break out Assets as its own product or add it for free with limitations in the free subscription tier.

    If you can make 3 schemes and only have 1000 items in each for free, then more people will want to try it out. More people trying it out means that more people will see how useful it is, and more people will want to get the full version. More people means that more companies will build more apps for it... and so on.

    --

    Well, for now I will continue to enjoy the amazing features that Jira environment import provides on Data Center. I hope that one day I will not only consider moving to Cloud, but actually yearn for it!

    Let's get Assets on Cloud Amazing!!


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