For most organizations, IT or otherwise, the most important thing is the bottom line. Due to the immense cost involved in cleaning up after a worm infection, more and more companies are spending time and money implementing patch management tools and processes to ensure that their IT operations continue to run smoothly in the face of an Internet full of new and changing threats.
All of the tools discussed today are more than capable of providing quality information to system administrators, as well as the ability to act on that information by patching vulnerable systems. For larger organizations looking for an all-encompassing set of applications providing patch management functionality and beyond, Microsoft's Systems Management Server and Altiris' suite of products may be the best choices. For organizations looking specifically for a point tool to provide vulnerability analysis and patch management, PatchLink Update and Shavlik's NetChk products will certainly fit the bill.
The more responsible we are as network and server administrators, the better it will be for everyone. If your organization isn't as committed to patch management as it could be, take the necessary steps to make it a priority in the eyes of your staff and management. Working one of the discussed patch management tools into your budget would be an excellent place to start.