Software Asset Management
Global development of modern technologies has resulted in every organization using commercial software on a daily basis. It appears that in most companies the number and type of purchased licenses do not respond to their actual needs. This problem may be solved through efficient software asset management (SAM) and will let your organization reduce costs, limit the risk of penalties resulting from the lack of the relevant number of licenses and significantly improve IT security in the long term.
Why is efficient software asset management (SAM) important?
Over the past years the objectives and tasks IT departments are faced with have changed and currently are much more aligned with the strategy and business priorities of the entire organization. IT departments participate in the execution of large and complex projects and at the same time render cost-efficient, secure and effective basic services. The two aspects, i.e. efficient and effective management of IT assets (ITAM) and software assets management (SAM), are becoming more and more important in achieving organizational success as they fit in key business challenges:
Software-related expenditures constitute 20-40% of IT budgets. In many places, conscious software management provides opportunities to reduce such expenses by as much as several dozen per cent. Many organizations see potential savings in applying ITAM/SAM solutions as, apart from virtualization, they provide the greatest opportunities for IT costs reduction.
The number of software audits conducted by licensors or on their behalf has been on the rise for years. Many providers include compliance programs in the software sale cycle. In the nearest future software legality audits will not come as unique cases but rather a routine activity of every provider. Companies unprepared for audit expose themselves to the risk of using the software against the license terms or beyond the acquired rights which may result in high penalties imposed by licensors. Managing software in a conscious manner allows organizations to prepare for an audit in advance and thus limit any possible license discrepancies. Additionally, by adopting a proactive approach companies can reduce their costs related to involving IT staff, security and legal departments in the audit as well as hiring external advisers who help sail through the audit process.
Cybersecurity-related threats are one of the key challenges identified by finance directors. The US government working group has pointed to two actions that help prevent security incidents, namely keeping a register of authorized equipment and keeping a register of authorized software (source: Consensus Audit Guidelines: www.sans.org/cag). Conscious software management allows to define and maintain those registers, which translates into significant increase in the security level of the IT environment of the company. Additionally, periodic software stock-taking allows to define the need for security patches and helps eliminate potential weaknesses.
Software Asset Management – the value clients can expect:
A team of Deloitte SAM experts combines a detailed license knowledge with specialized technical competencies, which makes them perfectly fit to deliver comprehensive license management solutions.
Knowledge - increased awareness of the actually used software and the possibility of adjusting actions to the license rights held.
Predictability - a standardized product for the software end-users, streamlined license purchase process, reduction of unnecessary SAM-related activities, precisely defined rules of using software support and the possibility to forecast future costs based on a detailed analysis of the actual license needs.
Savings - maintaining an optimal level of the licenses held, continuous monitoring and efficient management of licenses not used by the company, enabling their re-use, identifying the opportunity to upgrade the software to the latest version possible and eliminating possible license shortages.
Efficiency - a standard license agreement verification and approval process, a consistent approach to audits ordered by providers and proactive identification of license inconsistencies.
Surplus elimination - cutting back on unauthorized software use and unnecessary license purchase, review of terms resulting from the concluded license agreements.
Oversight - ensuring better control over software distribution, development and maintenance and specifying terms and conditions of using the support of providers.
Monitoring and reporting - identifying cases where software has been used in breach of license terms, and being in control of license surpluses and shortages.
Security - reducing the risk that software may be used against internal regulations and the risk of using software with identified security flaws or vulnerable to commonly known security threats.
How can we support your company in the efficient use of Software Asset Management?
- Review and evaluation of SAM processes - the first stage entails a review of software management processes used in the company, and next a benchmarking analysis is carried out with the use of the SAM program developed by Deloitte, based on ISO-19770-1 norm and ITIL. The evaluation stage covers the organizational model, management practices, tools used as well as SAM-related processes, procedures and operations
- Formulation of the SAM strategy - development of the concept and a detailed plan of a long-term software management strategy for the entire organization. As a key element of this service our team defines and documents the company-wide approach to software management, its objectives and all the necessary actions.
- Designing SAM procedures and rules- development of scalable SAM principles, procedures and processes tailored to the company’s individual needs, and preparation of a plan regarding the division of responsibilities for the execution and supervision over individual activities from the SAM area.
- SAM transformation - designing a plan covering the implementation of strategic software management activities, and next supporting the company with the implementation of new solutions that replace the existing ones. A comprehensive SAM transformation plan covers individuals involved in software management, processes used in the company, current procedures and technologies supporting SAM.
- Software license optimization - the stock-tacking of the software used by the company on the basis of current and historical data and an analysis of the existing license status (licenses held vs their use). At the very last stage of this service our clients are presented with the possible optimization solutions with reference to one or more providers.
- Software delivery rationalization - helping the company develop a software purchase strategy which allows to eliminate excessive support services and software licenses, increase company’s efficiency through the optimization of software investments and significantly mitigate IT security-related threats.
- SAM training sessions - a training program adjusted to the company’s individual needs, which includes the existing SAM processes and tools and technologies applied.
- SAM tools installation and configuration -preparation of a comprehensive strategy for applying tools supporting efficient software management on the basis of processes operating in the company. Our role is to provide the organization with assistance and support during the selection process, the implementation and the right configuration of tools used for software management based on the adopted strategy assumptions.
- Implementation of the agreements management system - consultancy and advisory services with respect to the selection, implementation and configuration of the agreements and licenses management system.
- Contracts management - support with determining the exact number of licenses held and the current license terms.
- Monitoring license compliance - development and implementation of a comprehensive process of continuous control and self-improvement in the field of software management. In this way the ongoing compliance with the applicable license terms is ensured.
- SAM managed services - supporting the company with various aspects of software management (from selected, individual solutions to full-scope outsourcing).