Getting beyond compliance and into effective SAM – Part 3 of 4
Our “Getting beyond compliance and into effective SAM” series focusses on the challenges involved in Software Asset Management (SAM) and License Management. Building a team, choosing supporting technologies and generally maintaining an organization’s license entitlement are some of the more time consuming tasks SAM Managers are faced with day-in, day-out, however these pale into insignificance when looking at the time assigned to transactional tasks specifically.
The first instalment of our series outlined the following three high level challenges stopping organizations getting past compliance and into the sweet spot of SAM:
- Slow implementation of technology, teams and processes
In part one, we discussed the challenges of implementing an in-house SAM program and how it takes away from the day-to-day business activities of a SAM Manager or team.
- Being bogged down with transactional License Management tasks
Part two offered insight into how transactional tasks slow teams down and how they are often the biggest blocker of effective SAM Programs.
- The complexity of software licensing
In this third instalment, we take a look at how software licensing is constantly evolving, and as a result, becoming more complex. A combination of a developing technology landscape as well as a response to ongoing changes in how software is consumed are part of the cause – but how can we maintain and progress whilst dealing with increasing complexity and a high volume of work?
Dealing with the complexity of software licensing in-house
Whether your organization is preparing to adopt a new in-house SAM process, or if the one in place needs to become more effective, it starts with having the right people involved. Recruiting and then providing ongoing training to a SAM Manager or team while involving key stakeholders through the organization (Procurement, CFO and IT) is step one. Assigning responsibilities to these stakeholders and arranging regular review is step two.
Next, prioritising the technology deployed (or scheduled for deployment) based on annual spend and the likelihood of an audit will help focus efforts where they are needed most. Some licensing schemes are simpler to manage than others and so beginning with those that are easier to understand may help when working up to more complex licensing terms. Amalgamate your software and group by vendor, prioritize the simple ‘quick wins’ and then move on to the more complex software licensing.
Automating SAM using License Management as a Service (LMaaS)
Larger organizations can more easily accommodate an investment in an internal SAM solution compared with smaller companies with fewer employees or a tighter IT budget. For many, a License Management platform, or a managed service is a more viable option.
Using an existing inventory tool, License Dashboard will perform basic license reconciliation within a few minutes, revealing a detailed and accurate understanding of your organizations installed software and usage – inventory data becomes business intelligence.
A SAM Manager’s most important job should be about balancing the installed consumption data with what is allowed to be installed. The reconciliation process offers data to speed up the initial process and allow SAM Managers to spend more time investigating compliance and assessing whether or not the software and licenses purchased are really the best value for an organization. Re-assigning and un-installing mis-assigned or un-used license is the first step toward the sweet spot of SAM.