Featured Article from Software Licensing

Choosing a Software Asset Management Tool

February 24, 2017

When it comes to managing software assets, there’s no one “right” way or one-size-fits-all solution. It will depend on the organization, its software needs, how distributed it is and what type of IT resources the organization has. There are even different ways to determine software asset management (SAM).

“The total number of resources required could be based on total software spend, number of devices (data center and desktops), number of software titles and/or software licenses to manage, along with the amount of business analysis work required to support the enterprise,” wrote Flexera’s Adam Galbreath in a recent blog post.

Responsibility for software licensing isn’t always the same in every organization. While it’s often the IT department, some companies leave the responsibility with the finance department or even purchasing. But while whoever manages the process or how it’s carried out may vary, the goal doesn’t: it’s about ensuring value is realized from the investment made in a software asset management tool. It also requires a lot of complex work and attention to detail, including integration with various data sources in the company.

“Sources for inventory and business data connected to the SAM tool must be monitored and maintained, new software licenses need to be added, unauthorized software installations must be actioned, the usage of existing applications needs to be monitored to ensure they are being used effectively, and so on,” wrote Galbreath. “The SAM tool is the hub for everything software and license related. Your software asset management resources will have to develop expert knowledge of the tool and associated SAM processes to ensure the organization gets the most out of its SAM program.”

The primary message is that SAM isn’t just a tool to use to put out fires: a good SAM solution should work for the company. Once its properly integrated and managed, it can change from serving as a strictly operational to one that supports business analysis for the effective and efficient management of IT and the overall success of the company. To do this, however, organizations must ensure that they have a dedicated team in place to effectively manage their software estate with the new tool. It’s not a one-time job, so it’s important that companies seek out a SAM tool that works for their business and that those responsible for software licensing issues are actually using it.

“Companies should look to their SAM tool provider to help fill the gap from the end of the tool implementation to when the organization is prepared to fully take over the operation of the SAM program,” wrote Galbreath. “The benefit is a sustainable solution that avoids set-backs and accelerates business value realization.”

Edited by Maurice Nagle
Article comments powered by Disqus