Five traits of a highly effective SAM strategy

Posted on Tuesday, October 20, 2015
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By Matt Ward
ITAM Business Manager


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Software Asset Management (SAM) is maturing in the UK, and as one of the pioneers in this space, we’ve seen acceptance of the technology change rapidly in the last few years. With trends in consumerisation of technology, BYOD and mobile technologies, software and other assets are becoming more distributed than ever; the value of SAM might never be so important.

Despite becoming a staple discipline for IT organisations, there’s still lots to gain for most from their SAM tools in meeting these new challenges.  Here’s five traits of a highly effective SAM strategy:

1. Smarter decisions

It’s one thing having the data available from your tool, it’s another thing interpreting it.  SAM provides a goldmine of information, often on your hardware estate as well as software.  Scrutinising this to determine dormant assets, under-utilised licenses or the technology being over-worked, is essential.  Using the data at your disposal will help you make smarter decisions and better inform procurement of technology.

2. Save money

The upshot of smarter procurement is of course, money saved.  On average a mature SAM user will save 30% or more on licensing costs, derived from right-sizing license estates to fit the workforce, reducing software maintenance costs and retirement, where necessary.  Likewise, once you know what you own versus what you have installed, you can begin looking at software by type, grouping that data together and choosing one vendor to negotiate a better deal with. Mature SAM users adopt this approach to great effect.

3. Accelerate software migration 

With the likes of Windows 10 and Office 16 on the horizon, software migration becomes an important project for many companies.  Having sound intelligence on your software estate means migrating users is significantly easier.  In fact, mature SAM users will typically deliver migration projects 70% faster than non-SAM users.  Don’t forget the spin-off benefits of this time saved too; users will be more productive with the latest tools and most likely enjoy an improved experience.

4. Remain compliant

According to Gartner, 65% of organisations can expect to be audited by at least one of their software vendors each year.  Without proper tools in place, or indeed processes to interpret the data if they do exist, you may not be fit to face an audit and could be vulnerable to heavy fines.  You’ll also waste a lot of resource preparing for it.  A mature SAM strategy proactively manages license compliance, by automating discovery and regular reporting, so at any point-in-time your licensing position can be reviewed and proved upon request.

5. Automate

The SAM users really pushing the boundaries are those tapping into the potential of automation.  This includes software self-service for users, typically in the form of internal web stores, which push users through the necessary workflows and approvals needed to obtain software, but can also check for a spare licence and if not go through the appropriate procurement process. No longer is precious IT resource tied up in managing licenses, enabling this to be better deployed on more valuable projects.

Whether you’re already a SAM user and don’t think you’re getting as much from your tools as you should, or are just new to this approach altogether then get in touch.  Our dedicated team of experts are on hand to help whatever stage you’re at.

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