As part of the May SAMPanel debate, we are very happy to welcome to the SAMPanel André Rangel, Partner of Hands On Consulting, who we asked, “Looking ahead, what are your predictions for the SAM market?”
Observing and analyzing the question from the perspective of a market that still takes his first steps in the matter, following my remarks.
In 2015, looking back and watching carefully the Brazilian market, which we feel regarding the more mature markets such as the UK and the US, is a certain frustration, because we are certainly a few years away.
However, the most careful observer can clearly notice a growing awareness, still small but perfectly observable to the naked eye.
1) Awareness (true and definitive) on the importance of the topic
In general, companies in Brazil has many other concerns to address in their day to day, for example, our economic environment, the increasing tax burden spiral in the country and a complex tax system. However, when we talk to corporate executives in general, with some exceptions, most of them do not see further value in actions such as improvement in the controls over IT assets and software assets.
Many companies when faced with the audits carried out by software producers feel the pain of penalty, rehearse actions and speeches of improving processes, which henceforth will give attention to the issue, but after the painful time of regularization, forget it and all continues as before.
This aspect in 2015, is already changing. Large Brazilian corporate groups are already taking the initiative to implement end-to-end ITAM projects. This is certainly great news and every journey begins with the first step.
2) A ‘victimization speech’ beginning to be left behind
Over the years, I had the opportunity to participate in a compliance program implemented by the local subsidiary of some of the largest software vendors in the world. At that time, companies had mixed reactions when they received a letter of audit notification. Few companies collaborated with “open heart” during the process, understanding that as soon as the procedure was over, the better. Other questioned everything during the process, even the fact of being in Brazil, receive a letter of notification from abroad, in English. Obviously, this behavior, to put “roadblocks’ that prevent running smoothly only leads to relationship problems and at the end of the day with less willingness on the part of vendors to make certain concessions on legitimate rights, in time to prepare settlement letter.
This is a controversial point. Companies use (or have installed), products developed and commercialized by other (which are not philanthropy entities) when faced with an adverse situation, tend to “blame” the vendor, accusing it of wanting to ‘make money’ with ‘audits slot ‘. Some managers in Brazil tend to see vendors as a bogeyman who just wants to withdraw money from your budget. It is true that vendors invest thousands of dollars to develop commercial products that help people and enterprises realize their core business, so has the right to have their protected intellectual property, and receive remuneration for the use of the products of your property – remembering that software is a ‘licensed’ product.
Vendors keep active compliance programs in the country, some with their own staff using other staff of some big4. The increase in the volume and scope of audits increases the concern of managers in general, constant communication with peers and the exchange of ideas and information between them helps solidify consciousness in the adoption of established processes and structured ITAM and SAM for example.
When companies adopt this kind of approach, they are perpetuating the controls and, most importantly, are changing habits, fleeing the immediacy of “passing the audit,” and perennial implementing controls that helped to reduce overall IT costs and contributing to the overall outcome of their organizations.
In the last Gartner IT Financial, Procurement & Asset Management Summit, held in Orlando in September last year, a very interesting infographic with Gartner forecasts was launched for the period 2015 to 2018. In 2017, Gartner states: “Enterprises will 10x spend more on software asset management services than on tools.”
Analyzing the Brazilian market today, I as a specialized professional in the topic, I have a mixture of joy and expectation since change is clear, indicating a new and consistent direction towards the professionalization of the sector, the increased demand of truly professionals specialized in the subject residing in Brazil, the arrival of new vendors of SAM and ITAM solutions and above all, what I consider most important: the awareness that SAM is not just about tools or controls in spreadsheets. SAM is a discipline that involves processes, people and technology, and like any major IT project, is not enough to have the ‘state of the art’ technology, and a lack of processes and/or skilled persons to work in the ITAM/SAM projects.
About the Author
André Rangel is a business consultant and subject matter expert on Software License Optimisation, Software Asset Management (SAM) and Software License Contract Compliance, with remarkable record for continuously exceeding, results, strong compliance mindset with exceptional negotiating and sales skills.
André represents Brazil on the SC7 “Software and Systems Engineering” sub-committee of ISO and is a member of ISO/IEC JTC1 SC7 WG 21, working to develop and improve SAM standards, supporting education and adoption of software asset management around the world.