In order to achieve the most benefits for a business, IT procurement and software asset management should be inextricably linked, but the practicalities can sometimes make achieving this cohesion seem a daunting process.
You may have the ‘procurement people’ in your finance department and your software asset managers at the IT desks or in another building or city. You may be considering outsourcing SAM so that the two departments won’t even be a part of the same company. It may seem a complicated task to achieve the required link, but one fact is apparent: bridging this gap – whether physical or imagined – can result in major financial and practical benefits for your business.
You cannot afford for your procurement staff to be in the dark when renewal negotiations come around and it is your asset managers who can provide the information that they need. You need IT procurement to know exactly which licenses you need and at what level, and they need the knowledge from the asset managers to optimize your IT spending.
Software Asset Management can provide invaluable insights into software usage, helping to identify potential savings and areas where license-audit risks could cause problems. It can provide an overview of even larger organisations, where acquisitions and mergers may have created a complicated software assets map, saving IT procurement from facing the impossible task of attempting to negotiate deals without the usage data they need.
This knowledge can also go much further than simply identifying applications that are not regularly used. It can even highlight specific features that are not providing value for money, opening up opportunities for procurement to source a cheaper or more appropriate alternative and to potentially cut maintenance costs. Then there is the added value of having professional eyes trained on warranties and of knowing exactly what is covered before those warranties expire and before the next round of negotiations begin. This is particularly vital when a range of vendors is being used.
In short, SAM facilitates an improved awareness of purchasing needs and an increased ability to negotiate with vendors in order to meet these specific requirements. It allows for the maximum value to be gained from existing software investments and offers the flexibility to grow as your company’s needs expand. It makes even long-term software purchasing plans more achievable and can simplify everything from reporting and budgeting to IT asset policies and acquisition processes. That is all before you start to look at the beneficial effects of SAM on other areas of your business, such as general procurement processes, hardware asset management and information security.
About the Author:
Livingstone provide an end-to-end software asset management solution for organisations looking to gain complete visibility and control over their software licensing spend.
Combining their unique approach, accurate inventory and entitlement data with experienced Software Asset Management (SAM) specialists, they understand their client’s software licensing needs and goals. They arm their specialists with vendor agnostic Livingstone technology to provide real time licensing transparency and control.