SAM projects are big undertakings and reach far and wide within an organisation. With many departments involved and many individuals representing every business area, SAM projects have thousands of variables that can throw a spanner in the works at any moment. As experts in software asset management, we have experienced demanding situations that have tested the limits of projects and personnel.
There are three main areas of failure that we have identified – here are the common issues encountered:
SAM projects need buy-in from the top down. Software asset management is a serious issue requiring serious attention. If senior management isn’t onboard it will be difficult to push such a huge project throughout an organisation. SAM needs to be on the agenda of everyone in the company and management must lead by example to ensure a comprehensive and successful outcome.
Inexperience will quickly deliver a SAM project to failure. Software asset management is tricky, complicated and, if mismanaged, can be incredibly costly to a company with missed and overused licences. Experienced SAM consultants are the only people to deliver a comprehensive review, defence and strategic plan for large software estates.
It is estimated that up to 75% of companies fail to comply with their licence obligations due to a lack of clear responsibility within the company. Properly delineated roles and responsibilities from the outset ensure that no element of the project is overlooked and assets are properly tracked.
In large organisations it is almost impossible to hide from company politics and it can be hard to keep internal competition and ‘one-upmanship’ out of projects. Utilise every skill, leverage internal competition, make sure that SAM is taken seriously and receives company-wide engagement.
Department heads must be engaged and helping drive SAM forward at ground level. Everyone is a software user; they need to be aware that they are using the software within the licensing agreement and not to the detriment of the company and how to assist with ongoing compliance.
Discovering a disparity of software is a natural part of SAM and a common cause of SAM failure in inexperienced hands. Whether there is none, limited, or existing asset management in place, large companies have many systems operating in many places, each containing the same or very different information. Every system must be discovered, every user identified, the purpose for every piece of software known and then rationalised. Vast IT landscapes can take a lot to tame. It requires the skill of experienced consultants and the latest SAM tools to fully explore and understand the buffet of software presented at the start of an asset management programme. For these reasons and many more, the technical element to SAM is far-reaching, critical to ensure 100% accuracy, and best left to experts.
SAM projects are huge undertakings and getting them wrong is not an option. Getting it right and steering a SAM project to success is tough, but the rewards massive. Successful SAM programs require technical, cultural, personnel and strategic alignment and in big organisations this can be a problem. To undertake a successful software asset management program you need a partner that has the depth of experience and breadth of knowledge to be able to take charge and rescue your software assets, delivering a harmonised, rationalised, economically restrained software environment.