Confusion and concern regarding software license audits rank high among the uncertainties experienced by larger organizations and multinationals. Concern is a valid state of mind as audits are a legal right your organization agreed to when buying a license, and the consequences of non-compliance can be very high. It’s important to treat any request for a self-assessment or other audit demand seriously as the requesting company is not likely to step back if you ignore them.
Confusion however may be somewhat of an overreaction. Receiving an audit notification doesn’t necessarily mean you are suspected of being out of compliance. Microsoft for instance tries to audit each of their Volume Licensing customers at least once every three years. Their software audit notification may simply mean that your time has come.