Imagine you’ve been asked by executives in your company to manage the upcoming audit with Software Vendor #42. This supplier has a history of aggressive enforcement of software entitlements and is contractually allowed to audit your use of his software.

On some prior audits your usage didn’t match the entitled quantities, and these discrepancies required ADDITIONAL UNBUDGETED PURCHASES of license rights from Vendor #42.

But you’re a go-getter. You’re thinking “no problem, I’ve got this ….”

You figure you’ll just extract all POs related to software from your company’s financial systems, and tally the total license rights for each software product into Spreadsheet #1, and then get someone from the IT department to collect a list all of the discovered software running on any company-attached computer into Spreadsheet #2.

With these two spreadsheets, you figure the task will be as easy as comparing spreadsheets. And since you’re a wizard in spreadsheet manipulation - it should be a breeze!! If any extra software shows up for which you can’t find matching POs or invoices, you figure you’ll just ask the IT Director to delete it. No big problem…right? Should be done by Friday in time for the big ballgame. And you definitely will NOT allow this to sink into EXTRA UNBUDGETED PURCHASES of license rights.

OK, since your company has a sophisticated financial system with accurate data, you query it for all POs for Vendor #42 within the category of “software products” over the past 5 years.

Voila! Within 30 minutes you have a file of 200 POs!!! This is gonna be so easy!!!

Let’s open PO #1. Here it is…


OUR COMPANY  Purchase Order 
PO # 124572B  July 1, 2017 APPROVED 
TO: Vendor #42 
Line Description QTY UoM Dates Amount
1 Ent DB SuperDuper SW 1 Lot 1 year $250,000 USD
Send to : Method:        
Joe in IT  Download         

Uh-oh…. $250K for some big package (1 Lot) of SuperDuper DB software?? Wonder what’s included in that bundle? Let’s call Joe in IT. Uh-oh…Joe left the company last year. Let’s ask Joe’s manager. Uh-oh …he’s on vacation.

Let’s check Spreadsheet #2 from the IT department for details on SuperDuper usage.


IT Department Spreadsheet #2 of SD Software Found 
Products Located Qty
o o o
o o o
Super Duper DB V1 Real Prod Server #1  3
Super Duper DB V2.5 Virtual Prod Server #2 4
Super Duper DB V3.2 Test Server #4 1
Super Duper DB V4 Devl Server #5 4
o o o
o o o
DuperSuper SW Trial  Test Server #3 1
DuperSuper SW V4 Prod Server #1 22
o o o
SuperDuper DB PC-Version Company PCs 245
SD imbedded in Company App Servers #4,5,6 4
o o o
o o o

Yikes!!! Multiple versions? On Test/Dev/Prod? Real and virtual? Variations in product name?? Trial SW on a Prod server?? Hundreds of PCs? Imbedded in company apps? Do we pay by-the server, by-the-CPU, by-the-user, or some other metric? When was all this installed?

This stuff is propagating everywhere at lightning speed! PO’s might not help. What to do? You call Procurement to ask for copies of software-related contracts.

Oh no. SuperDuper was originally owned by Vendor #12 until they were acquired by Vendor #42 last year. The license rights to SuperDuper came from Vendor #12 to a company that merged with your company two years ago. Vendor #42 is disputing the “assignment” rights from that merged company – so you might not even be entitled to SuperDuper. Yikes!!

You check Vendor #42’s website hoping for answers. It says “Contact your Vendor #42 salesperson for details.” You’re hoping to avoid that.

Now you’re worried. You haven’t solved SuperDuper SW yet after many hours of work, and it’s only the first of 10 different software products you use from Vendor #42. You wonder what insights you might find in company invoices – or maybe from the Legal department.

This imaginary nightmare scenario plays out for real at some IT shops before they decide to invest in a Software Asset Management (SAM) system and maybe hire an expert SAM consultant company like Siwel.

Don’t wait until this nightmare becomes your reality. Contact Siwel today!