As a Software Asset Manager, you are responsible for managing all the software assets within your organization. This involves managing and optimizing the purchase, deployment, maintenance, utilization and disposal of software applications.
If you’re fortunate to have enough resources, your Software Asset Management (SAM) team consists of license, entitlement, contract and tools analysts, process engineers and potentially an external SAM consultant for specific expertise or advisory services. Or, you may share roles amongst a small number of resources.
Your SAM team collects and manages software license data that is used for audit preparation, true-ups and contract negotiations with your software suppliers. This data is also used for security and patch management, hardware refreshes and data center migrations. The data that your team manages is used by many different departments for a variety of reasons.
Essentially, as the Software Asset Manager, you are a broker of information that is used to make important business decisions. These decisions can impact the financial bottom line of your company.
For example, let’s say that you are preparing for an Oracle audit and the data analysis performed by the SAM team uncovers a licensing over-deployment of $10 million. In this situation, your company either has to analyze how the software is deployed and being used, and then evaluate options, or pay Oracle $10 million and a potential penalty at the conclusion of the audit. The information that you have provided in advance of the audit will force your company to re-evaluate its Oracle licensing scenarios and find ways to avoid unnecessary costs.
In another example, your organization is in the middle of an IBM contract renewal. IBM has proposed a multi-million-dollar agreement that is valued higher than your available budget. Your internal contracts manager and legal counsel need to understand what software is being used and needed for future initiatives. Through data analysis, your team discovers that there is a lot of shelfware in the environment – software that has been purchased but is not deployed – so many of the licenses proposed in the new contract are not needed. The data that you provided helps the negotiation team to “right-size” the contract, reducing its value by 50% and saving your company a significant amount of money.
IT organizations are always searching for ways to reduce spend and the Software Asset Manager provides data that uncovers cost savings opportunities on software licensing, maintenance and contract renewals.
Ultimately, you, the Software Asset Manager, hold the keys to the kingdom of valuable data and are in a position of knowledge and importance. As the broker, you distribute important information internally that is used to make critical business decisions that will contribute to your company’s prosperity.
Hopefully your executive team understands the value you bring to the organization. The Software Asset Manager – a role to covet and admire!
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