In today’s world, software is a critical component of almost every organisation’s operations. It is used to manage data, communicate with clients, automate processes and perform a wide range of other essential functions. However, with the increasing complexity and variety of software being used, it can be challenging to keep track of all the licences, updates and versions that are available to you. This is where Software Asset Management (SAM) comes in.
In this article, we will cover the most frequently asked questions about SAM, its importance, benefits and how to implement and oversee it successfully.
What is Software Asset Management (SAM)?
Software Asset Management (SAM) is the process of managing and optimising the acquisition, deployment, use, maintenance and disposal of software within an organisation. It involves tracking all the software licences, versions, updates and other related information to ensure that they are used effectively and efficiently. This can be internal or external; for example, it could be in terms of the cloud or your physical premises.
How is SAM used in business?
SAM is predominantly focused on the finances behind all of the licences and agreements you pay for compared to what you are actually using as part of your business. Using SAM means you can be sure that the software you’re using is appropriate for your agreement with the software vendor. Within your business, it can be used for purposes including:
- Ensuring that you are, and your usage of the software is, complying with any licensing or security agreements, to uncover any security risks and help protect your business.
- Encouraging increased workflow and productivity from your team.
- Identifying where resources are being used less or are not needed in order to reallocate these to areas where they can be better utilised, or negotiate the volume of contracts to eradicate unused licences and save you money.
- Reducing the number of overhead costs through streamlining IT processes, which can be done by automation or management.
- Setting up processes to achieve long-term goals in regards to acquisition, documentation, deployment and use of any software required.
Why is SAM important?
SAM is essential because it helps organisations manage their software assets better, reduce costs, improve compliance and increase productivity. By keeping track of all the software used in an organisation, SAM can help identify areas where licences are being underutilised, leading to cost savings. Financial saving can improve your cash flow as well as mean you have more to put back into your business, encouraging further profit to follow.
It can also ensure that software is being used in compliance with licensing agreements, reducing the risk of legal or financial penalties. Additionally, SAM helps to prevent software-related downtime by ensuring that all software is up-to-date and secure, increasing productivity, and ensuring that you are getting the best from your software and your team at all times.
What are the benefits of SAM?
Some of the benefits of SAM include:
- Cost savings through better licence management.
- Reduced risk of legal or financial penalties for non-compliance.
- Improved security by ensuring all software is up-to-date and secure.
- Increased productivity by reducing software-related downtime.
- Better decision making through improved visibility and control over software assets.
- Improved vendor management through better negotiation and procurement practices.
What falls under SAM?
SAM covers all software used within an organisation, including operating systems, applications, and databases. It includes all aspects of software management, including acquisition, deployment, use, maintenance, and disposal. SAM also covers licence compliance, including tracking and managing software licences and ensuring that they are used in compliance with licensing agreements. Some of the technologies that falls under SAM include:
- Licence Management: Provides an overview of where you are over licensed or under licensed to avoid overspending
- Managing Patches: Deploys new patches to keep your software up to date and in line with security standards
- Software Inventory: Accounts for your software including relevant details
- Software Metering: Identifying utilisation of your software and it is compliant with agreements
- Application Control: Managing the access to your software
How does SAM apply and compare to IT Asset Management (ITAM)?
IT Asset Management (ITAM) is the process of managing all the physical and digital assets within an organisation, including hardware, software and network components. SAM is a subset of ITAM that focuses specifically on software assets. While ITAM covers all types of assets, SAM focuses on managing software licences and ensuring that they are used effectively and efficiently. In summary, SAM is a critical part of ITAM, as it helps manage and optimise software assets within an organisation.
Who oversees SAM?
SAM is typically overseen by IT or procurement departments within an organisation. Depending on the size of the organisation, a dedicated SAM team may be formed to manage software assets. The SAM team works with other departments, such as legal and finance, to ensure compliance with licensing agreements and manage the financial aspects of software licensing.
How can an organisation be successful at SAM?
To be successful at SAM, an organisation should:
- Develop a SAM strategy and policy that aligns with organisational goals.
- Assign roles and responsibilities for managing software assets.
- Develop processes for managing software licences and ensuring compliance.
- Use SAM tools to automate software management tasks and gain visibility into software usage.
- Educate employees about the importance of SAM and their roles in managing software assets.
- Conduct regular audits to ensure compliance with licensing agreements.
- Continuously monitor and optimise software usage and costs.
If you follow these tips, you should be able to implement SAM successfully and see all of the benefits for yourself. However, if you are still uncertain about how to implement SAM or how it can benefit your business, be sure to get in touch with us. Our friendly team is always on hand to answer any of your questions.
Why choose Eventura as your Managed IT Service Provider?
Eventura has been providing managed IT services to countless customers for 20 years. Our talented team of people can help you identify all your businesses IT needs and engineer bespoke IT solutions that have real-world benefits to your business.
If you would like to speak to one of our experts, you can request a free call back here.