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SAM Review
Software Asset Management (SAM) Review
Given the increasing importance of the software resource where associated expenditures generally increase in-line with rapidly growing IT infrastructures, it therefore follows that Software Asset Management (SAM) is now a key task within any organization, but especially the larger business. However the role of SAM has not necessarily been clearly defined within organizations, often either fulfilled on a part-time basis by either the centralized procurement or specialized IT departments. Inevitably procurement personnel don't necessarily understand how the software should be deployed, while the IT personnel don't necessarily have the requisite negotiation or commercial contractual skills to secure a solid and cost efficient software price. Therefore historically and even as of today, many organizations could be paying far too much for their software and often find themselves subject to "Software Stiffing" scenarios...

Software expenditure has increased from ~10% of the overall IT expenditure in the early 1990's to ~40%+ as of today. Without a SAM function it becomes impossible to identify "shelfware", paying for products that are not used, or indeed identify low use products or products where functionality has now been superseded, or is now included in base products (E.g. RDBMS, Operating System, Etc.). Equally from a polarized viewpoint, there is a need to safeguard that deployed software is actually being paid for as per the legal guidelines outlined by bodies such as The Federation Against Software Theft (FAST).

Value-4IT have considerable skills both technical and commercial that provide a platform for practicable SAM delivery and have considerably reduced software expenditure for many of our customers. From a simplistic viewpoint a SAM process is based upon the following:

Inventory Management (Software Resource - Product Portfolio, Contracts, et al)
Supplier Management (Contractual License - Negotiation, Renewal, et al)
Asset Management (Software Product - Audit, Metering, Acquisition, Retirement, et al)
Security Management (Software - DR Usage, Historical Records, et al)

The "Discovery" phase facilitated by the inventory process is pivotal for establishing the possibilities for reducing and controlling software expenditure costs. It is also important to note that software costs can be controlled without the requirement for product displacement by conversion, which should always be a last resort when observing the Keep It Simple Stupid (KISS) methodology, as per:

1. Displacement - Eradicate any unused or duplicate products
2. Negotiation - Renegotiate software contracts armed with function usage data
3. Simple Conversion - Increased function and lower price with minimal risk

In conclusion, the strategic and value-added software supplier will be focussed on maintaining their client relationships and so will not necessarily be phased by their client wanting to renegotiate contracts. Ultimately SAM outputs provide the client with the requisite information to have an informed pricing discussion with their suppliers...

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Web Links
IE Icon IBM zSeries Software Pricing Announcements
IE Icon IBM System z Software Pricing
IE Icon Microsoft Software Asset Management
IE Icon ISO/IEC 19770-1:2012 SAM Processes
IE Icon ISO/IEC 19770-1 SAM: Are You Ready? (CD)
IE Icon Investors In Software Self Assessment Engine
IE Icon Federation Against Software Theft Asset Management Group
Additional Information
PDF Icon z/OS Software Cost Optimization Options: UK GSE 2010 (2573 KB)
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