Software Optimization: The Way to Cut Software Spending

20 Jul 2016 | SAM/SLO

How can you cut software spending with software license optimization?

A March 2016 Gartner report called ‘Cut Software Spending Safely with SAM’ stated that organizations can save 30% on their software licensing spend in the first year. This, together with subsequent savings of 5% a year provides a very compelling ROI and argument for Software Asset Management (SAM).

That said, how do you actually realize these savings?

What is Software License Optimization?

Before we share insight into how it can cut software spending, we need to define what Software License Optimization is.

A relatively new discipline, software license optimization (SLO) goes beyond software compliance to proactively manage your IT estate. SLO involves managing your software throughout its lifecycle, as well as ensuring that you only purchase the software you need. Developing from software asset management (SAM), software license optimization employs strategies which enables organization to minimize license consumption and costs.

Software License Optimization: The Key to Cutting Software Spend

Many organizations make the mistake of presuming that achieving an Effective License Position (ELP) is nirvana and any further SAM work is not needed. Although an ELP is an important step, certainly in terms of proving your license compliance and defending against what are becoming more aggressive vendor audits, it should be viewed as a means to an end, rather than the end itself.

It is now commonly accepted that the key to realizing these savings is achieved through software license optimization (SLO). Broadly, this can be broken down into the following steps:

  1. Discovery & inventory of all hardware and software – vital first step as, to use the old adage, “if you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it.”
  2. Normalize hardware and software – reducing the huge and varied amount of data produced by stage 1 to a standardized list of hardware and software, including licensable products and their install counts.
  3. Understand your entitlement – what licenses you own and which versions of a product you are entitled to use.
  4. Compare the results – of stage 2 with your entitlement, this will produce your ELP.
  5. Leverage Product use rights – upgrades, downgrades, secondary use etc. For more information see this article.
  6. Automate with policies & procedures – covering areas like software acquisition, use, check-in and a DR plan

Implementing Software License Optimization

In order to start reaping the benefits of reducing your software spend, implementing software license optimization is becoming essential. With the right SLO program and tool, you can remove any nasty surprises when your software audit comes up.

Are you looking to implement SLO? If you are considering optimizing your software licenses, get in touch with Certero today.

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