Reliable data – the basis of any SAM activity

22 mar '18 - Mark van Wolferen - share: LinkedIN Mail
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More and more organizations see the value of software asset management (SAM) and the SAM service sector is growing accordingly. A recent proof of the maturity of the field is the “Market Guide for Software Asset Management Managed Service Providers” published by Gartner. This report shows why the demand for SAM service providers will increase even more. The main reason: reliable data.

Gartner describes in the report how the software landscape has changed and is becoming increasingly complex. On the one hand, companies are faced with the increasing complexity of growing number of contracts, changing user rights and far greater range of software vendors than before. On the other hand, companies need to maintain different deployment environments – physical, mobile, virtual and in the cloud – all at the same time.
However, each platform requires a different approach: managing cloud contracts requires different knowledge and systems than managing on premises licenses does. In the meantime, the expenditures on cloud software are rising by an average of 20 percent per year and its management became a necessity as the risks also grow.

SAM managed service providers

Due to the changing software landscape, organizations are afraid they will lose oversight. More and more companies are therefore convinced of the benefits of software asset management, according to Gartner. However, the complexity, the amount of data and the wide variety of specialist tasks make it difficult for companies to set-up SAM internally. SAM service providers, with specialist knowledge in the field of license and usage terms of software, are therefore contracted more and more often. The IT analyst expects that the usage of SAM managed services providers will have increased by 40 percent in 2021.

Some of the most common reasons to engage a SAM managed service provider are compliance, avoidance of unnecessary costs or support with the purchase and implementation of a SAM-tool. An important added value of SAM service providers, according to Gartner, lies in the reliable data they provide. Reliable data forms the basis of any SAM activity, from determining the license position to optimizing software usage. A distinction can be made between completeness and accuracy of data.

Completeness - being sure that you have the correct data from all systems - is always the first step. If you do not know exactly which software product you spend too much on, you cannot possibly lower these costs. Accuracy involves performing the correct analysis of these data. You have reliable data, but do you also get relevant information out of them? This plays a major role, especially when it comes to enterprise software with many custom conditions per client.

Added value

These data are precisely the reason that Gartner foresees that the importance of SAM and SAM service providers will increase even more in the coming years. In an ideal situation, SAM does not only provide information for compliance and cost savings, but also offers insight that helps organizations in many other ways and brings new opportunities. It is not inconceivable that SAM service providers will also play a role in privacy and security issues and will become a crucial part of the overall risk management within an organization. Technological developments, the associated increasing complexity and new regulations such as the GDPR will only increase the added value of SAM service providers.

This article is also published in Dutch on Computable.nl.

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